I am a qualified NCEF Fitness Instructor, certified STOTT PILATES® Instructor and certified Fascial Fitness Trainer, who has been teaching pilates in Germany and in the Malahide/Portmarnock area since 2003. I also completed my 2-year training as a Nutritious Movement™ Certified Restorative Exercise Specialist in 2018.
I am passionate about adding movement into the everyday for adults via Movement Makeovers and keeping schoolchildren healthy in the digital age via the Movement Month Teacher Training Program, which was accepted into the 5-month Academy Mentoring Program of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland in 2018.
The pilates method I teach is STOTT pilates but I also incorporate Nutritious Movement™ ideas and fascial work using MELT Method rollers as I find this combination to more effective than pilates alone. Read my Backstory below to find out why!
I used to have a “proper” job. I’m Irish and grew up in Ireland but, for many years, I worked in Germany and the Silicon Valley, USA as a Marketing Manager. I loved my job but my body did not.
It started out with carpal tunnel syndrome. I “fixed” that with physio. Then I got knee cartilage issues. I “fixed” that with fascial rolling. Then I developed degenerative disc disease in my lower back. I “fixed” that with pilates.In fact, I was so impressed with pilates that I quit my job and re-trained as a STOTT pilates teacher. Fast forward a few years and I developed a severe nerve issue; a neck fusion operation was suggested as the only solution.
I was starting to get mildly irritated to say the least! And confused… I couldn’t understand WHY I was getting these health issues. I didn’t smoke or drink, I wasn’t over-weight, my stress was manageable, I was a STOTT Pilates teacher for crying out loud (!), I lived an “active lifestyle”…. or so I thought!
Faced with this (to me, very scary) operation, I decided to finally look at the big picture as to WHY I was still getting these issues. Not life-threatening, I grant you, but enough to seriously affect my quality of life and mental health.
And I realised that actually I wasn’t that “active” at all. Sure, I dutifully worked out at the gym three times a week and hiked at weekends but I was sedentary the REST OF THE TIME. And, it turns out, the REST OF THE TIME was what really mattered!
Thanks to the inspiring work of Katy Bowman, Nutritious Movement, I started to add movement into my day. Frequently. And with variety. And my body thrived. So much so that I was able to avoid the neck fusion operation and all the pain/heartache associated with it.
That’s worth repeating: I was able to AVOID the neck fusion operation and all the pain/heartache associated with it. Just by moving differently. And more frequently.
I re-trained as a Restorative Exercise Specialist and became passionate about adding movement into the everyday.
In my classes, I noticed how many of my older clients were able to move better than the teenage ones (even the “fit” ones) and realised that this younger generation was adapting to a sedentary lifestyle at a far faster rate than my generation. I also realised that the sedentary lifestyle habit was being hardwired in primary schools, where movement was often actively discouraged!
MOVEMENT MONTH TEACHER TRAINING PROGRAM
So, I decided to develop the Movement Month program for adding natural movement into primary schools in a non-disruptive and cost-free way. In 2018, the program got accepted into the Mentoring Program of Social Entrepreneurs Ireland, and I’ve been developing it ever since.
I’m now at the stage of trialing the program in Ireland and the UK and the results continue to blow me away. Not only are the school children happy to move more, but the teachers are incredibly happy too, reporting better focus, attention and behaviour from the class!
Just by moving differently.
And more frequently.
MINI MOVEMENT MONTH PROGRAM
Most recently, I’ve also created the Mini Movement Month program, which shows you how to add natural movement into your everyday life at home, using little or no equipment, and with the changes living on AFTER you’ve made them!
Relevant at any time, but especially relevant during Covid-19 when so many children are being home-schooled or distance-learning; they are missing out on their regular activities and may have restricted outside movement. Just like their parents, they may be sitting more and moving less than usual.
Each of the 4 weeks addresses a specific natural movement idea;
Sitting Less, Sitting Differently, Going Shoe-less and Movement Breaks.
- Nutritious Movement™ Certified Restorative Exercise Specialist (2018)
- Certified Fascial Fitness Trainer (Somatics Academy, Dr. Robert Schleip, 2014)
- Certified STOTT PILATES Instructor, 2005
- National Certificate in Exercise & Fitness, 2003
- B.A. Honours International Marketing & Languages, Dublin City University, 1990
As part of my on-going education, I regularly complete continuing education workshops to ensure a high level of instruction and keep abreast of advancements in exercise science.
Workshops / continuing education completed to date include:
- Petra Fisher, Joints for Life, July 2020
- Dr. Robert Schleip, “Fascia as a source of back and pelvic pain”, July 2020
- MovNat® Metabolic, June 2020
- Divo Mueller, “Too much, too little? Healthy tonus regulation within the pelvic floor”, June 2020
- Dr. Jpop “Anti-Racism & Allyship for Rehab and Movement Professionals”, June 2020
- Nutritious Movement™ REcertified, February 2020
- Claire Mockridge “Your Pelvic Floor Matters”, August 2019
- Dynamic Aging Course, Nutritious Movement™, April 2019
- MovNat® Fundamentals Course, May 2019
- Nutritious Movement™ “Twist” Study Group, September 2018
- 5-day Returning RES Training, Castricum, The Netherlands, May 2018
- Nutritious Movement™ “Diastasi Recti”Study Group, March 2018
- Nutritious Movement™ Certified Restorative Exercise Specialist, Feb 2018
- 5-day Certifying Nutritious Movement™ Training Castricum, The Netherlands, May 2017
- Dr. Robert Schleip & Divo Mueller 4 day workshop – Fascial Fitness
- Katy Bowman -Why we need to start thinking about “Whole-Body” Pelvic Health
- Liz Koch 3 Day workshop – Stalking the Wild Psoas
- Liz Koch 2 Day Workshop – The Psoas Muscle Workshop
- Rebecca Leone 1 Day Workshop – Contract/ Relax Pilates Fusion
- Rebecca Leone 1 Day Workshop – Release, Relax & Rejuvenate
- Athletic Conditioning on Stability Cushions
- Athletic Conditioning for Strength & Agility on the Mat
- Conditioning Towel Workout for Strength & Mobility
- Rebecca Leone 3 Day workshop – Gap Filler
- Rebecca Leone 1 Day Workshop – Equalizing the Challenge across Mixed Level Groups
- Rebecca Leone 1 Day Workshop – Screening, Prepping & Problem-solving for Mixed Level Groups
- Scoliosis Management
- Matwork for Breast Cancer Rehab
- Ultimate Back Care
- Postural Analysis Review
- Post-Natal Pilates
- Pilates for Osteoporosis
- Pre-Natal Pilates
- Golf Pilates
- Flexibility Overview
- Foam Roller Pilates
- Intensifying Pilates
- Fitness Circle Pilates
- Postural Analysis
- Program Design
- Injuries and Special Populations – Appropriate pilates programmes can also be tailored for special population groups including post-rehab patients, wheelchair-bound patients, patients with FMS, MS, Osteoporosis and Fibromyalgia.