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Studio Re-Opening: Your Questions Answered

Posted on 22nd July 2020 by

With our studio re-opening on 27th July, we’ve had a number of questions for the finer details and to clarify a few things. As always, we’re more than happy to answer any questions you may have, so here we go!

How do I get back to my original class when you can finally open “as normal”?  

To be honest, we don’t know when ‘as normal’ will be. We can only work with what guidance is currently in place. That means we have a new ‘normal’ timetable in place. We can only accommodate 4 people per class currently and have scope to expand our timetable depending on demand. Those who sign up to a new class will be securing their place in that class. We hope that in time, we will be able to expand class sizes and therefore accommodate more people.

Can my membership still be on hold if I don’t want to do any classes whatsoever until it is back “to normal”?

Yes, of course! We will happily keep your membership on hold until you’re ready. You can still access Pilates in a number of ways, including pre-recorded online classes and 1-2-1 sessions in the clinic.

When people have booked and at last minute they cancel, will you be able to offer to someone else on a waiting list?

Ay present, we are unable to offer our usual ‘make up’ class system, accommodate changes in classes and hold waiting lists. This is because we are supporting class ‘bubbles’ to minimise contact between lot’s of different people and we don’t have the scope to offer lot’s of additional spaces for ‘make up’ classes.

Can I still continue with the online Pilates classes?

Yes, the online pre-recorded Pilates will be continuing. You can sign up for this here. If you want to stop your online Pilates subscription, just sign in to your account and cancel your subscription.

If I come back to the studio, what happens to my online subscription?

Studio classes and the online subscription are handled separately. Some people may want to continue to access the online classes, if so you don’t need to do anything, your online subscription will continue. If, however, you’d like to cancel your online subscription now the studio is open, you’ll need to do this through your online account.

My usual class isn’t on the new timetable

Unfortunately, in the current climate, it has not been possible for us to re-start the previous timetable. We have had changes in staffing schedules and hours, are phasing staff back in from furlough and given that we have to reduce class times and numbers, it just wasn’t possible to continue the old timetable.

We have made sure that we have created a timetable with a good and varied selection of classes, levels and Instructors throughout the week, to offer everyone a choice.

You can take a look at the latest timetable here.

What if I sign up to a Monday and there is a bank holiday?

In this case, we will allow you to make up your class at another time on the timetable, or will put on an extra class for your class at another time that week.

If I want to join Reformer Pilates do I need an induction?

With Reformer Pilates, you’ll need to do a few 1-2-1 sessions before you join a class. This ensures you are familiar with the Reformer bed and equipment, confident moving about on it and are happy with some basic exercises. These 1-2-1 sessions will really help you get the most from the classes. Read more about Reformer Pilates here.

Why do I have to wear a face covering?

We have decided to have both our Instructors and class attendees wearing face masks / coverings. This is because we want to be able to walk round the class to give you guidance and verbal instructions to adjust your position and get the most from your Pilates exercises. This means we can’t keep a distance of 2m from everyone, in which case, it is advised to wear a face covering. This protects both the Instructor and all the class attendees. We aren’t able to offer hands on adjustment in a group situation.

We will be constantly reviewing and adjusting how we are working, so if you have any feedback at all, please do let us know.


Studio Re-Opening News

Posted on 18th July 2020 by

We are delighted that we can finally re-open our studio and re-start our wonderful, Pilates classes, albeit in a slightly different way (but hey, think we’re all used to constant change by now!).

The good news is, you’ll be meeting the same great instructors in the same place, so not all change!

We’ve carefully scrutinised and analysed all of the official and expert guidance and advice and have put in place some key changes to ensure you can safely re-start classes. Here’s a bit more information about the new class set up.

Class Sizes

The good news is, there is a maximum of only 4 people per class, so you’ll receive lot’s of support and guidance!

New Timetable

In order to comply with the latest guidance, we have to limit the number of people in the studio. We also have to allow extra time between classes, for cleaning, ventilation and to manage the flow of people. We have therefore launched a new class timetable. The timetable will be revised regularly and new classes added as soon as we reach capacity. Should any classes not be popular, we reserve the right to review the timings and change the timetable based on demand.

Class Timings

All classes will now be 45 minutes to help ensure we can run them all smoothly and offer enough sessions. Classes will start and finish on time and we ask that you don’t hang about after the class (sorry, we know you all enjoy this but we have to limit numbers in the building).

Class Bubbles

For now, we won’t be offering our usual ‘make up’ system if you can’t attend your regular class. We need to help limit contact between individuals, so you will need to sign up to a regular, weekly class and won’t be able to swap classes.

Membership & Payment

We have had to review our prices and given that we’ve had to reduce our class capacity by almost two thirds, we’ve had to increase the monthly Pilates membership slightly. It equates to just over £1 a class increase. The new prices for Pilates are:

  • 1 mat class a week monthly membership £60 / month
  • 2 mat classes a week monthly membership £115 / month
  • 1 Reformer class a week monthly membership £100 / month
  • Reformer / Mat combo (1 of each class a week) £150 / month

We are currently unable to offer PAYG Pilates as we have to carefully manage numbers and ‘bubbles’, so can’t have lot’s of different people coming to different classes every week.

What to bring to the studio?

We ask that you bring as little as possible to the studio. You’ll need to wear socks (ideally with grips) and bring a face covering with you.

During the Classes

Our Instructors will still be on hand to guide and help you with the exercises. They will be taking a ‘hands off’ approach, so will be prompting you verbally to help you get the most from the exercises.

If weather (and noise) permits, we will be keeping the windows open during the classes. So, depending on the weather you may want to add (or remove) a layer of clothing or bring an extra layer!

We ask that you stay within your own area during the class and don’t move around the studio.

Coronavirus Screening

Before anyone comes to the clinic, you’ll be asked to complete an online Coronavirus screening questionnaire.

When you arrive at the clinic, we will take your temperature with a distanced forehead thermometer. Anyone with a high temperature will not be able to join in the class.

We ask that if you or anyone in your household has symptoms of Coronavirus, that you follow the latest isolation guidance.

Enhanced Cleaning

At the end of every class, we will ask you to wipe down your own area with the products supplied. The studio will be thoroughly cleaned on a regular basis.

Reformer Pilates

If you are coming to Reformer Pilates, you will be asked to wear gloves whilst on the machines. We can supply disposable gloves or you can purchase full finger ‘grip’ gloves to bring with you. These are great or you can find something similar in sports shops.

What to expect: Step by Step

  1. Do not arrive any earlier than 10 minutes before your class is scheduled to start.
  2. When you arrive, you will be let into the clinic by our reception team, who will take your temperature. Please wear a face covering and use the hand gel.
  3. Please make your way straight up to the studio.
  4. Each participant will have a dedicated area in the studio. Please ensure you stay within this area. There will be a box for you to put in anything you bring with you.
  5. Ensure you are wearing socks, ideally Pilates socks with grips / non-slip.
  6. During the class, your Instructor will be able to walk round and prompt and help you with the exercises verbally, but they won’t be able to be ‘hands on’.
  7. At the end of the class, we ask that you wipe down the mat, blocks and any other equipment you’ve used with the cleaning products supplied.
  8. Use the hand gel on leaving the studio.
  9. Make your way out of the clinic promptly, using the exit at the bottom of the stairs.

We know how much you all value the ‘social’ aspect of the classes and catching up with people and chatting every week. However, we have to strictly limit the number of people and time spent in the clinic, so we’d really appreciate your support with this by leaving classes promptly.

FAQs

Take a look here, where we answer some of your most frequently asked questions.

Thank you!

This is just a starting point for us. We very much hope that in time we can relax how we operate, expand the timetable and be more flexible by re-introducing PAYG Pilates and make up classes. We hope you can understand that we are operating under very stringent guidance which is in the best interest of our team and the community, so any decisions are based on this. We’ve been providing Pilates classes to the local people of Chandlers Ford since 2011 and want to ensure we can continue to offer these highly valued classes for a long time to come!

We appreciate your compliance with the new ways, your understanding and continued support.

The goPhysio Pilates Team



Pilates Options at goPhysio

Posted on 12th June 2020 by

goPhysio Pilates

We’ve spoken to our Pilates attendees, listened and responded and are now offering a range of ways for you to continue to enjoy and benefit from Pilates at goPhysio.

We are currently offering you 4 choices so you can continue Pilates: 

  1. Pilates at Home: Online pre-recorded classes 
  2. Pilates at Home: Live class timetable – launching 22nd June! 
  3. 1-2-1 Pilates Online 
  4. 1-2-1 Pilates Face to Face

We hope to be able to re-start small classes in our studio very soon. 

If you have any questions or aren’t sure which option would be best for you, please give us a call on 023 8025 3317 or drop us an email to pilates@gophysiotherapy.co.uk



How to get the most from your Online Classes & Sessions

Posted on 12th June 2020 by

In light of the Coronavirus pandemic, the surge in online classes, sessions and exercising has been unbelievable!

At goPhysio, we now offer a range of online services, including:

  1. Online physio appointments
  2. Pre-recorded and live online Pilates classes
  3. Online 1-2-1 Pilates sessions

To help you get the most from your online experience, we’ve put together some top tips!

  • Always make sure you exercise in a safe area, with enough space around you and free from any hazrads. 
  • Try and set the time aside, so you can focus on your class or session without distraction (everyone deserves some self care time!).
  • We often send updates or links, tips and advice via email. So please keep an eye on your emails (including junk) and add us to your ‘safe sender’ list.
  • Some sessions will take place over Zoom, so please download Zoom for free here if you don’t already have it. 
  • You will need a device with a camera and audio (laptop, computer, tablet or phone all work just as well!).
  • The session will work better if you have stable broadband connection. 
  • Position your device so that the camera can capture you exercising sideways on if possible. 
  • Always make sure you exercise in a safe area, with enough space around you and free from any hazrads.
  • We advise using a Pilates or yoga mat and bare feet or ‘grippy’ socks.
  • Have a Pilates block, small cushion or towel handy.
  • View in full screen, so it fills your device screen.
  • Before you take part in any of our Pilates classes, make sure you are familiar and confident with the 5 Key Elements of Pilates
  • Make sure you only take part in classes that are the right level for you. Take a look here for guidance on what level class you should do and when you should progress. 
  • If you have any questions or concerns about any of the exercises, plese contact us or seek advice from a suitably qualified professional. 

Enjoy your class!



What level of Pilates should I do?

Posted on 8th April 2020 by

A question we get asked a lot at goPhysio, as people become familiar with Pilates or have been coming for some time, is

What level class should I do?

We offer 3 levels of mat based Pilates classes, Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. This follows the APPI training concept, which all of our Instructors have completed.

Now there is access to so many online classes, with less in person and face to face support, it is even more important that people are advised what level of classes to take part in.

At goPhysio, if you’ve been attending any of our Pilates classes for a while, we keep an eye on you and will suggest when we think is the right time for you to try and progress up a level. Without that guidance, Physio & Pilates Instructor, Roz, has put in place fantastic guide to help you identify what you.

So, are you ready to progress and challenge yourself with the next level?

Follow the diagram below to see what skill set you require to start each level.

Challenge yourselves during this time of isolation with our online Pilates classes

Then book a 1:1 review when the clinic re-opens and see if you have met that challenge and are ready to progress to the next level.



Take Time to Focus on your Breathing

Posted on 31st March 2020 by

Now, more than any other time, we should regularly spend a few moments each day and think about our breathing.

The current change in our life styles will have a significant impact on our breathing, whether that is due to lower levels of activity from the imposed restrictions, or an increase in stress and anxiety due to the unprecedented circumstances we find ourselves in.

Both of these scenarios will lead us to spending most of our time doing what we call Apical Breathing.  This is when the breathing is mainly confined to the upper chest. As a result of apical breathing, the accessory muscles in your shoulders are doing all the work without the pay-off of a deep breath. Since the inhalation is shallow, the body has to compensate by breathing more frequently. This creates a poorer exchange of oxygen and increase tension in our neck and shoulders. 

Image courtesy of Temple Health

Ideally we should spend regular periods of time doing what is known as Diaphragmatic Breathing.  This is when we use the diaphragm to lift and spread the ribs on inhalation and ease them back down on exhalation.  This allows the lungs to work more efficiently, utilising a larger proportion of the lungs resulting in more oxygen being transferred into the bloodstream and around the body.  It also reduces the work load of the muscles around our neck and shoulders.

Try these two approaches to improving your breathing technique, feel the benefits of increasing oxygen supply and reducing the tension in the muscles around your neck and shoulders.

Technique 1 ‘At Rest’

Lie on your back with your hips and knees bent up, feet flat on the floor. Place a folded towel or small pillow under your head. Place your hands across the lower half of your ribcage with the tips of your fingers slightly interlaced.  Breathe in and allow your lower ribs to expand widthways. Let your fingertips draw apart from one another slightly. Breathe out and allow your ribcage to sink inwards and downwards. Your fingertips may interlace slightly as you empty your lungs. Watch that you do not lift your breastbone as you breathe in. Instead imagine the back of your ribcage spreading wide into the floor underneath you.  Keep your neck and shoulders relaxed.

Once you have learned to do this exercise lying down you can then use this skill to improve your breathing when sat at your desk or when standing up.

Technique 2 ‘Being Active’

When we increase our activity levels we require more oxygen and therefore generally we employ more of our lung capacity to do this.

Current Government guidelines (as of 23rd March 2020) allow each individual to leave the house for exercise once a day. So a run, walk or cycle (within social distancing limits) are excellent ways of improving your breathing. If you are unable to do this then the following exercises can be done in your own home:

  • Star jumps
  • Step ups on the bottom step of the stairs
  • Repeated sit to stand from a chair
  • Skipping
  • Squat thrusts/burpees

The list is endless so see what you can come up with!


5 Key Elements of Pilates

Posted on 24th March 2020 by

All of our Pilates classes focus around 5 important, key elements. These elements help to underpin all the exercises we do, connecting your breathing, posture, mind and movement.

Many people are now taking part in our online Pilates classes in their own time, or starting Pilates for the first time. We would normally always go through these important underlying steps with you on an individual basis, before you start Pilates. And remind you on a regular basis. So, we thought it would be useful to provide a reminder of these 5 Key Elements.

Key Element #1: Breathing

  1. Lie on your back with your hips and knees bent up (the rest position).
  2. Place a folded towel under your head if you feel that your chin is poking upwards.
  3. Place your hands across the lower half of your ribcage with the tips of your fingers slightly interlaced.
  4. Breathe in and allow your ribs to expand widthways.
  5. Let your fingertips draw apart from one another slightly.
  6. Breathe out and allow your ribcage to sink inwards and downwards.
  7. Your fingertips may interlace slightly as you empty your lungs.
  8. Watch that you do not lift your breastbone as you breathe in. Instead imagine the back of your ribcage spreading wide into the mat underneath you 

You can repeat this in standing or sitting to truly understand your Pilates Breathing.

Key Element #2: Centering

Lie in the rest position.

FINDING NEUTRAL SPINE POSITION.

Place your thumbs in your belly button, your fingertips on the pubic bone and flatten the heels of your hands onto the bony pelvic bones to form a diamond shape, AKA – the pelvic diamond. Tilt the pelvic diamond away from you to exaggerate the arch in your lower back. Tilt the pelvic diamond towards you to flatten your back. Repeat these gentle tilting movement a few more times. Now position the pelvic diamond in the middle of these two positions – this is your neutral spine position. 

SETTING YOUR CENTRE WITH ABDOMINALS MUSCLES.

Feel your deep abdominal corset by placing your fingertips on your bony pelvic bones and then sliding your fingertips in and down 4cm. Now imagine your deep abdominal muscles forming a natural corset, criss-crossing the torso in layers. There are 10 notches in this corset, below the belly button, just like a belt. Breathe in to prepare, breathe out all the way and before the next breath in slowly and gently draw in the muscular corset from below the belly button onto the third notch. You should feel the muscles under your fingertips subtly draw away. Hold your centre and keep breathing normally. Less is better – the contraction is very gentle so don’t over do it.

SETTING YOUR CENTRE WITH PELVIC FLOOR MUSCLES.

Gently draw your pelvic floor muscles in and up to hold your bladder from emptying. Now breathe normally and try to keep that engagement in your pelvic floor muscles. Now place your fingertips onto your deep abdominal muscles. You may also feel the muscles under your fingertips gently draw away – this is normal!

Key Element #3: The Rib Cage

Lie in the rest position, with your arms resting over your ribcage. Find your neutral spine position and set your centre. As you take a deep breathe in, feel the movement of your Ribcage expanding laterally and upwards. Breathe out and notice the movement of your ribcage back to its start position. Repeat this movement about 6 times.

Key Element #4: Shoulder Blades

Lie in the rest position.

SHOULDER BLADE RETRACTION AND PROTRACTION

Keeping your arms long, float them upward vertically to the ceiling. Imagine you are holding a helium balloon between your hands. Breathe in and reach upwards through your fingertips, allowing the helium balloon to lift your arms further upwards and glide your shoulder blades gently apart from one another. Breath out and gently draw your shoulder blades back towards one another without pinching them together. Repeat several more times and then lower your arms to the mat.

SHOULDER BLADE ELEVATION AND DEPRESSION

With your arms resting long beside your body, breathe in and glide your shoulder blades gently upwards, keeping your arms on the mat. Breathe out and gently glide your shoulder blades down away from your ears (this movement is produced by the lower trapezius muscle). Repeat several times.

Key Element #5: Head and Neck

If you have neck pain or headaches, always commence this exercise lying down to reduce the load through your neck.

Lie in the rest position. Place a small folded towel under your head if your feel that your chin is poking upwards. Place a shiny magazine on top of the towel to reduce friction. Feel the bony area on the back of your head resting on the magazine. Now lengthen this bony part of your head away from the base of your neck. Hold for a second or two and then relax. Repeat several times. Alternatively, imagine that someone is gently pulling the hair on the crown of your head to lengthen the back of your neck.

Less is better – the contraction is very gentle so don”t over do it. Place your hands on the muscles on the front of your neck. The muscles should remain soft.

The Rest Position

In the rest position your muscles are relaxed and your joints are in neutral alignment. You should try to incorporate the key points of the rest position into all postures throughout your day.

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent up and you head supported on a small cushion or folded towel.
  2. Relax the weight of your head into the support.
  3. Lengthen the back of the neck by reaching the crown of the head towards the wall behind you.
  4. Gently draw your shoulder blades down towards your waist to relax the neck and shoulders.
  5. Soften the ribcage into the mat to connect the back of the ribcage on the mat.
  6. Place your feet and knees hip distance apart.
  7. Make sure that your weight rests on the six key points of the feet: the base of each big toes, each little toe and the centre of the heel on each foot.
  8. Imagine your pelvis is a bucket of water. Tip it backwards to spill some water out the back of the bucket and you will feel your back gently flatten onto the mat. Now tip it forwards to spill some water out of the front of the bucket and you will feel your lower back arch slightly. Find your ‘neutral spine’ position by resting the bucket halfway between these two movements. There should be a small space between your back and the mat, and your pubic and hip bones should form a small flat triangle.
  9. Maintaining the neutral spine position, INHALE wide into the sides and back of the ribcage and then EXHALE. At the end of your exhale, slowly draw up through the pelvic floor muscles to engage these and your deep abdominal muscles.
  10. Hold this gently contraction and keep breathing for up to ten breaths,

If you’d like to join us for some online Pilates classes, head on over to our Pilates Facebook community group.



Pilates Exercise of the Month: Double Leg Stretch

Posted on 1st February 2020 by

Each month we’re bringing you a different Pilates exercise to practice and focus on, as recommended by one of our Pilates Instructors. This month, Hugo recommends the Double Leg Stretch.

This is my favourite Pilates exercise. It is the most complete one. Not only do you need to focus on keeping your core muscles engaged but also on coordinating arms with legs. Coordination and stability, all in one exercise, can’t beat that!

  1. Lie on your back with your knees bent up in the Pilates Rest Position.
  2. Have your legs a hip width apart, shoulders drawn down and in and your neck long. Centre engaged.
  3. Float your legs one at a time into the table top position and lift both arms to the ceiling.
  4. Breath in to prepare.
  5. Breath out and lower both arms overhead. Simultaneously, reach your left leg forwards and upwards on a diagonal.
  6. Breath in and circle your arms outwards and then downwards. Simultaneously, fold the left leg back into tabletop.
  7. Repeat alternating legs.
Hugo Carvalheiro - Physiotherapist & Level 2 APPI Pilates Instructor

Enjoy this month’s exercise! Hugo, Physiotherapist & Pilates Instructor



Thinking of Starting Pilates?

Posted on 7th January 2020 by

The new year always gets people thinking about or talking about starting something new. It can be a great time to give a boost to your health and wellbeing.

Pilates is a great form of exercise, so many people are recommended to do it by friends, family, their GP or surgeon. But many people don’t actually know what it is or what it will entail and that can put them off.

Starting any new form of exercise can seem daunting at first, many us worry about looking silly in front of a class or not knowing what to do, what to expect or even what to wear!

But fear not!! Everyone started somewhere, and although many of our classes have formed close friendships, they can too remember what it was like to start out!

This is one of the reasons we always offer everyone new to Pilates a free 30 minute induction session. This allows you to talk through any health or injury concerns with one of our Clinical Pilates Instructors and help you find out more about Pilates. The Instructor will modify any exercises to suit your individual needs and guide you towards a suitable level class for you.

You’ll also learn the basics of what pilates is: finding your postural muscles and learning some of the common beginner exercises to get you up to speed before entering a class.

You’ll have the chance to ask questions about anything else you’re concerned about so you can start your first class in confidence.

Your first class

The first class can be as much as a mental workout as a physical one whilst you get used to controlling your breathing whilst using new muscles in a new way. However, no one expects you to be perfect straight away so don’t panic – the Instructor leading the class will make sure you’re exercising safely and at the correct level, as long as you are still breathing that’s a good enough start for the first few weeks so don’t worry if you can’t co-ordinate everything straight away!

As with learning any new skill it takes time. Remember that pilates is non-competitive so you will work at your own level during each class. We’ll progress your exercises gradually and encourage you to move up to intermediate and advanced level classes when you’re ready.

It can take 6-8weeks to build muscle, and much longer if you’ve had pain or weakness in an area for a long time so whilst we can’t expect an overnight body transformation, you will notice the difference if you stick with it. Our regular pilates attendees report increased flexibility, reduced pain, improved balance, improved muscle tone and strength, better posture and improved confidence to exercise as just a few of the benefits of our classes!

pilates gophysio

Don’t forget – everyone was a beginner at some point and our classes provide a really supportive and friendly environment to exercise.

We run 20 classes a week from our studio in Chandlers Ford and offer a range of flexible membership options, to suit everyone. If you’d like to give it a try, why not book a FREE no obligation 1-2-1 by calling us on 023 8025 3317.

Read More

More about Pilates

Pilates Timetable

Centreing, the building block of Pilates

How is Clinical Pilates different?


Pilates Exercise of the Month – Roll Up

Posted on 1st January 2020 by

Each month we’re bringing you a different Pilates exercise to practice and focus on, as recommended by one of our Pilates Instructors. This month, Roz recommends the Roll Up.

This is a more advanced abdominal exercises that ensures you continue to activate all the layers of abdominal muscles together.  If the deeper ‘core’ muscles are not working effectively your feet will lift off the floor, giving you the perfect feedback as to how well you are doing the exercise.  As your control improves you simply increase the range you move through.

  1. Sit on the floor with your legs in front of you, hip distance apart. Bend your hips and knees a little. Ensure that your pelvis is in an upright, neutral position. Lengthen your upper spine and back of your neck. Lift both arms to shoulder height, keeping the arms long.
  2. Breath in to prepare.
  3. Breath out and roll off the back of your sitting bones to round your lower back and tilt your pelvis backwards. Continue to move in this direction as far as you can maintain control, allowing your back to form a C shape curve. Keep the head upright.
  4. Breath in and maintain the C shape curve of your spine and bring your shoulders over the hips, then roll your pelvis forwards onto the sitting bones and re stack your spine, one bone at a time to resume your starting position.
goPhysio Pilates Instructor

Enjoy this month’s exercise! Roz, Physiotherapist & Pilates Instructor