This post is based on an article that originally appeared in Personal Fitness Professional Magazine. Read the full story here.
When you're a personal trainer, clients usually come to you wanting to feel like they've had a "solid workout," and there's a misperception that Pilates or other forms of mindful movement won't give them that. Fitness professional Patrick Przyborowski faces that attitude all the time. His solution? He weaves mindfulness into more traditional workouts, achieving results that often surprise his clients in terms of strength and fitness gains.
For Patrick, a good workout isn't about working harder. It's about working smarter. When clients become more aware of their bodies through mindful movement, they improve their form, reduce injuries and enhance their fitness.
Want to introduce mindful movement into your own programming? Here are Patrick's top three tips for getting past the doubters:
1. Mix and match. You don't have to do all Pilates all the time to see benefits from it. If you have clients who want a good sweat session to feel like they've gotten a decent workout, include intervals and weights, then throw in some Reformer exercises as a reminder to move mindfully, both on and off the equipment. After a while, that mindfulness becomes second nature.
2. Focus on goals, not tactics. If you think introducing mindfulness will turn your clients off, rethink how you communicate. Instead of trying to sell them on mindfulness, Pilates or mind-body exercise. determine what their goals are, then tell them you'll be doing a program that aligns with those goals.
3. Don't overload them with info. While some people like having data that supports their pursuit of a specific fitness goal, many will find too much information overwhelming. Offer need-to-know info to start, then give them space to experience the new modality, ask questions, and understand the benefits through experience rather than having to process a bunch of data they may not understand.
"Not everyone jumps on board right away, so I've learned to alter my communications techniques and encourage clients to drop any preconceived notions," says Patrick. "I’m always charmed when clients are surprised to find out they’ve been doing Pilates and other mind-body modalities for weeks without realizing it."
Patrick Przyborowski runs Practice Fitness, a full-service Pilates and personal training studio in Dayton, Ohio. In addition to training his own clients, he also offers mindful movement training for other instructors. Patrick has a B.S. in Communications and certifications that include STOTT PILATES®, CORE™, Halo® Training, TRX®, FMS Level 1 and ACE. www.practice-center.com