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instructor of the month

Denise Gracie

April 2019

WHERE DO YOU TEACH?

 

I currently teach in the North East of Scotland within the Aberdeenshire villages of Newmachar, Balmedie and Potterton, all of which are a short distance from the city of Aberdeen.   

 

Your teaching tips

 

I try to make every session as enjoyable as I can.  It’s my aim not only to help each student to achieve their goals and obtain the benefits they desire, but to do so in a fun and enjoyable way.  It’s important to me for my students to buy into me and not only feel assured that I will keep them safe in every class but also allow them to reach their full potential and not hold them back in any way.  In my opinion, people buy people so personality is really important as well as being able to empathise with your students and provide as much knowledge as you can.  On the practical side, it’s important to be well organised and plan classes properly but to also allow yourself to be led by how the class is feeling and responding. 

 

Favourite Exercise and reason why?

 

This is a difficult question as there are so many different mat exercises that I love to teach and practise.  The Double Leg Stretch has to be one of my personal favourites though due to the different versions of the exercise that can be performed and I tend to find that every student has a favourite!  I enjoy incorporating the use of a small gym ball into this exercise also, by passing the ball from one hand to the other and sliding it behind the knees. It adds a little bit of interest and fun to the exercise, which always goes down well with students. As they say, variety is the spice of life!   

 

tell us a little bit about yourself and your experience in the industry

 

I started my Business Body Grace in 2014, after gaining my Level 3 Pilates Mat qualification with Pilates Union UK.  I retrained as Pilates teacher after having my second child after discovering how Pilates had transformed my lower back pain, brought on by sitting for long periods while working in an office.  I believed Pilates had been instrumental in relieving my symptoms and quickly developed a desire to become fully qualified so that I could share the benefits of the regime, having always had an interest in working with and helping others.   

 

In 2017 I became qualified in the BarreConcept method and I find that being able to offer Pilates as well as Barre offers a good mix for my students and has allowed me to grow my Business further.   

 

I run several Pilates and BarreConcept classes, as well as classes specific for the over 60s age group, having organically grown my Business since it started due to growing demand and my continued passion for helping others.

 

Do you have a motto or mission statement?

 

Every class is ‘Showtime’. We all have days that we perhaps don’t feel as good as others, we’re only human, however the way I see it is that my students pay me good money to come to class so I must ensure that I give them their money’s worth and make each class special and worthwhile, showing true commitment to all of my students. This motto/catch phrase and my own way of thinking and commitment to running the best classes in the North East has allowed me to retain a client base of regulars and build up a lengthy waiting list.  I only ever give 100% in my classes.

 

Where do you see yourself in 5 years from now?

 

At this start of my career in Pilates I was told that in this profession you would never stop learning and that is something I firmly agree with. I’d like to continue on my journey of learning and growing as a Pilates specialist and of course continue to help others.  I would love to become qualified in the Reformer as well as delve into remedial therapies.  In 5 years, I will hopefully have my own studio if the stars align.

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