Looking back at my working life I never thought I would be running a Pilates business at the age of 48. My degrees certainly don't lead into that direction but here we are. ArrowPilates celebrates two years in business.
Not sure if I am an exception but when I graduated with a Tourism degree in 1993 and a Communication degree in 2006 I didn't think about working with bodies. Anyone who knows me from those days would have raised their eyebrows if I had mentioned it. Not because it is an odd thing to do but because it just didn't fit at the time.
I was OK in doing sport activities; not overly competitive and definitely not happy in group sports. However, I did do a lot of step aerobics - we are talking early 90s - perhaps that was a clear sign for my future career? But teaching anything sportive, no. My career was destined to be something in Tourism. Needless to say I didn't do that for long. Too limited for me.
Moving into mainstream Communications I decided to follow up my Bachelor degree with a Masters. I was an adult and was ready for new knowledge. Not so much to pursue a specific job but to satisfy my ongoing curiosity. By that time I had moved into regular gym going and the occasional game of squash.
Pilates only came along when I moved to London. Having done the gym for many years I was so bored with that, it was time to try something new. Pilates stuck with me from the start. But still no sign that I would be doing something with that professionally.
My husband is the one who knew before I did. I had been doing Pilates on a very regular basis all over London and never felt better. We already made the decision to move to New Zealand and I was contemplating what I would be doing over there. No big corporate companies in Queenstown let alone a big choice in marketing jobs.
About a year before we left London, I came home after my Saturday morning Pilates class and felt great. Was it the adrenaline or did I see the light? But suddenly I knew I had to do something with this type of exercise that made me feel good, in which I was good at and in which I saw myself working. And my husband only nodded and said 'well, that took a while before you saw it'.
New Zealand was on the horizon and I was to set up my own business and run Pilates classes. Still a bit naive about it because being good at something doesn't mean you can actually teach it.
Fast forward to now. My business has arrived in the toddler phase; still wearing diapers but almost walking independently. An anniversary makes you reminisce about the how and what. My degrees may not sound very fitting for what I do now but they have given me the knowledge, attitude and backbone to set this up.
I am grateful to have helped, improved and empowered bodies of men and women in the last two years with Pilates. Every day I tell my husband how happy this job makes me feel. That I have such great clients who leave the studio or mat room on a high. And return for more.
Thank you for your support and let's make it better in the next year.
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Marco Dingemans is a qualified Classical Pilates instructor