This evening, I was reflecting on my day and I realized that all of my morning clients were over 70 years old.
My morning started at 8:30am with a 74-year-old woman who has arthritis "everywhere including my eyes," as she says and the morning ended with three ladies in a group session who are all in their mid-70s.
Truth be told, working with the mature population can be frustrating at times. Take this morning's group session. Three women on three Reformers. The directions go something like this:
"OK, I want you to lengthen your right leg, point your toe and draw your navel into your spine."
Two left legs go up and one right leg bends out to the side.
"Let's all try that again. Extend your right leg to the ceiling. Then point your toe."
One right leg goes up. One left leg drops out to the side. And one head looks up at me, while both legs stay down.
"All Right. Follow. Closely. Here. POINT TO YOUR RIGHT LEG. THANK YOU. NOW STICK IT STRAIGHT UP IN THE AIR."
The fine details of Pilates - i.e. the pointed toes, the long lines of graceful movement, the contracted abdominal muscles - can easily be lost on this generation. I've come to accept that fact and to work carefully and (mostly) patiently with each person. They reward me tremendously for my efforts.
My early at-home morning client brought in an eggplant from her garden and a decorative pillow that she found at Long's for $7.00. She had been on a quest for the perfect pillow for weeks and was quite excited about showing me her find. I get these little bits of pleasure sprinkled throughout my days. Sometimes, it's in the form of something edible and yummy (like freshly baked cookies) and other times, it'll be updated pictures of grandkids, a new recipe, or a book they think I might like.
I love that I have a client base, that, for the most part, is more interested in the way that they feel rather than the way that they look. And, in the process, they make me feel pretty good too.