Erika Bloom Pilates
Erika Bloom Pilates
BY CLÉMENCE VON MUEFFLING
Ready for a longer and leaner you? Ready to finally improve your daily posture?
Meet Erika Bloom! Dubbed a ‘Pilates Genius’ by Vogue and a ‘Pilates Goddess’ by Vanity Fair, she is now THE reference for Pilates in New York.
Her many years in ballet, modern dance and Pilates gave her a vision that encompasses movement and healthy habits.
She offers a mind-body workout that focuses on lengthening, strengthening and alignment. It is not only about immediate results but long-term benefits for your body.
Of course you will quickly feel in tip-top shape, but you will also have the tools to have better posture and improve your weak spots. And if you look at the long term this is also what you want!
Bloom and her passionate and knowledgeable team of instructors take a detailed and individualized approach to fitness.
Each session is personally tailored resulting in a more effective and efficient session. It is a true body-changing fitness.
AT ERIKA BLOOM PILATES YOU OFFER A ‘BODY CHANGING FITNESS’ WORKOUT. COULD YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT IT AND YOUR VISION?
Our approach starts with truly understanding a person’s physiology and what movements are influencing their shape.
We create custom exercise sequences and specific cueing to target imbalances, thinking of length and strength, as well as muscle and fascia. We also cultivate a deeper mind-body connection so clients are given a new awareness for lasting change. Some of the solutions would surprise you… It can be tight feet causing a saggy butt; or a deep, tiny muscle in the hip that isn’t firing, and is causing a leg to look too soft. It really all starts with alignment and the deep, intrinsic musculature. However, my vision isn’t just about looks, it’s about total wellness. My philosophy is that our workouts should make us feel good both inside and out. This aids in nourishing and calming the nervous system; enhancing immunity and digestion, as well as promoting beautiful skin. Each session prioritizes posture and grace with a balance of stretching and strengthening. There is also a question of longevity. A workout should be so good for you that you can start as a teen and do it into your 80’s and 90’s.
THE STUDIO LOOKS BEAUTIFUL. COULD YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT WHAT YOU DID TO MAKE IT A HEALTHY WORK ENVIRONMENT?
Thank you. Beautiful, healthy surroundings are very important to me since we spend so much of our time at work.
Originally one of the driving factors for my profession was not wanting to spend my days in an unhealthy office environment. Both the main studio spaces as well as the offices are light, airy, and calm, with windows lining each wall. We kept the design clean and modern, avoiding clutter. I believe the minimalism helps keep the mind calm and clear. Maintaining an eco-friendly environment is always top priority, so we opted for sustainable bamboo flooring with non-toxic finishes, top of the line air filtration systems, and an avoidance of fluorescent lighting, as well as VOC paints. We also substitute traditional cleaners for organic cleaning products to be used within the space. My staff trades desk chairs for physioballs (Technogym is our current favorite), and takes Pilates sessions almost every day. It is the antithesis of what most people have come to accept as a traditional work environment.
COULD YOU TELL US MORE ABOUT THE BENEFITS OF PILATES ON OUR DAILY POSTURE; ESPECIALLY FOR THOSE WHO SPEND MOST OF THEIR DAYS SITTING AT WORK?
Pilates balances the body so that proper posture becomes effortless. We consider and address imbalances in the resting length of muscles as well as in the fascia (or connective tissue). We also specifically work the deep, intrinsic musculature that is responsible for supporting the body in its ideal alignment. For people who spend the majority of their days hunched over a computer, or glued to their iPhone (and amongst our clients there are plenty of them!), Pilates is especially helpful in opening up the chest, broadening the collarbones, relieving tension in the lower back, and realigning the skull.
WHAT IS YOUR ROUTINE AT WORK TO STAY HEALTHY?
At home I have a small amount of oat cereal with my kids before coming to work. When I arrive, I’ll have a hard-boiled egg and some grapefruit or watermelon. For lunch I have a zucchini omelet and sweet potatoes. I prefer to exercise in the morning but on days that I am working I cannot, so then I do my Pilates in the afternoon. I have a red apple for a snack and carrots and celery later in the day depending on how late I’m working. I drink as much water as possible.
Most importantly, I take breaks when I’m working on problems and just focus on my breathing. This helps in teaching to remain conscious of staying grounded and connected, and in working at my desk, remembering to stay in my body even when my brain is racing.
CAN YOU SHARE WITH US SOME OF YOUR FAVORITE NEW YORK PLACES?
I am committed to healthy beauty products and so I shop almost exclusively at my own Erika Bloom boutique, where I know products are parabens free, phalate free, non-toxic, and all-natural. Some of my favorite products right now are Ila body lotions and face oils, Tata Harper Regenerating Cleanser, and Lavanila Deodorant. For make-up, I order exclusively from the website Sprit Beauty Lounge that upholds the same standards for healthy products. They offer samples so you can try before you buy and they have an amazing range of selections.
AND A PLACE TO INDULGE?
I love interesting chocolates. Dark chocolate with dried fruits and spices are my favorite. I pick them up anywhere I find them. I also love ordering the Red Jacket Orchards CSA boxes that come with a selection of local fruit and cheese like cherries, plums, blueberries: delicious!
ANY ADVICE TO SHARE WITH OUR READERS TO IMPROVE THEIR POSTURE AT WORK?
Sit on a physioball if you can. If you cannot, then make sure that you have a chair where you can firmly ground the soles of your feet into the floor. It should be high enough that your knees are slightly below your hips. This may mean sitting forward from the back, which is fine. Your phone and computer should not be placed in a way that means you have to twist your spine to work. Position your workspace in a way that encourages a tall, neutral spine. Get up and take plenty of walking breaks, whether it’s a walk through the office, or if you’re as ideally located as we are, a brisk walk through the park at lunchtime. Movement is crucial throughout the workday!