Based in Lexington, KY, Johnna Wilford is a writer, running coach, and POP Pilates teacher. She helps LEXINGTON community members explore the city through sweat.

Why I decided to add POP Pilates teaching to my run coaching

Why I decided to add POP Pilates teaching to my run coaching

It’s official! I am a certified POP Pilates instructor! I’m reaching out to different places in town and hoping to start teaching in-person classes soon. (In the meantime, feel free to check out my fitness services if you want to book a session with me!)

I’ve had many people ask me what exactly POP Pilates is. I basically say that it’s pilates set to pop music. Which is true, but some people don’t even quite know what pilates is. And for those who do, my description of it doesn’t really explain it all.

So what’s Pilates?

Developed by Joseph H. Pilates in the early 20th century, Pilates is a body conditioning method that was originally born from the creator’s desire to increase his own health and athleticism.

And what’s POP Pilates?

POP Pilates® is an incredible fusion of ab-chiseling and total body defining moves choreographed to your favorite Top 40 hits. This intense, mat-based workout challenges students to rhythmically flow from one exercise to the next, developing a rock solid core while leaving no muscle untouched. This format takes classical Pilates to the next level like you’ve never seen before.

So how is POP Pilates different than regular Pilates?

While POP Pilates® moves all originate from classical Pilates, the class design, relationship with music, sequencing and reps, differ from reformer classes and traditional mat classes. The fundamentals of breathing, core engagement and powerhouse-based movements are shared, however, the emphasis on moving to the beat of pop music is what makes POP Pilates® so unique. Participants love that each 55 min. class is like a “dance on the mat.”

And why did you decide to get certified?

There are so many benefits to Pilates. Core strength, improved posture and alignment, stronger muscles, alleviated back pain, increased flexibility, agility and range of motion, plus body awareness and acknowledging the mind-body connection.

And all of these things can improve my running! After all, you need a strong core and good posture to run efficiently. Elongating your muscles through Pilates could lengthen your gait and make you more flexible. And Pilates strengthens your legs in a different way than running does, which drastically reduces your risk of injury. I think it’s a no brainer!

Now, why didn’t I just become a regular Pilates instructor? Because honestly, POP Pilates is the form of Pilates I like the most. It’s fun! It seems easier to endure the tough holds because I can focus on the music. And as one of my best friends said when I explained what this was, it was basically made for me.

While the health and wellness industry talks about the benefit of body awareness, I feel like it does so in a very calm and meditative way. And anyone who knows me knows that’s just not who I am. I am all about becoming more aware of your body, of your emotions, and connecting deeper to yourself in order to understand why you make the decisions you do. But I don’t do it through crystals, or by finding my inner goddess, or any of that stuff. I do it by staying connected to the real world - and the real world loves its energetic music!

I’m excited to add this to my repertoire. Feel free to reach out if you want to try POP Pilates (or running for yourself!

Free Workout Classes: December 17th-23rd

Free Workout Classes: December 17th-23rd

Success with (online) dating may include these mindsets

Success with (online) dating may include these mindsets