3rd April 2011
The Luxury Channel meet Ten Pilates’ master and soon-to-be groom, David Higgins….
Ten Pilates is the coolest place to work out in London. Think super-friendly and engaging staff, good music and urban-fresh studios. You get the benefits of a personal trainer and the buzz of a class. Once hooked (and people from Claudia Schiffer to Mario Testino are said to be fans), you will quit your gym membership immediately!
What is the Ten Pilates mission?
Our mission is to educate people about Pilates and teach them how to use their body. We like to help people get the results they want fast. So it is a combination of education and creating a fun and enjoyable environment for people to work out in.
How did you turn this mission into a tangible reality?
It started with our brand and brand values. Ten is people-driven, celebratory and expert. We are upbeat, friendly and fun! The staff here are experts and at the top of their game. We have the best, most knowledgeable staff in the business. Some come from physiotherapy backgrounds, are sports therapists, rehabilitation experts or strength conditioning coaches. It is a people-driven business that is all about the customer and a kick-ass work out!
At Ten Pilates you are an individual not a member. Tell us more?
This came out of the assumption that people don’t want to join memberships anymore. We opened in 2007 just before the recession. We changed people’s perceptions – we are not a personal training gym but we will still give you that one-on-one individual attention within a very small numbered class. We pride ourselves on that experience and the personal experience that everybody receives in that class. It’s not 20 or 40 people in a class because we can’t help that many people at once. Ten is the optimum. Hence the name! The other bonus is that people can pick and choose the classes they attend.
What is Dynamic Pilates?
The concept came about because I come from an exercise rehabilitation background (I studied at Melbourne University). At this time, I was also playing semi-pro Australian football. Unfortunately, I got injured and I was not able to play any more. I had to rehabilitate myself back up to speed again. It was at this point that I came across Pilates. The ‘‘philosophy’’ or thinking behind Pilates is in the focus on very isolated and specific movements. Teaching your body how to move appealed to me because of my rehabilitation background. I started doing basic Pilates but it got a bit boring and repetitive. I wanted to work out a way to ramp it up a bit! So I started adapting the flow of exercises on the reformer. It took me five or six years to work out what worked and what would not work. I then moved to LA and found that my clients enjoyed my modified flow of exercises. Ten is way ahead of the game and we still have lots of international interest. We have a studio in Moscow and we are looking to go global. We already have three places in London – in Notting Hill, Mayfair and Chiswick.
What is the effect of Ten Pilates on the body?
It is all about pre-habilitation – preventative exercise. Ten Pilates customers are leaner, more toned, with a strong core. We work you to fatigue and get the results that will make you lean and not bulky. Ten Pilates will also increase your flexibility and mobility. We ‘‘wake up’’ isolated muscle areas, then integrate it (leg circles or lunges, for example) and then we stretch it off. Isolate, integrate, stretch. This is the general flow of how we operate. The final thing we focus on is establishing a mind/body link. People use exercise generally as a means to escape. We try and connect the mind and the body. You have the ability to turn on every muscle in your body. You have the ability to do that, but people do not realise that they do or don’t think that they can. We make sure that people do not fall apart. If people can look after themselves now, it will help them aesthetically to look fantastic but if we educate as many people as we can, we will help people change the way they move and their body awareness for later life.
What about more cardio-based exercise?
To support our Pilates classes, we have the Cardiolates workout that uses the latest Spin bikes alongside our trademark reformer beds. This is results-driven and people will feel the benefits fast! It is hugely popular and this came from our clients. They asked us if we could introduce some sort of cardio class. We asked what machine they would be interested in doing cardio on and the resounding answer was spinning!
Having done ten classes or so, what is the next step?
To get to the next level, we usually advise a thirty minute one-on-one personal training session. Here we can give you an assessment of what you need to be focusing on when you are in the classes. Then you are equipped to go to the next class level from beginners to intermediate. It’s a 35% increase and will clear the cobwebs out and keep the body responsive!
What is next?
We have a new studio opening up in the West End so that will be number four in London, maintaining a luxury and effective workout environment for our clients that keeps us ahead of the competition!
What is luxury?
My lovely fiancé is very good at answering this question. I think that luxury for me is not about the expense – it is about the experience or the feeling that you get when you either purchase something, receive something or enjoy something, whether it is a service or a product that is high quality.
Top Health And Fitness Tips For Brides And Grooms
David is well placed in this regard, as he too is busy preparing for his summer wedding….
Setting up a wedding is such an overwhelming experience. You have your family coming, your friends are going to be there and the day is all about you (and your partner). So you have a lot of decisions to make. My first tip would be:
ALONE TIME: make sure you have some time for yourself. Everybody is on your case, whether it is the invitation guy or the events co-ordinator. Whatever it is – try and find some time during the week to make some time for yourself.
FOOD: be mindful of your food intake! What you eat is how you are going to feel; it is how you will sleep and how you will look.
WATER: is hugely important – keep yourself hydrated because you are going to be speaking a lot, thinking a lot and burning a lot of calories. You are going to need a lot of water for the body to function properly.
SLEEP: is very important! Don’t be forever tired – make time for sleep.
NON-NEGOTIABLES: know when you can talk about the wedding and know when you cannot talk about the wedding. Structure will bring you calmness.
FITNESS: obviously brides and grooms want to look their best on their wedding day so exercise is vital. The guy wants the broad chest and shoulders so that the suit will look tailored. The girls will often want toned arms, for example. Again, if you can keep it as a structured thing: Monday, Wednesday and Friday for example – it is only an hour! So your body only really needs three hours of movement a week to be maintained. It is a pretty insane machine! Exercise will also lead to less stress.
EXERCISE TOGETHER as a couple. If you want to do your first dance, for example, that is a nice time for both of you to have a bit of fun and a giggle and actually exercise at the same time. A couple of hours of dancing – trust me, that’s a work-out!
Ten Pilates – Further Information
Individual classes start from £27.00.
Ten Pilates Bridal Package: designed to help you reach your goals and stay motivated:
30 classes = £900.00 (includes free consultation and six personal training sessions over three months).
20 classes = £600.00 (includes free consultation and four personal training sessions over two months).
10 classes = £300.00 (includes free consultation and 2 personal training sessions over one month).