This week we chatted with Alison Denham, graduate of The Pilates Center, Boulder’s Advanced Teacher Training Program. Alison discovered Pilates when she was 17 and in dance school. Now, as a teacher and TPC grad, she is passionate about guiding and empowering clients to find functional movement and alignment. Alison lives in Vancouver, Canada where she teaches at three different studios, including Kalijo Pilates – the only TPC Licenced Teacher Training Studio in Canada, and which is owned by none other than Alison’s sister, Katherine!
Hi Alison, how are you today?
Hi Amanda, I’m well thanks!
Where are you and what are you up to right now?
I’m in my living room lounging around on my floor. I just put my daughter Zoya to bed and am relaxing after a day of teaching.
How did you find out about TPC?
My older sister Katherine Denham, who is a teacher trainer with TPC and has a host studio, introduced me to The Pilates Center, Boulder. She was doing the program when I was doing the Stott Pilates method training.
What was your reason for choosing to train with TPC?
I was unsatisfied, frustrated and feeling a major lack of confidence with the Stott method. The classical work taught by TPC made such profound changes for me, and so quickly, that I just had to do the program!
Did you look at other schools?
I did partial training with Stott Pilates then switched over to doing the full advanced program with The Pilates Center, Boulder.
What was it about TPC that made it stand out from the other Pilates training schools you looked at?
It was the rigour of The Pilates Center, Boulder’s program that intrigued me; it was so intensive, so thorough, with great depth of connection to the source, in other words all the things I was missing from my other training. I also loved the passion of the teacher trainers and fellow trainees.
Why do you think TPC is the best option for people wanting to become Pilates teachers?
I think the demand of the program digs into people and cracks them open. You have to go through so much physically, emotionally and mentally to find your power to get through it. I believe this process creates committed and connected teachers and I recommend it to everyone wanting to become a Pilates teacher.
What was / is your favourite things about TPC’s teacher training programme?
I really loved how much mentorship TPC’s program has. I loved having observed teachings, advisor meetings and lots of time with the other teacher trainees. I felt so supported by all the offerings of the program. Also, having to do so many hours of Pilates really integrated the work into my body, and I definitely feel I can teach from personal experience of what the work is.
What do you think your experience at TPC has given you most?
Confidence and knowing, knowing that there is always more to learn and confidence that I can teach from right where I am in my own Pilates journey. The Pilates Center’s teacher training program secured a sense of endless curiosity in me about the Pilates method and about the human body.
Where did you train?
I did my training through Pilates from the Center, in North Vancouver, Canada, back when it was a host studio for TPC teacher training.
What would you say to someone who is considering training with TPC?
I would tell them that they would love it, that it is like taking a trip around the world to discover things you could never imagine. I would tell them that it is tough and rewarding and that they won’t regret it, they will find what they are looking for.
What is your favourite Pilates exercise and / or apparatus and why?
Chair! It helped me find the hip strength I needed to get out of the holding in my back. It sorts me out whenever my back is acting up and I love how strong it makes me. Upside down push up and handstand pike are probably my favourite exercises.
Are you a Host Advisor or Licenced Studio owner? If so, how do you enjoy these roles?
I was a host advisor before I had my daughter in 2014 and I plan on attending TPC’s Host advisor training in March 2019. I will be working alongside my sister Katherine on the Sunshine Coast and in Vancouver and I am really looking forward to having a more formal role to work with trainees, I find it very rewarding and fun!