Today’s post is from Candice at Chia Seed Me. When Candice first introduced herself (on the bus to the Frito Lay tour) she said she was a yoga teacher, which I thought was pretty cool. But when I got to talk to her later, she said she was actually a PiYo instructor. I was instantly excited- PiYo is one of my favorite classes at the gym. Though I try & try again, yoga doesn’t mesh 100% with my personality- I much prefer Pilates. PiYo, however, is like the ‘Heather version’ of yoga- just enough to get the calming & stretching, but not so much that I lose my attention span.
But I’ll let Candice tell you all about it:
Hey ‘with a Side of Sneakers’ readers!
I met Heather on the first day of the Healthy Living Summit and loved her instantly! I’m so excited about the opportunity to guest post on her lovely blog.
Heather asked me to write a post about PiYo (pronounced Pie-yo), and I jumped at the chance for two reasons:
- Many people don’t know what PiYo is
- I absolutely love it and want to spread the love:)
I have been a runner for a couple of years now, and finally decided about six months ago that I wanted to give yoga a chance. I knew it was supposed to be good for stretching and strengthening, as well as fostering a mind/body connection.
So, I checked out the class schedule at my gym and found that there was only one yoga class per week. One! I did, however, also notice another class called PiYo. I figured why not try it?!
That week I went to both the yoga class as well as the PiYo class and absolutely loved both! Over the next several months, I went to every single class religiously. The more classes I attended, the more I wanted to go back because I was noticing several things starting to happen.
First, my runs were improving. I’ve never been good about taking time to stretch after runs, but after going to PiYo and yoga just three times a week I noticed my body getting stronger, more flexible and more resilient.
Second, my attitude improved. Taking those three hours a week to do something for myself made me feel more positive about my body, and it made me more motivated to take care of my body in other ways, such as eating healthy food. It caused me to begin loving my body for what it could do for me rather than focusing on how it looked.
What is it?
Now, we all know what yoga is…but what is PiYo?
PiYo is a hybrid, athletic workout, which combines the mind/body practices of yoga and Pilates, as well as the principles of stretch, strength training, conditioning and dynamic movement. During a PiYo class, you will find yourself standing in a yoga pose one minute, and down on the floor in a Pilates pose the next!
It is a pre-designed class that will really get your heart rate going as it features various styles of yoga and Pilates in continuous movement and flow from one exercise to another. Sometimes I describe PiYo as a hyper version of yoga, but with the benefits of deep breathing, balance, stretching, strengthening and relaxation. And to top it all off, the music is awesome!
During this time of attending classes, I was also going through a major life change. I decided to leave my job at the time in order to pursue something that I could be passionate about and that didn’t leave me feeling drained at the end of the day. I was making a two hour commute at the time.
While I knew teaching classes at the gym was never going to make me rich, I would get paid to exercise (what?!), and it would provide a little bit of extra money each month. Plus, many gyms offer free membership to instructors!
While I was interested in both yoga and PiYo certification, I decided to start with PiYo for a number of reasons:
- First, I love the format of fusing together the benefits of both Pilates and yoga; it’s unique, mainstream and fun!
- Second, it is less expensive. For under $200 you walk away fully certified to teach classes and with your first pre-designed class.
- Third, it is a pre-designed format. Once you are certified, you have the freedom to use the exact lessons/music that have already been created, use pieces of the lessons/music, or get creative and form your own! I love that I can start off with a pre-made lesson and music and then change it up as I become more confident and experienced.
- Fourth, it is less rigorous than yoga certification. Starting with PiYo gave me the opportunity to get my feet wet as an instructor and get some experience before dropping a lot of money and time. I have now registered to become yoga certified in September as well, but I’m so glad that I’ve already been teaching PiYo classes.
Since I started teaching, I have grown to love it more and more. It is so refreshing to go to class and see other women (and sometimes men!) challenging themselves in new ways and getting better with every class.
Well, I hope I’ve convinced you that you should head straight to the nearest gym immediately and try PiYo! I kid, I kid. Though I do hope that you all feel more informed about what PiYo is and that you’ll try it out if you get the chance. I promise, you will love it!!
If you’re interested in learning more about the certification process, feel free to visit my blog or contact me at Candice@chiaseedme.com. You can also find out more by visiting the official PiYo website.
It’s so nice to “meet” all of you! And thanks again for having me, Heather. You rock!