Lisa Laity’s dad wasn’t too far off the mark when he joked that she went to school for PE and to eat her lunch. A longtime avid athlete, she has played tennis, basketball, netball, hockey and badminton, as well as competing in athletics and cross country at a regional level – oh, and spending any spare time on the water with her family of keen waterskiers.
These days Lisa, mum to two young children, is no less busy or committed to movement, but is focusing on the power of pilates and sharing it with her local community through her business Seed Pilates, in Raglan.
The 35-year-old sports an impressive background in journalism, but her qualifications also include being a Polestar Pilates Comprehensive Studio graduate – in Mat, Reformer, Trapeze Table, Wunda & Exo Chairs, Ladder Barrel & Spine Corrector.
She is also an anatomy and physiology graduate, and a Les Mills certified Group Fitness Instructor.
If that list alone is enough to make you feel exhausted, Lisa’s pilates classes are likely to invigorate and motivate. Seed Pilates is Raglan’s first Reformer Pilates studio and opened its doors in June 2018 from humble beginnings.
“Friends of ours kindly let us set up our one Reformer and a bunch of mats and I started teaching out of a room in their house,” says Lisa.
“To coincide with this, an article ran in our local newspaper. That weekend the inquiries started and haven’t stopped. We were blown away by the response.”
Six months later and the aptly named Seed Pilates grew to the extent of moving into a new studio, complete with three Balanced Body reformers, and a Group Fitness studio, Flux Fitness.
Today Seed offers 1:1 and 2:1 Reformer sessions and small group mat and Reformer classes.
For Lisa the thriving success of her business is the culmination of several of her passions; health and wellbeing, fitness, and training and helping others.
She has rapidly amassed an enthusiastic following of regular clients, from beginners through to experienced pilates attendees.
What Seed Pilates offers:
Our process is different from other studios as we do not offer an online booking system or drop-in class service, rather we form groups based on ability levels.
To ensure clients head into the right class for them, with a thorough understanding of the basics, guiding principles and equipment set up and safety, we offer all new clients a free fitness screening and consult.
During this time we discuss any current/recurring health concerns, injuries and pathologies that may affect their time in the studio. We encourage all new clients to complete a couple of private 1:1 sessionbefore joining a group environment.
We’ve found this process best facilitates clients’ time in the studio, ensuring they get the very best from their session; through a safe and rich movement experience surrounded by others of a similar ability.
What prompted your passion for pilates?
I got into pilates during my second pregnancy, but it was during my post-natal recovery that I really fell in love with it. I went from being an ACC client to becoming a permanent fixture in an awesome weekly group Reformer class and never looked back.
Midway through 2015 after some careful consideration, I bit the bullet and enrolled in Polestar Pilates Comprehensive Studio certification. It was three years of hard work, juggling family life, work and study, but worth every minute.
Common misconceptions about pilates?
It’s all about the core. Sure the core is extremely important, but the takeaway from pilates is so much more. Think greater postural awareness, movement efficiency, strength, tone, flexibility and improved mobility. A greater quality of life through thoughtful, efficient movement and creating good habitual movement patterns in the body.
What do you wish more people knew about pilates?
It’s not a quick fix. Commit to the process and be rewarded.
What is reformer pilates?
The Reformer is a piece of appartus designed by Joseph Pilates. It is essentially a bed which features a spring-loaded moving carriage. The Reformer offers an extensive repertoire of excercises, involving the use of various spring tensions which can either provide assistance or resistance. The reformer can take a client places they wouldn’t go otherwise.
What someone starting out should know?
Come with an open-mind, a willingness to learn and ask questions. Wear comfortable clothes that you can move about in freely and have fun.
What motivates you?
I love the constant challenge pilates provides. As as a mum, I love that it enables me to keep up with the family and enjoy the activities we as a family value with comfort and ease. I feel stronger and more centered as a result of regular practise. It’s amazing what the body can do when it’s moving well.
As an instructor there is nothing more satisfying than watching a client progress. To overcome challenges or limitations and to work together to achieve the goals they have set for themselves. It’s incredibly rewarding.