Pilates Salt Lake City
Whether you are a strong athlete or looking to overcome an injury or get back into shape, the Pilates method is a great method for anyone looking to build core strength, flexibility, and endurance.
“It’s a great system that targets the core, which stabilizes your spine,” said Camilo Jimenez, owner of Move Better Pilates and Training Studio in Foothill Village. “Pilates also improves strength and mobility, including increasing the capacity of the joint to do the normal ranges of motion.”
That capacity degrades over time through injury, exercising incorrectly, and even day-to-day living, Jimenez said.
“In our group classes, we have sequences that are built to accommodate most needs,” he said. Because his studio has three machines, even group classes feel semi-private.
“Because we keep class sizes so small, we can teach more complex movements that require more attention,” he said.
Helping with Injury or Post-Surgery Recovery
Jimenez has worked with hundreds of injured and unconditioned people. “They come to me in pain, either from not exercising, exercising excessively or because of injury,” he said. “And they are in distress or confusion over what is wrong.”
Some come to him with pain so severe, they have already scheduled orthopedic surgeries. “They had been improperly addressing their injuries,” he said. “And with a few tweaks in the way they move, they have walked away from undergoing those surgeries.”
When you move better, you feel better, Jimenez said. “Meaning, when you understand simple and fundamental aspects of how we move, we can and should apply it to all of our activities,’” he said. “ I’m a firm believer of reprogramming the mind. Sometimes I can alter that through movement.”
Pilates helps with post-surgery rehabilitation, as well.
Jimenez himself underwent hip surgery five years ago. “Afterward, the pilates equipment facilitated my movement in a way that seemed otherwise difficult.”
Jimenez also offers private classes at his studio for more one-on-one attention.
“Our private classes are completely customized to the needs of the client,” he said.
The private class first entails an initial assessment of spine mechanics, pelvic stability, and breathing efficiency.
“It’s an overall x-ray of movement, in a way; a very mindful and conscious method,” Jimenez said. “For me, exercise is very superficial unless you incorporate all the elements that make movement.”
Behind the Scenes
Jimenez first started a Pilates studio 14 years ago in Colombia, where not many people had access to Pilates equipment. “So we were one of the pioneers in my country,” he said.
He gained his work ethic from his parents, who knew how to work hard. “Although they never like the idea of me being in the fitness industry, I ended up doing okay.”
Jimenez considers his biggest obstacle to be himself. “I like to take responsibility for everything that happens in my life,” he said. “Sometimes I fail at it but I work hard to stay clear on that.”
Dancing is close to his heart, although he’s never considered himself a dancer. “My technique is poor but my soul is big,” he said. “I dance from my heart and my feet are my tool.”
He has also trained in martial arts, been a Zumba instructor trainer, and has earned almost every certification available in the fitness industry.
After running several Pilates studios in Colombia, he made his way north to Miami and then West to Utah, where he opened Move Better Pilates and Training Studio a year and a half ago.
“I’m a Columbian leaving a mark in the United States,” he said, adding that being an immigrant has had its challenges.
“Being such a long distance from home can sometimes be hard,” he said. “I miss my family, the food, and close friends. But I have met wonderful people in the United States that have provided me with pieces of their lives, making life here more accessible.”
Living in Salt Lake City
Living in Salt Lake City has also provided tremendous moments of realization. “I’ve realized the importance of really looking into who I am as an individual and into my responsibility to myself and to others.”
Utah has provided its own unique difficulties, he said. “Utah is a very complex place in terms of the cultural-religion standpoint. It’s hard to be in a state that is mostly ruled under the standards of a religious organization.”
The first class Jimenez taught at the Move Better Pilates and Training Studio still stands out a particularly great moment, along with getting the coffee machine. “It sounds stupid, but having my students over for coffee was a really special moment to share. It’s more than just a drink,” he said.
But it has been a challenge to feel tucked away in a saturated pilates market. “I’m working on delivering more efficient classes,” he said. “I’m implementing more elements of strength training into the Pilates repertoire.”