Mary Bowen, Pilates Elder A Brilliant Multi-Faceted Jewel. By Kateryna Smirnova
«…Among Pilates teachers, the artistic Mary Bowen is known by all. Her appearance does not remain unnoticed. It doesn’t matter what she’s doing – teaching Pilates or just walking into a restaurant – Mary always attracts attention.
What is her secret? We have carefully compiled here for our readers many interesting and instructive stories from her life, written by Mary herself and her friends.
Personal Foreword from Mary Bowen
I come to you from Connecticut, NYC and Massachusetts in the U.S.A. representing 58 years of living Pilates, beginning in 1959, six and a half years twice a week with Joe and Clara themselves.
My main thrust in Pilates and everything I do is to stay creatively focused. The whole method changed for me dramatically when I entered my 70’s, after 41 years of living Pilates from the age of 29 and after 25 years of teaching Pilates since I was 45. If you are healthy, not necessarily wealthy, but wise, by the 70’s the ego has stepped to the side. There is no more to prove. You are now free to explore. It was then that I gave over the leadership in Pilates to my body, to the spine itself and stopped the constant directing of the body from the mind. That change in attitude was like discovering a whole new method.
My body lightened, lengthened and was endlessly inventive, especially when it could move to classical music. Being with my body in a less directive fashion has filled me with joy and still does. My Pilates is creative…which Joe supported in me from the start. When he saw me make up something, he would say «That’s good! Just be sure you are using your whole body!»
My hope is to inspire many of you throughout the world to expect a more satisfying and brilliant Pilates for yourselves as the years pile on for you. As a Jungian psychoanalyst (46 years) and a Pilates teacher (41 years) combining the two in 1995 and naming the combination PILATES PLUS PSYCHE, I ask you to realize that you are on two equally important journeys… one into PILATES, the other into yourSELF! As the most senior Pilates Elder still teaching, 88 this past January, I share with you a personal adage: «Your Pilates and all of you will improve with aging…»
Full text available in 'Pilates4you Journal «Pilates Plus Psyche»'