02 Mar Instructor Spotlight!
Michelle is a GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS® Master Trainer and the official teacher of the GYROTONIC® Applications for Equestrians workshop. Always perfecting her craft, she studies regularly with Juliu Horvath, the inventor of the GYROTONIC® Expansion System. Michelle is also a graduate of the Kane School and a member of the original group of Pilates instructors to be certified by the Pilates Method Alliance. She was a long-time student of the late “first generation” Pilates Master teacher Kathleen Stanford Grant, and is certified in both pre-natal and post-partum Pilates, as well as Equilates—Pilates-based cross-training for equestrians developed by Betsy Steiner. Michelle studied Kinesthetic Anatomy and the Biomechanics of Motion with Irene Dowd, the Alexander Technique with the late Marjorie Barstow, and taijiquan (tai chi chuan) with Dee Chao. Michelle began practicing Hatha Yoga in her teens. She currently studies Qi Gong and Ba Gua Zhang with Tom Bisio and regularly attends continuing education workshops. Michelle is a graduate of the Theatre department at the University of Delaware and the acting program at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco.
Favorite Muscle: “Psoas — I love this quote about the psoas from Anatomy Trains by Tom Myers:
‘The top of the psoas blends with the crura and other posterior attachments of the diaphragm, all of which blend with the anterior longitudinal ligament (ALL), running up the front of the vertebral bodies and discs.
The connection between the posas and diaphragm – just behind the kidneys, adrenal glands, and solar plexus, and just in front of the major spinal joint of the thoracicolumbar junction (TLJ: T12-L1) – is a critical point of both support and function in the human body. It joins the ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ of the body, it joins breathing to walking, assimilation to elimination, and is, of course, a center for the ‘gut reaction’.’
In the GYROTONIC® Expansion System connecting deeply through the psoas helps create suppleness, power, and dynamic stability.”
Preferred Prop: “The Foam Roller because of its versatility: it can be used as a massage and myofascial release tool; it can be used to challenge balance and stability making even simple exercises more fun and demanding; it can be used to provide proprioception, to facilitate proper alignment, and to promote increased range of motion.”
Favorite Location to fly to for GYROTONIC® trainings:
“Yspertal, Austria (where I’ve actually gone for 3 trainings) or Kauai (where I’ve never been but where I’d like to organize a retreat).”
“Filet Mignon is a slice of cow psoas. Pork tenderloin is pig psoas. The psoai of quadrupeds are deliciously tender. The human psoas – the product of a bipedal existence – would make for a very tough dish indeed – perhaps not the only compelling reason to eschew it as a dinner choice.”
Michelle is teaching the GYROKINESIS® Foundation Training, as well as the GYROTONIC® Pre-Training, GYROTONIC® Foundation Training and GYROTONIC® Update Course starting this spring; read up on all course information and register now!