As a Chinese medicine practitioner for Legacy Wellness, Monica has a deep appreciation for the yin and yang of things. And, as a new mother, she knows she needs more yin than yang; something restorative and reflective.
“You’re in different positions being a mom, after carrying a baby for nine months, breast feeding and then this strange animal hanging on me all the time,” she says. “Your bones are in a different place. Your sacral joints are never going to go back. I want to get comfortable in this new body.”
The Gyrotonic method instantly made sense to Monica, like coming home. Though she uses the word ‘intuition’ sparingly, the gentle, rhythmic movements of the Gyrotonic system made deep intuitive sense to her. “I don’t have to kill myself at the gym. That’s what everybody thinks they have to do — a treadmill, watching TV. [Gyrotonic] is putting me back in my own skin after nine months of carrying a baby, breast feeding and having this strange little animal hanging on me all the time. It helps my mommy posture by gently putting me back together.”
The energetic and physical aspects of Gyrotonic felt right to Monica. But as a former ballet dancer, Gyrotonic also appealed to her on an aesthetic level. “I felt like I was back in ballet, but it felt whole, not restrictive. I didn’t have a stern ballet teacher, hounding me about perfection. I got to move again without the critique. This healing movement allowed me to make movement as beautiful as ballet but in a safe, restorative way.”
The Gyrotonic method does not have an external measure of “perfection.” It takes you where you are now to help you feel and discover fluid movement for yourself. You don’t need to be a dancer or an artist to learn graceful, fluid movement. Gyrotonic movements are expressive — even poetic — as Gyrotonic Master Trainer Dominika Gaines said several years ago during my 12-day foundation training. A movement can be mechanical or a meaningful gesture, “a longing for something,” my first Gyrotonic teacher Christian Twigg once said.
As with Chinese medicine, says Monica, “Gyrotonic is an art form. The way we understand the body is poetic. It’s yin and yang. In Chinese medicine, Gyrotonic is the root essence, the deep and dark, creating health deep within the joints.”
All of us have a longing to express something poetic. And to do that in a fun, safe way is perhaps the best of all worlds. It’s like a jungle gym for adults. You get to be childlike again. It’s anti treadmill,” says Monica. “Anti-boring.”