Finding Your Pilates People

I first shared my Pilates exercise on Instagram in the early December 2017. Boy, what a nerve-racking experience that was. I remember I was overwhelmed with doubt and fear. What if people laughed at me? What if they thought it was a joke? I had every reason to be anxious.

by Melly Sutjitro (@e_mellyberry)

I was a newbie in every sense, with less than a year experience under my belt. I could barely hold a plank. My side-bend was a no-show. My arms and legs shook like they were in some sort of a dance. And don’t get me started on my swinging belly. Prior to Pilates, I was the kind of person who hated working out. I hated gym (still hate it). I hated cardio (still hate it). Exercising,according to past-me, was an act of torture. When I started Pilates in March 2017, I had no intention to do it regularly, let alone fall in love with it. But I did, that sneaky Pilates. I did fall in love with it.

So yeah, posting an exercise activity of any kind was a big deal for me. The quality of my Pilates is nowhere near those I see on Instagram and YouTube. They are done by Pilates and health experts. These people have no flaws in what they do. Their movement is precise and controlled. If I listened to my logic, I would’ve deleted my early Pilates recordings. Fortunately—or unfortunately depending on how you see it—I’m also a vain person. Just kidding. No, really, I am. I wanted to share my love for Pilates with the world. My world may be small, but it’s still a world. I wanted to introduce Pilates to others like me, you know, mortals who loathe working out. So I clicked the submit button. Before I knew it, I had many more recordings of my daily Pilates routine. I couldn’t stop. Pilates is an addictive thing. I started following a few Pilates accounts. I listened to the conversation, learned new things, and participated in challenges the best I could with my limited skills.

Do the fear and doubt go away? No. They are there every single time, yelling insecurities at me. They do not go away. I just choose to ignore them.

Beautiful and unexpected things happened after that first click. The Pilates community in Instagram responded warmly to the videos and the conversation I shared. Yes, those same perfectly sculpted Pilates gods and goddesses. Their words are always kind and encouraging. Some even take a step further in coaching me. They boost my confidence. I’m constantly motivated by the community’s energy in spreading the love of Pilates and the awareness about our body and mind.

Most importantly, they don’t laugh at me. They don’t laugh at me. At. All. They don’t think my less-than-perfect Pilates is a joke.

I’ve been worried over nothing. I don’t delete any videos I made of my Pilates practices anymore. I no longer care about what other people might think. I’m completely aware that social media might not always be friendly to me. Sometimes we would encounter haters and bullies. I apply the same breathing method we do in Pilates when dealing with them, with self-doubt and negativity too. Inhale and exhale. Inhale the good, exhale the bullshit. What I am trying to say is, bullies will always find ways to attack others, haters will always find flaws to hate, and our own insecurity will always try to poison us with disapproval.

Don’t let them win. Don’t let the idea of people laughing at you stop you from feeling good about yourself and your achievement. Don’t even let your own self-doubt stop you from progressing. I’m glad I shared my first video. I’m glad I kept all my Pilates recordings with me because every time I flip through them, I see improvement in me. And isn’t that the sweetest thing? So go ahead and do you. Do what you love and love what you do. The right people will come. They will stay. They will become your people.

Happy Pilates, everyone.