Studio HIGHLIGHTS: Going Wireless

Technology moves forward so quickly. Gone are the days of my awesome, giant, silver colored CD boom box that I rocked out with of most of the 90s. I've been connecting our WiFi network, our HiFi network, wireless SONOS stereo system, computers, networking printers, iPads, Spotify, robotic vacuums, even a wireless scale that analyzes your body composition (more on that in another post). It's amazing how much I can control from my smart phone phone.  

Our digital check in station where clients sign into classes when they arrive in the studio. This frees up our instructors so they can spend more time with clients and less time doing paperwork.

Our digital check in station where clients sign into classes when they arrive in the studio. This frees up our instructors so they can spend more time with clients and less time doing paperwork.

As you enter the studio there is an iPad check in station for students to check in if they preregistered for class or to add yourself to the class if you are walking in. Just a click of a button and you're checked in! Very convenient both for student and instructor so the instructor. The instructor can spend more time and attention getting their students set up and ready for class, rather than doing paper work on the computer.

Our music is both wireless and limitless. Each of our studios are equipped with high quality SONOS HiFi stereo systems that communicate with both our computers and smartphones so instructors can play music either from their personal playlists, or utilize our Spotify account where they have access to millions of songs. There is music available that suits anyone's taste.

One of our SONOS speakers, piping in awesome beats to keep you motivated during class!   

One of our SONOS speakers, piping in awesome beats to keep you motivated during class!

 

Our public WiFi network is now active and available for clients to utilize if they are waiting for a class or need WiFi for whatever reason. The network is called SOMA-Surfs and the password is posted in our studio. The password will be changed intermittently to keep our network efficient for our clients.

We would also like to welcome the two newest members of the SOMA Movement Team. Gizmo and Zoomba, our two iRobot Robotic vacuums who work tirelessly each night to keep our studio floors spick and span.  Gizmo is a dark and handsome robot. Zoomba is a sleek, white robot.

We'll keep updating our studios with more technology to make our clients' and instructors' experiences more seamless and enjoyable. 

Studio Highlight: Trapeze Table Group Classes Starting Now!

Joseph Pilates working out on his bednasium, the precursor to the Cadillac/Trapeze Table. The Cadillac evolved from the bednasium with the addition of taller posts and overhead, horizontal bars. The Trapeze table was nicknamed the Cadillac because of its versatility being used for everything from precision rehabilitation to high level athletic training.

Joseph Pilates working out on his bednasium, the precursor to the Cadillac/Trapeze Table. The Cadillac evolved from the bednasium with the addition of taller posts and overhead, horizontal bars. The Trapeze table was nicknamed the Cadillac because of its versatility being used for everything from precision rehabilitation to high level athletic training.

Pilates’ first invention was called the bednasium. During and shortly after World War I, Joseph Pilates was interned with other German citizens in a British prison camp. He worked as a rehabilitation nurse and took the bedsprings from mattresses and attached them to the headboard and footboards of the bed frames of bedridden soldiers and taught those injured soldiers to do rehabilitation exercises using the springs as resistance. Legend has it, that no soldiers died on his ward while he worked with them.

One of SOMA's Pilates Reformers converted into a Tower Unit. The Tower unit plus the elevated mat below it approximate half a Trapeze table. The Tower unit has a push through bar just like the Trapeze Table and additional springs can be attached for arms and legs. However, as the Tower Unit does not have overhead, horizontal bars, it lacks the versatility to suspend the body as the Trapeze Table does.

One of SOMA's Pilates Reformers converted into a Tower Unit. The Tower unit plus the elevated mat below it approximate half a Trapeze table. The Tower unit has a push through bar just like the Trapeze Table and additional springs can be attached for arms and legs. However, as the Tower Unit does not have overhead, horizontal bars, it lacks the versatility to suspend the body as the Trapeze Table does.

The bednasium evolved to become the Trapeze Table consisting of four vertical posts at the corners of a firm, raised mat/mattress as well as two horizontal, overhead poles. The Trapeze Table developed the nickname, the “Cadillac,” as Pilates felt that the Trapeze Table, like the car it’s named after, had all the bells and whistles you could possibly want in an apparatus. There are so many elements to the machine: leg springs, arm springs, fuzzy loops to hang from, a push-through bar to stretch you out, and even a trapeze. This versatile piece of equipment can be used for everything from precision rehabilitation to high level athletic training where the overhead poles are used to simulate to suspend parts of the body and even to do inversions. The Trapeze table lends itself well to doing asymmetric exercises as one’s limbs are attached independently to springs rather than the predominantly symmetric exercises performed on the Reformer.

Many studios offer what are called “Tower classes,” where a Cadillac is simulated by doing exercises with springs attached to a vertical frame on a reformer or a frame attached directly to a wall. These classes are wonderful, but do not approach the variety and versatility of using a full Cadillac as Towers lack the overhead horizontal poles and the namesake Trapeze bar. See the pictures to see the difference between the tower and the full Trapeze table.

SOMA Movement Studio's group Trapeze Tables in our Equipment Gym. Notice the white, fuzzy hanging straps that can be used to suspend the entire body as well as the spring loaded trapeze bars that hang from the overhead, horizontal poles. Tower units are not able to replicate Cadillac exercises that use the overhead, horizontal poles.

SOMA Movement Studio's group Trapeze Tables in our Equipment Gym. Notice the white, fuzzy hanging straps that can be used to suspend the entire body as well as the spring loaded trapeze bars that hang from the overhead, horizontal poles. Tower units are not able to replicate Cadillac exercises that use the overhead, horizontal poles.

SOMA Movement Studio offers two levels of Cadillac Classes. The Beginner/Intermediate class introduces students to the Cadillac, principles of muscle isolation, spine articulation, and how to utilize being partially suspended from the horizontal, overhead poles to maximize activation of stabilizer muscles in the entire body. The Intermediate/Advanced classes increase challenge as the exercises become more airborne and with less support from springs. Upper body strength and core stability are emphasized. Instructor permission is necessary to attend the Intermediate/Advanced Cadillac class.

Announcing the winner of another Facebook Contest!

We announced a contest when we launched our Facebook page. For each 50 people who "like" our Facebook SOMA Movement Studio page, we would randomly chose one person to receive a pack of five Reformer classes. The winner for "likes" 51-100 is Caitlyn Logan, lucky number 67! We are looking forward to meeting you in person in the studio!

We are going to randomly chose another lucky winner for a five pack of Pilates Reformer classes for the next fifty people who "like" our Facebook page. Stay tuned....it might be you!

Equipment Highlight: Stability Chair

A view of the Pilates Wunda Chairs, also known as Stability Chairs in the SOMA Movement Studio Equipment Gym. We offer both group and private training using this versatile piece of equipment.

A view of the Pilates Wunda Chairs, also known as Stability Chairs in the SOMA Movement Studio Equipment Gym. We offer both group and private training using this versatile piece of equipment.

This is an awesome piece of equipment that adds more upright exercises to your Pilates repertoire. While exercises on the Stability chair run the full gamut from rehab to beginner to advanced, it's no secret that Joe Pilates' exercise chair has more than its share of challenging exercises. The stability chair, also known as the Wunda Chair (pronounced Vun-Dah) or low chair (yes, there was also a high chair), has a much smaller footprint which leaves you mostly hanging out in space, having to support your body weight against gravity with minimal support from its spring loaded pedal.

A bit about the history of this versatile piece of equipment. The Wunda chair was originally designed as a home exercise machine for New York City apartments. Early designs actually converted from a chair you could sit on, complete with cushions and trim, to a Wunda chair you could exercise with.

Joe Pilates demonstrating some of the beginner to intermediate exercises on his Wunda chair. Exercises are more upright so they require more balance, coordination and strength than some of the more supported exercises done on the Reformer, Mat or Cadillac/Trapeze Table.

Joe Pilates demonstrating some of the beginner to intermediate exercises on his Wunda chair. Exercises are more upright so they require more balance, coordination and strength than some of the more supported exercises done on the Reformer, Mat or Cadillac/Trapeze Table.

The basic idea of the chair is that there is a seat with a spring loaded pedal in the place where your legs would normally go. This pedal  can be depressed with either your legs or arms to provide resistance or support, depending on the exercise. Additionally, there are optional handles that can be mounted to the sides of the chair for either support during beginner exercises, or to hold your body suspended in air for advanced exercises. Pilates’ background in gymnastics is reflected in some of the chair exercises. Men often prefer this apparatus because of its emphasis on upper-body strength.

What is it like to exercise on the Stability/Wunda chair? Most exercises are done either sitting or standing so gone is the luxury of laying down on Reformer, Mat, or Cadillac. To perform the intermediate and advanced exercises you need good upper-body strength, scapular and pelvic stability, and good control of your core. The upright position of exercises which are great for functional and athletic training.

At SOMA we have a bunch of these wonderful apparatus available for both private and group training. Click on the interactive, three dimensional picture for a closer look at our Stability/Wunda chairs.....Or for an even more up close and personal experience, come into the studio for a free demo!

Welcome Kristen to our SOMA Movement Team

We are excited to announce that Kristen is joining our team of movement instructors here are SOMA Movement Studio! She's been teaching Classical Pilates, both on the mat and on equipment for years. She graduated from Oklahoma City University in 2001 with a BA in Dance. Upon graduation Kristen moved to Las Vegas, NV and performed in such renowned shows as Illusions and Beyond and Legends in Concert. She is a Classically trained and certified Pilates instructor and you can now register for her Reformer classes as well as private sessions with Kristen starting next week. See our online Class Scheduler to register for classes with Krisen.

Reclaiming Your Body: More On the Tabula Rasa

Since The Valley Press article came out earlier this week, I've had a couple people ask me to explain more about SOMA Movement Studio's unique approach to exercise (click here for more on our Philosophy & Mission). Our primary goal at SOMA is to teach people how to move more freely and comfortably; fitness then becomes more enjoyable and exercise comes naturally. 

There is nothing magical about our studio. We don't wave a wand and make fitness easy. If your neck and shoulders are chronically tight and sore, and you walk into one of our Pilates classes for the first time off the street, guess what. You'll be doing Pilates with a tight neck and shoulders. What does make our studio different, is our approach to preparing our clients for exercise. This is what we call re-discovering you're body's tabula rasa state of being.

Tabula rasa is a Latin phrase that literally means blank tablet or blank slate. The concept of the tabula rasa refers to the idea that individuals are born without built-in mental content and that therefore all knowledge comes from experience or perception. This concept dates back to the Greek Philosopher Aristotle, however, it is the English philosopher John Locke's interpretation of the tabula rasa from the 1600s that SOMA uses as an analogy to our initial approach to movement. 

In Locke's philosophy, tabula rasa was the theory that at birth the (human) mind is a "blank slate" without rules for processing data, and that data is added and rules for processing are formed solely by one's sensory experiences. Have you ever watched a healthy, two-year old child run? They have perfect posture, are free of muscle tension, flexible, and move without hesitation. Then as we grow we are introduced to stress, deadlines, early mornings and late nights, unhealthy habits, computers, cell phones, the list goes on. Gradually, the our shoulders round in towards the chest, the head moves forward, the pelvis tucks while the lower back becomes rigid, and our breathing becomes shallow. We begin to avoid certain activities and become complacent with our new state of being. The slate is no longer blank. Evolution now looks like this:

SOMA Movement Studio believes that it is possible to rediscover the freedom of movement we once had as children. We offer movement classes, called Hanna Somatic Movement or Hanna Somatic Re-education, that are focused on identifying the underlying, reflexive muscle activation patterns that interfere our body's ability to move freely. 

A somatic muscle (also known as skeletal muscle), i.e. muscle that moves you (as opposed to the smooth muscle of the vicera or blood vessels), has no internal controls. It simply does what the nervous system (for simplicity's sake, lets say the brain) tells it to do.  A muscle that is cut off from the nervous system is flaccid and loose. Restore input from the nervous system, and the muscle regains tone. A "tight" muscle is one that is simply receiving inappropriate input from the nervous system and so its "tone" is too high. The problem lies in the control center (brain) not in the muscle itself.

So, in order to efficiently address the problem of tight muscles, we must relearn how to control our muscles by consciously overriding these subconscious muscle activation patterns. The mind body connection becomes more of a "how the brain controls the body" connection. Muscles are relaxed through conscious intention rather than by stretching, massaging, or other muscle-centric approaches that only produce fleeting results.  In Hanna Somatic Movement jargon, these subconscious muscle holding patterns are referred to as Somatic Motor Amnesia. So in pictorial terms, our goal at SOMA Movement Studio becomes:

EvolutionSOMA.jpg

So how do you figure out where to start at SOMA Movement Studio? We recommend you start with a Pre-Pilates Introductory Class/Movement Orientation session and then go from there..... Our instructors are always available for advice and clients are encouraged to sample each of the movement regimens that we offer. In general, if you can move freely and comfortably, go ahead and take the more athletically focused classes. If you find you have a restriction or just want to develop better body awareness, try adding Hanna Somatic Movement or Pre-Pilates to the mix. Our classes are designed to be complementary rather than sequential so you can take them in any order at anytime. 

We're Famous! SOMA Movement Studio featured in The Valley Press

Thank you so much to Alison Jalbert, Assistant Editor for writing and The Valley Press and Turley Publications for printing an article about SOMA Movement Studio's opening!  The full page article, which is on page 23 of the May 26th edition of The Valley Press, highlights our amazing team of instructors, our services, and most importantly, our mission and philosophy. Click here for the online version of the article. 

If you have any extra copy of the May 26th edition of The Valley Press with our article in it, feel free to drop it off at our Studio in exchange for a free group class of your choice. We would love a couple extra copies of the article for our Grandmas ;-)

Congratulations to the First Facebook Contest Winner!

We announced a contest when we launched our Facebook page. For each 50 people who "like" our Facebook SOMA Movement Studio page, we would randomly chose one person to receive a pack of five Reformer classes. We are happy to announce that after only a few short weeks we have already surpased 50 "likes" which is awesome. Thank you so much for your support!

We used a random number generator for a number between one and fifty and this week's winner was lucky number #34! Our first winner is Linda Mascaro. We can wait to meet you in person in the studio!

We are going to randomly chose another lucky winner for a five class reformer pack for the next fifty people who "like" our facebook page. Stay tuned....it might be you!

SOMA Movement Studio Gift Certificate Giveaway at Heels & Wheels 5K Road Race and Walk

Proceeds from Wheels and Heels 5K Road Race in Memory of Jamie Kirchner, will be used to create and maintain handicapped accessibility to the river for fishing and other recreation. The race will be run on National Trails Day to bring awareness to the Naugatuck River and Harwinton's portion of the proposed greenway.
The race course has been certified by USA Track & Field.
Certification Number: CT14036JHP

Jamie

Jamie Kirchner was a true competitor. It didn't matter if it was a game of checkers with his
grandmother, arm wrestling with his sister, or competing in the state Special Olympics, he took the Special Olympics pledge to heart. "Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt."

Born with Down Syndrome in 1968, James Clifford Kirchner never let his health problems keep him down. When he was short on stamina, he was long on determination. And his desire to win didn't keep him from cheering on his team mates.

His effervescent spirit encouraging his team mates earned him a TV commercial for Special Olympics, and the "Spirit of Life" award given by the McDonald's Corporation.

Jamie enjoyed traveling, camping, playing cards and checkers, and going to WWF wrestling matches with his brother. While we all miss Jamie since he passed away in 2000 at the age of 31, his spirit of competitiveness, joy, and happiness will always be with us, inspiring us to always strive to do our best--and then some!

Nerdilates (AKA Pilates for Nerds): Reciprocal Inhibition and the Illusive Psoas Release

We are going to geek-it-out for this post and talk a bit about how movement happens and conversly, what happens to our bodies when we don't move normally.

Let's talk about something simple first; elbow flexion and extension. The ulno-humeral joint (humerus is the upper arm bone, the ulna is one of the two forearm bones, the one on the side of your pinky) of the elbow is a simple, hinge joint. Your biceps contracts, the elbow flexes (think bicep curl). Your triceps contracts, your elbow extends.

What we don't normally think about is something called reciprocal inhibition. In order for your elbow to flex when your biceps contracts so you can do a biceps curl, your triceps ALSO has to SIMULTANEOUSLY relax and lengthen to allow the motion to happen. When you then go to extend the elbow and your triceps contracts and shortens to pull your arm straight, the biceps has to SIMULTANEOUSLY relax and lengthen to allow the elbow to straighten/extend. The signal from your brain to the relaxing muscle is referred to as reciprocal (opposite) inhibition. In otherwords, the antagonist muscle is inhibited to allow the agonist muscle (the muscle causing the movement) to contract.

So, what happens when reciprocal inhibition does not work normally. We will use another pair of agonist/antagonist muscles as an example. Say for some reason, your pecs (pectoralis major/minor) and chest muscles got really tight from working on the computer. The muscles that oppose the pecs should be receiving a signal to relax as a result of the constant signal the pecs are receiving to stay tight. So, your rhomboids, muscles of the back that function to bring the shoulder blades together towards the spine, get a signal to relax. What happens next? The pecs continue to tighten, pulling your shoulders further forward, sending more reciprocal inhibitory signals to the rhomboids to relax, which in turn allow the shoulder blades to slide outwards and forwards, eventually leading to rounded, tight shoulders. More on posture in a future post.

The psoas major is an interesting muscle that attaches to the vertebrae of the lumbar spine, travels through the pelvis to attach to the upper femur. Its position in the body contributes to stabilization of the lumbar spine.

The psoas major is an interesting muscle that attaches to the vertebrae of the lumbar spine, travels through the pelvis to attach to the upper femur. Its position in the body contributes to stabilization of the lumbar spine.

Now for the subject of this blog post. The psoas major is a relatively long muscle that connects the lumbar (lower) spine to the femur (thigh bone). The function of the psoas is traditionally thought to flex the hip, though this action has been called into question by modern anatomists and kinesiologists (people who study how muscles move) and now it is thought to have more of a stabilizing effect on the lower back/lumbar spine. In some people (actually lots of people), the psoas muscle is shortened and tight.

The psoas muscles is really hard to isolate and work on eiher through exercise or bodywork. It lies super deep relative to other muscles so any type of psoas massaage is usually uncomfortable and painful because the therapist has to get WAY deep in your groin and belly to access the fibers of the psoas. Even if you can get to the psoas muscle with massage, the psoas is ofen very tender to the touch so psoas massage is uncomfortable to put it mildly. Many muscles function in concert with the psoas so it is near impossible to isolate the psoas through exercise.

However, the psoas can be accessed and relaxed indirectly through reciprocal inhibition. Try this. Lie down on your back with your feet a little more than shoulder width apart and a low pillow or mat supporting your head. Have a clock or a stopwatch near by that you can see without moving or sitting up. Now that you are comfortable, squeeze/contract your tush as hard as you can and hold it for a minute. That gluteus maximus needs to be contracted to the MAX. This is easier said than done. If you are really squeezing hard, your butt should really be burning by 15 seconds. After 30 seconds, re-engage your glutes, squeeze harder. You should really be hating the fact you found this article by 45 seconds. When you reach a minute (if you can), you can relax.

The psoas major and gluteus maximus work together as an agonist/antagonist pair of muscle to balance the pelvis relative to the lower (lumbar) spine. When the psoas is tight and shortened, the gluteus maximus is often weak and lengthened. By strengthening and using the glutes, we can send an inhibitory signal to the psoas to begin to re-establish balance.

The psoas major and gluteus maximus work together as an agonist/antagonist pair of muscle to balance the pelvis relative to the lower (lumbar) spine. When the psoas is tight and shortened, the gluteus maximus is often weak and lengthened. By strengthening and using the glutes, we can send an inhibitory signal to the psoas to begin to re-establish balance.

Get up now and walk. If you really did a good job squeezing your glutes, your psoas should have gotten a strong inhibitory signal from your brain, and you should have a wonderful, open feeling through the front of your hips as you walk. This is the reciprocal inhibition psoas release.

This open feeling will go away unless you then follow up this posas release with some kind of gentle, coordination movements to take advantage of your newly discovered, lengthened psoas and learn how to control it so it does not get tight again. Whatever you do, do not try and "strengthen" the psoas once you've released it. You're poor psoas has been tight and contracted for who knows how long, it finally gets a change to relax and rest so they last thing it needs immediately after being released is vigorous exercise.

At SOMA Movement Studio, we use Hanna Somatic Movement to gain control of the lengthened/relaxed psoas (more on that in future posts) followed by equipment/spring-assisted Pilates to condition and use the psoas without it going back into its shortened, tight state (notice I did not say strengthen). Otherwise, use the reciprocal inhibition psoas release whenever you want that open feeling in the front of your hips.

The first time I tried the reciprocal inhibition psoas release, I made it to 40 seconds of glute contraction and had delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) the next day. After a week or two, I was easily able to go a minute or two of glute contraction. I do this exercise while brushing my teeth with my electric toothbrush, which pauses every 15 seconds, which I use as a cue to contract my glutes harder. This is a wonderful and gentle way to release/relax the psoas and other hip flexors without having to undergo uncomfortable and invasive massage/bodywork.

Hump Day Class: Matwork + Barrel Classes on Wednesdays

The Arc Barrel which of all the barrel Joe Pialtes designed for use in his exercise system, has the gentlest curve.

The Arc Barrel which of all the barrel Joe Pialtes designed for use in his exercise system, has the gentlest curve.

We've added another class to our weekly schedule. Wednesday mornings from 10:00 - 11 am and Wednesday evenings from 5:00 - 6:00 pm we are hosting a beginning Matwork Pilates class which is enhanced with Barrel! We have both Arc Barrels shown in the pictures below as well as their bigger sibling, the Spine Corrector (sometimes referred to as the Hump Barrel) with its steeper curve available for use during the class.

Barrels are wonderful tools in Matwork Pilates as they add variety as well as more options for exercise modification. They can make exercises easier or more challenging depending on how they are used. They can support you when you need a little extra help or challenge your balance to get your stabilizer muscles to kick in just that much more. Wanna experience what I am talking about? Come by on a Wednesday evening from 5:00 - 6:00 pm, right before Jackie's Gentle Yoga Class at 6:15 pm.

Here is the class description:

This beginner level, 50 minute workout incorporates both mat exercises and exercises on the barrel. Most of the exercises are done with the Arc barrel, the gentlest of the barrels that Joe Pilates designed for his method of exercise, though some exercises may be done on the Spine Corrector which has a steeper curve. Exercises on the barrel will help to open up the chest, shoulders, and work the abdominals and hips in a way that only the barrel can. The barrel will support and assist your body as well as to open and stretch your spine long. Leave class feeling more balanced, open, and flexible!

Meet the SOMA Movement Studio Staff at the Kevin Adorno Memorial Ride & Festival

Come and meet some of the SOMA Studio staff at the 2nd Annual Kevin Adorno Memorial Ride and Festival at Winding Trails in Farmington, CT on Saturday, May 14th. We will have a table at the event with tons of information about our studio and Pilates. We will have with us a Pilates Reformer, Stability/Wunda Chair, and Ladder Barrel for you to demo right on site. Check out our Equipment Highlight posts on this blog or the Equipment page on our website for more pictures and a description of what our Pilates equipement is like.

We've donated over $30,000 in Movement Classes and Services for distribution to participants of the event including large packages of classes for the raffle. We would love for you to stop by and meet us at our table at the Festival. It's going to be a fun filled day. Here is some information and links about the Kevin Adorno, the Memorial Ride, and the Festival that follows.


Please join us for the 2nd annual Kevin Adorno Memorial Ride & Festival Saturday May 14, 2016 at Winding Trails in Farmington, CT. Brought to you by the family and friends of Kevin Adorno as well as Bicycle Friendly Farmington, this year’s festival includes three bicycle rides: a Metric Century (100 km/62.5 miles), a 25 Mile, and a 10 Mile ride. Additional activities include a 5k Trail Run, food, and live music -- all for one great ticket price. The Kevin Adorno Memorial Ride & Festival is intended to inspire and promote activity and unity for the community, in memory of Kevin Adorno.

Kids’ Bicycle Rodeo

This year, Bicycle Friendly Farmington (BFF) is presenting a Bicycle Rodeo for kids aged 8-12 from 1-3 pm. A bicycle rodeo is a fun way to learn the skills required to ride a bicycle safely. BFF's team of certified cycling instructors will conduct equipment and helmet checks and then teach proper techniques for riding, stopping, and steering. Once the skills have been taught, kids will have the chance to test them out on series of short and fun courses in a protected area. Prizes and awards will provided, and a craft station will offer kids the chance to decorate their bikes and work on other fun projects. Pre-registration is requested. All participants must have a helmet and a proper-sized bicycle. Sign-in begins at 12 noon.

About Kevin Adorno

Kevin Adorno was born and raised in Farmington where he and his family enjoyed all of the wonderful things Farmington have to offer. Kevin attended Noah Wallace School, Irving Robbins Middle School, and Farmington High School. He actively participated in soccer, football and lacrosse, and graduated from FHS in 2004. He took classes at Tunxis Community College and then graduated from Central Connecticut State University with a degree in Graphic Design. Kevin was the owner of Bevy Productions & Media and My Pencil Portraits, where he demonstrated his incredible artistic abilities. Kevin always had a sense of adventure and had a particular gift for meeting people and finding out what made them unique. He enjoyed learning about the things they did and then tried them himself. He loved to travel and see new places and by the age of 28 had backpacked Europe, toured the country by car, and biked the entire east coast.

On September 1st, 2014, Kevin was at the tail end of a bicycling tour from Maryland to Florida, completing a two-part east coast adventure he started in the summer of 2013, with a successful ride from Maine to Maryland. Tragically, his journey was interrupted in Vero Beach by an unexpected attack by a homeless man that ended his life. He was just 140 miles from his destination in Miami.

This Ride & Festival honors the life and legacy of a wonderful, adventurous, giving, athletic, fun loving person, Kevin Adorno.

Proceeds from This Event

Proceeds from the event benefit The Kevin Adorno Memorial Foundation, Bicycle Friendly Farmington, Inc., and Winding Trails. The mission of The Kevin Adorno Memorial Foundation is twofold: to support children and young adults in Farmington who are aspiring or pursing an education in the arts, and to promote bicycling, wellness, and bicycle safety in the Farmington Valley, working to ensure that all children have access to bicycles. Bicycle Friendly Farmington is the community advocacy group working to support bicycling in Farmington and Unionville. Winding Trails is an independent, nonprofit organization providing outdoor year-round recreational and educational activities, and is where the Adorno Family spent many happy weekends when Kevin and his siblings were younger.

A FUN & ADVENTURE FILLED DAY:

7:00AM: EVENT DAY Registration & Check in
8:00AM: Metric Century Bike Ride
9:00AM: 5K Trail Run
10:00AM: 25 Mile Bike Ride
11:00AM: 10 Mile Bike Ride
12:00PM: FESTIVAL & FUN ZONE (Raffle)
1:00PM-3:00PM: KIDS BICYCLE RODEO (Bicycle Friendly Farmington)
1:00PM-3:00PM: Brian Jackman(Acoustic Set)
2:00PM: PICK-UP SOCCER GAME
3:00PM-4:30PM: Tim Warren and The Alternate Routes
4:00PM: Raffle Closes and Winners drawn/posted
4:30PM-7:30PM: The Johnny Larsen Band

Small Business Update: Word is Getting Out!! Introducing the SOMA Referral Program

Our website traffic has doubled in the last couple weeks.... which is awesome. People are finding out about our team of instructors, our studio, and our classes. I have people walking into the studio daily now, asking more more information and interested in looking around. I thought now might be the time to introduce our referral program where you can bring your friends and colleagues into the studio, and as a reward, you get a free Equipment class of your choice credited to your account when you friend makes their first purchase.

Another option if you have a couple of friends that you would like to introduce to the studio is a specially scheduled class, just for your group. If you have at least two friends that you would like to bring with you to the studio, just call us to let us know, and we will schedule a class at time that convenient for your group of three or more. 

Right now, you're friend has to list your name as a referral source on our registration sheet or tell us and then we will credit your online account for the class. As soon as I figure out how to automate and add that online capability on to the website, I will.

New Evening and Saturday Jumpboard Reformer Classes

We've received several requests for more evening classes and we listened! We have a brand new class, Jumpboard Reformer Group Class, starting on Mondays from 7-8 pm, Tuesdays 5-6 pm, and Saturdays 10:15-11:15 am and continuing every week afterwards. More schedule updates coming in June.....in the meantime, here is the description of the Jumpboard Reformer class.

The Jumpboard is a fun way to incorporate some cardio and plyometrics into your Pilates routine. The Jumpboard is an attachment that converts a Reformer into a horizontal jumping machine. It attaches to the front of the Reformer where the footbar is. While lying with your back on the carriage you can adjust the spring tension and jump on the board as if it were the floor. The spring tension takes gravity out of the equation, so it feels like you’re jumping on the moon. Jumping on a Refomer is fun, weightless, and graceful. What's not to love?

Jumping takes an incredible amount of core strength and is also a great way to get your body accustomed to plyometrics without having to jump on hard surfaces. The American Council on Exercise advises that forces sustained from jumping onto hard surfaces might equal up to seven times your body weight. In contrast, the jumping on the Jumpboard is done from a horizontal position, which allows you to perform the movements with minimal joint stress.

SOMA Gift Certificates at the Connecticut Breast Health Initiative Race in the Park, May 7th

Breast cancer is incredibly common, and fortunately, one of the more treatable forms of cancer. Nevertheless, the impact breast cancer has on American society is staggering. The American Cancer Society's estimates for breast cancer in the United States for 2016 are:

  • About 246,660 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women.
  • About 61,000 new cases of carcinoma in situ (CIS) will be diagnosed (CIS is non-invasive and is the earliest form of breast cancer).
  • About 40,450 women will die from breast cancer.

Despite major advances in the treatment of breast cancer, breast cancer is still the second leading cause of cancer death in women (only lung cancer kills more women each year.) The chance that a woman will die from breast cancer is about 1 in 36 (about 3%). Mortality rates from breast cancer have been dropping since about 1989, with larger decreases in women younger than 50. These decreases are believed to be the result of finding breast cancer earlier through screening and increased awareness, as well as better treatments.

For some, the road to recovery after treatment for breast cancer can be a long one and SOMA Movement Studio partnered with Farmington Valley Physical Therapy can be there to help. Bogusia Badon, a physical therapist on staff at both the SOMA Movement Studio and Farmington Valley Physical Therapy has over thirty years of experience rehabilitating clients after breast cancer surgery, reconstruction, and radiation treatment. In addition to being a physical therapist, she is also trained in Pilates and a certified Pink Ribbon Program Instructor, a Pilates-based exercise program specially designed to meet the needs and challenges facing breast cancer survivors.

To show our support for the breast cancer survivor community, SOMA Movement Studio has donated over $3800 in gift certificates to the Connecticut Breast Health Initiative for distribution at the annual Connecicut RACE IN THE PARK to be held in Walnut Park, New Britain on May 7th. Proceeds from this event go to CT Breast Health Initiative and are used make a difference locally in the fight against breast cancer through support, education and research. To accomplish this mission, CT BHI plans on funding a diversified portfolio of clinical/translational research with emphasis on programs that have not yet qualified for federal grants targeting breast cancer cause and survival.

The Connecticut RACE IN THE PARK takes place annually each May on the Saturday before Mother’s Day in New Britain’s historic Walnut Hill Park. Each year, thousands gather to participate in race day festivities and events while honoring survivors, remembering loved ones, celebrating life and most importantly, raising much needed funds to advance the fight against breast cancer in Connecticut. Click here for more information including registration instructions for the event.

Pink Ribbon Program Training for Rehabilitation and Pilates Professionals at SOMA Movement Studio

The SOMA Movement Studio at Farmington Valley Physical Therapy is now an official instructor training center for the Pink Ribbon Program, a system of Pilates based exercises specifically designed for post-operative breast cancer recovery. The exercises help lengthen and strengthen the shoulder, chest, back and abdominal muscles, allowing women to regain full range of motion to those areas affected by breast cancer surgery.

The Pink Ribbon Program, founded by Doreen Puglisi, MS, was created to help meet the goals of the breast cancer survivor. These major areas of concern typically include body image, frozen shoulder, and/or range of motion, depression and anxiety.

This post-rehabilitation protocol is appropriate for any breast cancer survivor, whether their surgery was eight weeks ago or ten years ago. Over 1000 breast cancer survivors have used this exercise protocol to aid in surgery recovery.

Summary of the Six Week Exercise Program

  • Begins six weeks post-operatively, encompassing post op weeks 6-12
  • There are three phases of the Pink Ribbon Program, each phase lasts two weeks
  • Progression from one phase to the next is individually based
  • Classes/sessions are attended two to three times a week for most reliable results
  • The client generally can resume mainstream activities after completion of the six week Pink Ribbon Program

Benefits of the Pink Ribbon Program

  • Prevent and reduce cancer related fatigue
  • Increase muscle mass, strength and endurance
  • Increase in daily functional activities
  • Increase in physical activities
  • Assist in lymphedema management
  • Increase shoulder range of motion following breast cancer surgery, especially with lymph node dissection

The Pink Ribbon Program training is open to physical therapists, occupational therapists, Pilates instructors, lymphedema treatment specialists, and nurses. After completion of the Pink Ribbon Training Program, the practicioner can refer to themselves as a Post Operative Breast Cancer Exercise Specialist (BCES).

Post Operative Breast Cancer Exercise Specialist
The Breast Cancer Exercise Specialist (BCES) is a professional qualified to assess, design, and implement individual fitness programs for those diagnosed with cancer. The BCES has an advanced understanding of the cancer treatment progressions from diagnosis to treatment, recovery, prevention of lymphedema, and contraindications.

Please sign up for our newsletter to be alerted of when the next Pink Ribbon Program Training for Professionals is scheduled at SOMA Movement Center and Farmington Valley Physical Therapy.

Equipment Highlight: Pilates Reformer

There is probably no piece of Pilates equipment more famous than the Pilates reformer. The Reformer evolved after the Cadillac, utilizing spring resistance like in the Cadillac, but also incorporating a moving base to increase the range and variety of exercises available.

Invented by Pilates founder Joseph Pilates, the reformer is a bed-like frame with a flat, padded platform on it, called the carriage, which rolls back and forth on wheels within the frame. The carriage is attached to one end of the reformer by a set of springs that provide resistance for exercises. The carriage is moved against the resistance of the springs either by pushing on a footbar at the end of the carriage, or pulling on ropes emanating from the head of the reformer. Exercises can be done lying down, sitting, standing, pulling the straps, pushing the footbar, perched on the footbar, perched on the shoulder blocks, with additional equipment, upside down, sideways and all kinds of variations thereof.

SOMA Movement studio has contemporary reformers, meaning that these reformers have been updated from Pilates' original designs to accommodate modern style exercises and accessories. Click on the interactive, 3-D picture on the left for a closer look at one of our Reformers with Vertical frame. For example, many contemporary reformers are longer than Pilates' original design in part due to the invention of the Jumpboard, an attachment that goes onto the foot of the reformer that allows the user to perform plyometric exercises, with much less impact on the user's body. Click and drag on the interactive 3-D photograph to the left of this text to get a closer look at one of our Reformers with Vertical Frame.

SOMA Movement Studio's reformers are all equiped with vertical frames, the large frame at the head of the reformer that springs, ropes, and bars can be suspended from. The vertical frames serve to vary the type and difficulty of exercises. Reformers are large pieces of equipment; the reformers at Soma Movement Studio are about 8 feet long, over 2 feet wide, and the vertical frames stand about 7 feet tall.

Small Business Update: Gift certificates & Brochures are in!

Our hi-tech marketing materials are now available and I think they came out beautifully. We have trifold, glossy paper, brochures that are individually numbered and barcoded to act as gift certificates which can be redeemed online in our class scheduler for classes.

There are four separate bits of digital information embedded in our gift certificates. The first is a QR code in the lower right corner of the map which directs your smartphone/tablet to open our address in Google Maps in case your are trying set up GPS navigation to our Studio. To use this QR code, you scan it with a QR scanner app. I have the app, Quick Scan, on my phone and it works well.

Next we have a numerical code which is the gift certificate code that is redeemable online in our Class Scheduler. Just login, sign up for the class that the gift certificate specifies, and use this code to pay for your class during Checkout. If you prefer, to redeem your gift certificate in person at the Studio, then we will use the UPC barcode that is next to the gift certificate code to redeem the card.

Finally, in the contact information at the bottom of the brochure/gift certificate, there is another QR code that directs your phone to open our website.

We'll be distributing these brochures/gift certificates at various events and functions in the Farmington Valley that are happening in the next couple months. I'll keep you updated with events where you'll see us.

Two Week Anniversary!

It's been two weeks since we've opened and operations are getting smoother now! Word is getting out and the phone has been ringing. Every client we've met has been so enthusiastic about exercise and learning smart movement. The first newsletter should come out soon and we just received our business cards so we are all official now!

We are still in the "nesting" phase of setting up  the studio. The equipment is all up and running, walls are painted, and furniture is in place. We are still organizing and reorganizing, making our studio as beautiful, serene, and functional as possible. It's so much fun to open a business; like a home away from home. 

This is our first blog post. I envision this blog as being a little bit about each of Pilates, Smart Movement, starting a small business, community, and maybe a couple DIY projects along the way.