Forget the Crunches & get Planking!

If you want rock solid abdominals then you should be all about the Plank.

As far as exercises go, you get the best bang for your ab-rocking buck with planks because it is considered an exercise that engages multiple muscles.

 Photo Credit:  Ayo Ogunseinde  on  Unsplash

Photo Credit: Ayo Ogunseinde on Unsplash

7 reasons to get excited about doing planks

  1. For being a basic isometric exercise, planks strengthen your entire body—they make your core pop, strengthen your lower back, and build your shoulders.
  2. The longer you can hold the plank, the more resilient your lower back will be to injury.
  3. Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture.
  4. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column.
  5. You’ll improve your overall balance.
  6. Planks require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.
  7. Best perk of don’t need any equipment.

Ask your P/oP instructor for their recommendations and tips for conquering the plank.

You’ll be better for it, guaranteed.



Foot Health: Don't Tiptoe Around its Importance

We all know how to keep our biceps in shape, but few of us know how to keep feet and toes in good condition.

They take significant abuse from the hours we spend on our feet each day.  

The American Podiatric Medical Association (APMA) considers your feet a marvel of engineering.  Together, your two feet contain more than 50 bones, accounting for about one-fourth of all the bones in your body. And somehow they also make room for more than 60 joints and 200 muscles, tendons, and ligaments that hold them together and help them move.

The American Orthopaedic Foot & Ankle Society recommends doing these simple exercises to strengthen toes and prevent foot discomfort.

All shoe wearers will benefit from these exercises.


Toe raise, point and curl:

Hold each position for five seconds and repeat 10 times. Great if you suffer from toe cramps.

golf ball.jpg

Golf ball roll:

Roll a golf ball under the ball of the foot for two minutes. 
This is a great massage for the bottom of the foot and is recommended for people
with plantar fasciitis (heel pain), arch strain or foot cramps.

towel curl.jpg

Towel curls

Place a small towel on the floor and curl it toward you using only your toes. 
You can increase the resistance by putting a weight on the end of the towel. 
Relax and repeat this exercise five times. 

Try these exercises recommendations the next time your feet cry mutiny.

You’ll soon be stepping lively again!

For more information on foot health go to:


Jake’s Favorite Mexican Roadside Inspired Summer Snack

Occasionally my sons and I stop after school and pick up the fruit snack the Mexican vendors sell on the side of the road. 

My mother used to make this for us growing up and now I make our version at home for my kids. It's Jake's favorite. 

Ingredients vary as this weekend, I used what was at hand in our refrigerator:

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  In a large bowl add,  Celery stalks cut to 1 1/2 bite sizes and Carrots sliced on a diagonal  Avocados cut into bite sized chunks and Cucumbers sliced  Add lots of fresh squeezed lime   Our home version we add Olive oil,   Sea salt plus   Mexican red pepper seasoning, we use "Tajin" 

In a large bowl add,

Celery stalks cut to 1 1/2 bite sizes and Carrots sliced on a diagonal

Avocados cut into bite sized chunks and Cucumbers sliced

Add lots of fresh squeezed lime

Our home version we add Olive oil, Sea salt plus Mexican red pepper seasoning, we use "Tajin" 

The Traditional Roadside dish would also include a blend of the following ingredients:

  • Watermelon
  • Melon
  • Mango
  • Jicama

It's healthy and refreshing on a hot summer day! Enjoy.


Tuesday Tip

Gone Fishing 

If you suffer from dry eyes, up your seafood intake.

Salmon, sardines, and mackerel contain omega-3 fatty acids, which the body uses to produce tears, among other things. 

Research suggests that people who consume higher amounts of these fats are less likely to have dry eyes.



Celebrating July 4th often means making patriotic themed dishes.

What's better than to make a red, white and blue treat with berries...

cecilia-par-102886-unsplash (1).jpg

July 4th Berry Treats

Instead of loading up on fake food coloring, go natural and create a buffet of berry-infused beverages for Fourth of July! Berry Cubes Ice can be exciting. That said, you can dress up your drinks with berries. Drop a few blueberries and raspberries into your ice cube tray. Fill with water, and freeze. Put the frozen berry cubes into a water pitcher or add them to sparkling water.

Happy Independence Day from all of us at P/oP.

Photo Credit: cecilia-par-102886-unsplash

The Sun Protection Factor

The Sun Protection Factor [SPF] number tells you how long the sun’s UV radiation would take to redden your skin when using the product exactly as directed versus the amount of time without any sunscreen.   

Whether the sky above is a bright blue or steely gray, the sun’s rays are raining down billions of photon particles per second on us. Those kaleidoscopic rays contain ultraviolet (UV) radiation, the source of sunburn, premature skin aging and skin cancer.

SPF is a number that indicates how well a sunscreen shields unprotected skin from damage caused by a particular type of UV radiation: the UVB rays.

  • SPF 15 blocks 93% of UVB rays
  • SPF 30 blocks 97% of UVB rays
  • SPF 50 blocks 98% of UVB rays
  • SPF 100 blocks 99% of UVB rays

Studies show that products with very high SPFs often create a false sense of security.

People who use them tend to stay out in the sun much longer. They may skip reapplying. And they may think they don’t need to seek shade, wear a hat or cover up with clothing no matter the activity. They end up getting a lot more UV damage, which, of course, defeats the purpose.

Almost everyone uses too little and almost no one puts it on correctly. 

We recommend the application tips below from on how to use sunscreen the right way.

Share these tips with your family and friends:

  1. Far more important than the sunscreen you choose is the way you apply it. An SPF 50 sunscreen applied haphazardly provides much less protection than an SPF 30 (or SPF 15) sunscreen applied conscientiously.
  2. Apply 15 minutes before sun exposure. This is true of all sunscreens.
  3. Use massively more sunscreen than you think you should. A rule of thumb for a person wearing shorts and a T-shirt is to use at least an ounce (visualize a full shotglass), and make sure you cover every square inch of exposed skin. The Skin Cancer Foundation recommendations to use a water-resistant, broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher for any extended outdoor activity.
  4. Reapply at least every two hours. True for all sunscreens, this is another guideline that many people are lax in following.

Happy Summer from all of us at P/oP

 Photo credit: sai-kiran-anagani-209542-unsplash.jpg

Photo credit: sai-kiran-anagani-209542-unsplash.jpg

Garbanzo Bean Health Benefits

With origins in the Middle East, garbanzo beans have become a global food – the most popular of all legumes, according to the University of Arizona.

Whether you toss them into salads, process them into hummus, or roast them as snacks, garbanzo beans (chickpeas) make a smart addition to your diet no matter what your age, They are great for kids lunches too!

For vegetarians and those trying to eat less meat, garbanzo beans supply lean protein, including the essential amino acids needed for muscle building and maintenance.

These hearty beans provide a wealth of nutrients that support good health.

Try P/oP’s favorite recipe below for

Garbanzo Bean ‘Tuna Salad’ style


Photo by Deryn Macey on Unsplash

Vegan Garbanzo Bean Salad, Tuna Salad style

What you’ll need:

Garbanzo beans, 1 -24oz can or 2 -14oz cans, rinsed and drained

2 Celery stalks, diced

3 Persian Cucumbers, diced

2 Green Onions, chopped

2 Cups Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half

1tsp Dill weed, dried or fresh, add more to taste as needed

4  Tbsp Vegan Mayo or regular mayo

3 Tbsp Mustard, regular, Dijon or Brown (your choice or mix & match)

2 tsp Rice Vinegar

In a large bowl add the drained garbanzo beans and mash with a fork leaving the mixture slightly chunky to resemble tuna chunks.  Add all the remaining ingredients and stir well to incorporate ingredients.

Add salt & pepper to taste as needed. Serve with Pita bread, sandwich style or scoop over a bed of chopped kale or mixed greens.  We love adding avocado chunks too.


Real Pilates, Real People, Real Stories

Throughout the years we've heard people tell us how the benefits of Pilates have changed their lives - sometimes dramatically. We think you should hear them, too…

Dottie Lanham: Pasadena, CA

I’ve seen a wonderful change in how my body moves since I started Pilates. Over the years my workouts consisted of walking and my yoga practice  but I have never been athletically inclined. But now I’ve seen a major increase in the coordination of my body – Pilates has improved my posture and basically changed my muscle structure.

When people ask me why I do Pilates I tell them that it’s a great way to build toned muscles with little to no impact on your body. You can even get some cardio exercise with no joint impact. In addition, I’ve never had a dull class. There are so many exercise and so much variations – its just always fun.  And, I love how I feel after a class! Thanks Maria!


Has Pilates changed your life?

Are you an instructor with a great client success story? We’d love to hear from you on our comment section or email us at



What appeals to you for a Pilates Class workout...

Depends on a few things, consider how you like to work out, your schedule and your goals.  Whatever class type setting you choose for your experience, our studio promotes a physical and mental mind-body atmosphere conducive to concentration and focus.

Do you need the camaraderie or discipline of scheduled classes to keep you on track?

We recommend you try a group experience if working out with others helps you stay motivated and focused.

If so, a group reformer or group mat classes may be the best fit for you.

 Group Mat Class

Group Mat Class

Just about every benefit the Pilates method has to offer can be achieved through mat work!

 Group Reformer Class

Group Reformer Class

Join Samantha every Monday evening at 6pm & 7pm for a group reformer class. Text (626) 497-1280 to reserve a spot. 

Join Toni every Wednesday evening at 7:00pm for a group reformer class. Text (707) 416-6162 to reserve a spot. Email to rsvp.

Join Amelia every Thursday evenings at 6pm & 7pm for a group reformer class. Text (203) 627-6687 to reserve a spot .

Group Reformer Class: $25

Want an intensive, one-on-one Pilates experience customized to your individual goals or special needs?

Nothing beats our one-on-one private customized Pilates sessions.

Private one-on-one Session

Intro Offer: 3 private, 55-minute introductory sessions: $180

This set of 3 classes is an introduction to the art of Pilates and is open to first-time clients. Build core strength and learn the beginning moves you'll need to master this timeless exercise. Inquire on instructor availability.

P/oP certified instructors  work with clients of all ages and abilities including handicapped, athletes, young adults and seniors, through tailored exercises in both private and group classes.

Call (626)765-6500 or email us for additional information or to schedule an appointment with one of our wonderful instructors today!



Wisdom Wednesday

Congratulations to all

School, College, Professional or University 2018 Graduates!

 Photo by  Logan Isbell  on  Unsplash

Photo by Logan Isbell on Unsplash

“There is a good reason they call these ceremonies ‘commencement exercises’. Graduation is not the end; it’s the beginning.”
- Orrin Hatch

"All successful people, men and women, are big dreamers. They imagine what their future could be, ideal in every respect, and then they work every day toward their distant vision, that goal or purpose." 

- Brian Tracy

Father's Day

We celebrate all our Pilates Men!

Pilates can be a great workout for men at any age.

The practice incorporates all the elements of healthy physical movement: breath, posture, strength, balance, coordination, and flexibility.

Guys need to be able to move, too, so beards and chest hair are just as welcome and encouraged in the studio as are yoga pants.

We notice that men return to our studio after they discover the benefits of Pilates as physical therapy or chiropractic patients. When they see Pilates in real life they have to try it, and once they try it, they are usually hooked on the sense of well being and feeling stronger. And, who doesn't like that feeling?

If you strength train, play golf or tennis, or participate in any aerobic physical activity, the basic Pilates exercise routine will complement any excercise you do by improving spinal mobility, core strength and posture.

Just like Joseph Pilates, you too might just begin feeling

like a better, stronger man.