I am a Pilates and yoga teacher with an extensive background in movement and dance.
I graduated from The Laban Centre for Movement & Dance, London, in 1997 and went on to perform nationally and internationally as an independent dance/theatre artist for more than 12 years. I performed with many leading companies, including The National Youth Dance Company, The Cholmonodeleys & The Featherstonehaughs and Protein Dance.
I completed Pilates matwork teacher training courses with both the Pilates Foundation (2004) and Body Control Pilates (2012) and I qualified as an accredited British Wheel of Yoga and Yoga Alliance teacher with YogaCampus in 2010. In 2012 I qualified as a Total Yoga Nidra (Yoga Sleep) teacher with Uma Dinsmore-Tuli and Nirlipta Tuli. In 2016 I graduated from SOAS University of London with an MA in Yoga and Meditation Traditions.
I sat on the Board of Directors of the Pilates Foundation (2010-12). The Pilates Foundation is the UK’s first Pilates Teachers’ Association and was set up in 1996 with an aim to establish and maintain quality and excellence in Pilates practice and teaching.
I have been lucky enough to teach Pilates and Yoga, both in this country and overseas, for numerous gyms, studios, dance companies and within the super-yacht industry.
I enjoy teaching at all levels of ability and have worked with many different groups of clients, including the elderly, those in physical rehabilitation, professional dancers, models and Oscar winning actors.
Most of all I love teaching in my local community in South East London.
Barbara Christians teaches the 09:00-10:00 Pilates class on Saturday mornings at The Hope Centre, 118 Malham Road, Forest Hill.
Barbara Christians qualified as Mat Pilates Instructor in 2015 and holds a Level 3 Diploma in Teaching Pilates (QFC) from the YMCA. Her classes are grounded in the classical Pilates repertoire, bringing in influences from various contemporary Pilates teachings and Fascial Fitness.
Barbara always had a keen interest in movement disciplines: Training in Karate and Judo as a child in Japan, discovering and falling in love with the Brazilian martial art Capoeira in London, and generally trying out as many and diverse dance and exercise classes possible over her past 20 years in London – from traditional African Dance to Contact Improvisation, from Barre to Boxing to Yoga, to name but a few examples. Throughout this, Barbara always kept coming back to Pilates.
Barbara experienced first hand the benefits of Pilates not only to strengthen the body and find ease and grace in movement, but the mental health benefits of fully focussing on the exercise at hand and learning to listen to your body, bringing about a calm yet energised feeling of being at one with yourself. This experience of the body-mind connection led her to leave her desk based job and retrain as a Dance Movement Therapist, and later qualify as Pilates Instructor.
Barbara decided not to pursue a career as a Dance Movement Therapist, but instead is focussed on building her Pilates career, hoping to facilitate a fun way for others to experience the benefits of this body-mind discipline. She enjoys working with people of all abilities and ages.
Qualifications and CPD:
October 2017 Fletcher Pilates ® Advanced Intensive Licensing Course (Fletcher Pilates)
July 2017 Fletcher Pilates ® Intensive Licensing Course (Fletcher Pilates)
April + May 2017 Fascial Fitness Foundation+ Trainer Course (Fascial Fitness Association GmbH, Germany)
March 2017 Level 3 Advanced Stretching & Mobility Releases (Drummond Education)
March 2017 Anatomy in Three Dimensions (Balanced Body)
February 2017 Rolling for Length, Rolling for Strength (Balanced Body)
2015 Level 3 Diploma in Teaching Pilates (QFC) (YMCA)
2014 MA in Dance Movement Psychotherapy (University of Roehampton)