Maeve Feinblatt is the Styling and Buying Operations Associate at Tracy Anderson Method. Here, she shares how Tracy’s in-studio workouts helped her appreciate the woman in the mirror.
Though I’m a dancer at heart, I often felt my time in the dance studio was overshadowed by self-criticism and self-doubt. The many hours per week that I spent in front of a full-length mirror, dissecting every part of myself, was daunting—especially when comparing myself to those around me. In short, the experience weighed me down.
When I was introduced to the Tracy Anderson Method about three months ago, I was worried I wouldn’t be fit enough to do the workouts. I didn’t want to appear inadequate compared to seasoned members. I also didn’t think I’d be able to withstand the heat. (Every classroom is kept at 95°F and 75% humidity). I was fearful of reliving those same feelings of inadequacy I previously experienced.
My Tracy Anderson Method Journey: The Beginning
After some time, I was encouraged by enough people to sign up for an in-person workout. Nervous and excited, I booked my first intermediate muscular design class. It was a physical challenge unlike any workout or dance class I had tried in the past.
Extending into an arabesque and completing modified fire hydrants with pulses, I feel my body reacting to the intensity of the workout. I see the shapes I’m making in the mirror, and I am captivated and impressed. I watch the trainer’s form carefully, and try to emulate it as best I can. As I’m studying the moves during the class, I tend to lose myself in the rhythm of movement, music, and muscular empowerment. Not only do the moves in the program create a rewarding workout, but the elegance of the moves makes you feel like a professional when you see yourself doing it. During cardio portions, the upbeat energy radiates throughout the room, as the footwork is embellished with fun hand choreography and flare. One can’t help but sing along to the music playing while they work out, and in doing this it’s often easy to not even realize how much of the workout has been completed.
That day, I left the Tracy Anderson Method studio feeling accomplished and eager to keep improving. I began with two or three classes per week, but it wasn’t long before I started taking more. I was addicted to feeling stronger, both inside and out, with every class.
The sensation of finishing a grueling workout at 7:30 a.m. is now my favorite way to start the day. Not only does Tracy’s Method benefit my physical strength, but it also helps build emotional resilience and perseverance. Making Tracy’s Method a part of my day has helped me achieve self-acceptance and has encouraged a goal-setting mindset that has also trickled over to my personal and professional life.
The Woman in the Mirror
My relationship with studio mirrors also improved. Instead of picking myself apart, I now give myself a reassuring smile when I know I look fierce doing a dynamic mat sequence.
That mirror, an enemy for so many dancers like me who used the reflection as a catalyst for negative energy, seems to have its reputation overridden in Tracy’s studio. Whether it’s the music blasting from the speaker or the encouraging smiles from the trainer, I am at peace. I now look at myself with love and gratitude when I work out. I see the people around me doing their best, and have a newfound appreciation for the way my body permits me to move.
The “I can’ts” that I often critiqued in my reflection at the dance studio is replaced by the “I can’s” during class. I study my own movements in addition to the trainer’s, and I am overcome with pride for being able to keep up. No matter how well I’m performing in class, I seldom find myself discouraged by the things I find challenging. I am too excited about what I can do.
Mind, Body & Soul
The Tracy Anderson Method taught me that my body was made to support me and grow with me, not work against me. Learning to embrace my own movements and setting attainable goals has breathed life back into the part of me that put so much emphasis on the physical. I now wake up in the morning waiting for my Tracy Anderson fix, so I can let out my energy and watch myself succeed at a task I set for myself that day.
Though I cherish my time as a dancer, I feel a strong bond to my new identity as a TAmily member. I take pride in the workouts I complete, regardless of whether or not I’m the best in the room. This gift of empowerment is one that I will not take for granted, and I am thrilled to be able carry what I have learned within the TA Studios throughout all facets of my life.