EXCL: 'I wanted to keep workout interesting for people all the time,' says celebrity Pilates instructor Yasmin Karachiwala

Ahead of the fourth edition of Pilates Festival India, Yasmin shares how Pilates can transform your body from within and busts common myths about the exercise form

author_img   |   Published :   |  06th January 2023 12:00 AM
Celebrity Pilates instructor Yasmin Karachiwala

Celebrity Pilates instructor Yasmin Karachiwala

With three decades of experience in the fitness industry and a clientele that includes celebrities like Alia Bhatt and Katrina Kaif, renowned Pilates instructor Yasmin Karachiwala has become the face of the Pilates revolution in India.

Aiming to bring Pilates enthusiasts together, Yasmin has curated Pilates Festival India, where experts from across the globe come to teach Pilates with her. Ahead of its fourth edition in February, Yasmin shares how Pilates can transform your body from within and busts common myths around the exercise form.

How did you get interested in Pilates?
I started my career with fitness group training and then became a personal trainer. I set up a small studio in my house and was doing really well. But I wanted to learn something new to keep workouts interesting for people all the time. By then, I’d had both my babies. That’s when I researched ways to reduce my belly fat and found something called Pilates. I thought I’d give it a try. That’s how this journey started.

How different is Pilates from Yoga?
It is a completely different science. Parts of Pilates have been adapted from Yoga because Pilates was invented by Joseph Pilates, who was also a Yogi. So, an exercise between Yoga and Pilates might look very similar, but the science behind each of them — in the way you execute the exercise and the body parts you focus on during the exercise — is very different.

What can Pilates help our body achieve?
Pilates strengthens your body inside out; it improves your movement, betters your immunity, helps increase concentration, and most importantly, it makes you feel really good. When you finish a Pilates session, you feel something you have never felt before. In 10 sessions, you will feel the difference and in one month, you will have a whole new body.

What made you start Pilates Festival India?
I wanted to create a space for people from non-Pilates backgrounds as well as Pilates enthusiasts. It was like a community-building activity where you meet people from different walks of life. I wanted to work on fitness while having fun because, in the end, that’s what Pilates is all about.

What can participants expect from the Pilates Festival India this year?
This year, participants can experience all-new international Pilates techniques, like some Pilates exercises that will be conducted on hanging hammocks! Besides the aerial and the trampoline, we also have a magic circle and some other equipment that you can get at the festival. Also, the location is new as we have never done it in Goa before.

Katrina Kaif is considered to have one of the fittest bodies in Bollywood right now. How is it to work with her?
It’s excellent. I’ve been working with her for almost 20 years now. She’s very committed, very dedicated, and very sincere towards her fitness and that’s really helped me decide on the plan of focus.

What is the Pilates myth that annoys you the most?
That Pilates is only for women! People think that it’s only for women and dancers but that’s not true. Joseph Pilates, who invented Pilates, was a man, and Pilates was invented for soldiers during World War I. So, according to history, Pilates was invented by a man for men.

Seems like it’s gonna be an eventful year for you. What do you do to bust stress in such times?
Watch Netflix! I watch Netflix for two hours every night. Right now, I am watching Harry & Meghan. My all-time favourite show is Game Of Thrones, but I liked the original one better than the sequel.

(With inputs from Mithun Narayanan)

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Twitter: @MallikPrattusa