Thank You Tracy Anderson!
Those of you who know me, and who have read the unflattering things I have written about Tracy Anderson, must be seriously wondering whether I have lost my sh*t. Why in the world would I be thanking Tracy Anderson?
Surely not for her focus on training women to be “teeny-tiny”.
Or for her positioning herself as a seasoned and trained fitness veteran, when in actuality she is a dancer without even a fitness certification.
Not even for her unsound training practices and her use of baby food as a diet measure!
No, I thank Tracy Anderson for being a constant reminder to me of what NOT to do to my clients.
Back in December 2012, I read an new article about Tracy Anderson in my Sunday Times’ Metropolitan Section. You may know Tracy as Gwyneth Paltrow and Kim Kardashian’s current trainer, and Madonna’s former trainer. She is known for her focus on making women “teeny tiny” through two hours a day of high impact dance aerobics and low-weight high-rep “muscular structure” exercises.
There is one paragraph of this article that says it all,
“Ms. Anderson has not sought certification in fields like exercise physiology or teaching, she said, because, ‘I am so hard on myself with not deviating the amount of time that I have for research and development of the method.'”
Really? You don’t have time to do a little study and get a basic fitness certification? ISN’T THAT LIKE NOT GOING TO MEDICAL SCHOOL AND GETTING A PHYSICIAN’S LICENSE BECAUSE YOU ARE TOO BUSY PRACTICING MEDICINE? Have I mentioned that most of her claims about what her method does are dubious?
I teach in a Pilates studio that is near Tracy’s NYC studio, and so have the chance to work with people who have tried her method, and found themselves in pain from the repetitive motions. And never lifting anything heavier than three pounds? That only works if you can afford to pay other people to carry your stuff, and even then it will leave you with brittle bones. I carry grocery bags heavier than that!
Osteoporosis and osteopenia are not fun. Only weight bearing resistance exercises build bone. This woman has the characteristic dowager’s hump that is a sign of spinal fractures from osteoporosis.
My clients do not walk away with weak joints and brittle bones. In fact, they are strong, flexible, reasonably pain-free, have great posture, and are able to take on strenuous physical challenges when necessary. Why should they expect anything less?