Do you ever feel like you are stuck doing the same fitness routines for years but maybe afraid to step outside of the comfort zone of what you do best and love? You might gain inspiration from our friend, Lisa Marie Kocsis, who despite having a wealth of experience in Pilates and Dance as a participant and instructor, loves exploring new and exciting ways to challenge herself. Whether it's climbing to 14,000 feet or grounding herself in nature with Animal Flow, she thrives on the adventure of wellness exploration and sharing it with her clients.
Have you always been active and involved in sports or wellness?
Yes. I began Polynesian dance at nine years old. I started with ballet, then added jazz, tap and Polynesian dancing over the years, and eventually classical modern. My passion led me to a BFA in Dance. I began studying Pilates as a client in January of 2000.
You have such a broad background in certifications, Pilates, Nutrition, Animal Flow...what drives your thirst for knowledge?
I've always been committed to learning throughout my lifetime. After studying Pilates as a client for four years, my love for the technique led me to get my certification in 2004. I became fascinated with the education and theory of movement mechanics and anatomy, and the quest began! I believe there's a wealth of knowledge out there, and while I may only learn a small segment, my philosophy is to expose myself to more information and amass as much knowledge as I can. I have a tremendous passion for my trade, so that combined with my quest to learn is what drives me.
Do you look to your varying modes of training for their specific fitness or physiologic benefits or for a different type of fulfillment or enjoyment?
YES! Personally, I believe cross training is the best approach, especially for the average person looking to stay fit and live an active, healthy lifestyle. I enjoy strength training, endurance training and Pilates, but also love kettlebells and bodyweight training!
How do you weave them into a comprehensive program for yourself or a client?
Depends on what I'm doing/preparing for. I've done 5Ks, obstacle races, strength endurance competitions and am an avid hiker! My programming is designed to prepare me for whichever of these is upcoming. Despite the fact that I can and do work out on my own, I now work with a coach, as I think it's important for people to do so. In regards to my clients, program design is based upon the clients goals and current physical condition.
Is there a type of wellness activity that you haven't tried yet that you have in mind?
I've done yoga only minimally, so would like to explore that modality more. I also would be interested in trying cross-country skiing.
What is one of the most memorable moments you have had in your career (either your own physical achievements or training others?)
Career was receiving my SFG kettlebell certification.
Personal physical achievement is recently summiting my first hike to 14,000 feet!
What advice would you give to someone who is considering trying a new form of exercise?
· Firstly, familiarize yourself with basic logistics needed for that sport e.g. familiarize yourself with the benefits and risks
· Get proper gear, if necessary
· Know the important things re: that sport's contraindications, safety measures
· Research and seek advice or guidance from an expert
Is it hard if someone who is very experienced in one sport or activity to switch to another?
Yes and no. One should take into consideration if the sport you're interested in trying could potentially put you at risk which could have a negative impact on your profession, then probably best to not take up that new sport. Another reason is if the training regimen will go against the principles of your current sport. On the other hand, if interested in broadening your horizons and trying a new sport or exploring a new modality out of curiosity, or to challenge yourself, approach it safely and with an open mind.
Lisa Marie, Animal Flow Enthusi