Educator Highlight: Deborah Marcus

We interviewed Polestar Educator Deborah Marcus! From Dancer to Pilates Instructor, Educator and Studio owner, read on to meet one of the best!

Polestar: What do you love about teaching / Pilates / Owning a Studio?  Where did you take your Training and who was the educator?
DM: I love being an agent for another person’s discovery of their own self efficacy.  Pilates is the perfect tool for this.  
I meandered into the Pilates world in the 1980’s New York City via teachers like Andre Bernard and Jean Claude West while pursuing a career as a dancer and choreographer.  I moved back to my hometown, San Mateo, CA after my first daughter was born and opened a studio, now called Movement Refinery Pilates.  I found my way to the Polestar Teacher Training in 2008 where I studied with Sherri Betz in Santa Cruz, CA.  It was an eye opening and transformative experience for which I am forever grateful!   
Polestar: What are your current inspirations?   What do you love about them?
DM: Many things inspire me every day: my clients who never give up, all quadrupeds, birds that fly solo and birds that fly in groups, human acts of bravery and kindness.
Polestar: Why Pilates?  How did you find the practice?
DM: The continuum between assisted to resisted movement, closed chain to open chain, breath as a tool….these and other pathways inherent in the Pilates studio repertoire allow an individual to find her/his way from pain and dis-function to movement ease and function at any level of fitness.  Personally, Pilates has eased my way through this journey before and after multiple surgeries.  But what originally attracted me to Pilates was the specificity of the movement forms.  I have to go back to my experience as a dancer trained in the style of Anton Decroux.  It was incredible movement training that gave me an appreciation of how form and function are intimately intertwined in the health and well being of every human. 
Polestar: What do you hope to convey in your teaching?
DM: The most powerful thing you can do for your own progress is to be in the moment.  Easier said than done!
Polestar: Where would you love to vacation to?
DM: Antarctica and Japan.  I have a second  cousin who moved to a village deep in the Alaskan wilderness.  I’d love to visit her.
Polestar: What is your favorite Quote?
DM: I don’t have one.
Polestar: Describe your movement style?
DM: Depends on the day and the place.  Somewhere between sensuous and sharp, like the precision in a Bob Fosse jazz number .  I recently had a Watsu treatment and I loved giving up to that movement state.
Polestar: What is your favorite apparatus or favorite way to move? What do you love about it?
DM: I enjoy the Chair.  It takes up so little space and gives you the biggest bang for your buck with regards to gravity.
Polestar: What are you reading or learning about?
DM: I just finished Haruki Murakami’s surreal 1Q84.  Another great read from him is What I Talk About When I Talk About Running: A Memoir.  Right now I’m half way through Aroused: The History of Hormones and How They Control Just About Everything, by Randi Hutter Epstein.  
Polestar: How does Pilates inform your profession?
DM: Pilates as a profession is evolving on every level.  The opportunity to learn more is always there thanks to organizations like the PMA, Polestar Continuing Education, and Balanced Body to name a few.  I also am grateful for the privilege of being a Polestar Comprehensive Educator where I get to share my expertise gathered during many years of practice and learning from talented teachers.  And, of course, teaching is learning.  It never stops!

Deborah Marcus is Currently a Polestar Educator and the owner of Movement Refinery Pilates Studio in San Mateo, CA.  Check out her post “Helping and Healing Through Pilates

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