May Del Rosario, My Fitness and Life Coach at Still & Moving Center
May Del Rosario and I first met when my husband joined the weight management program Kulana Hawaii in November of 2013. He has type-2 diabetes, and his doctor had recommended the program as a way to increase his exercise level. May met with him and assessed his willingness, his ability, and his overall attitude about exercise. We started with a once a week, one-hour class, Tai Chair. I was there to support him in his journey. However, I remember struggling with standing and sitting using my legs, not my knees and struggling with various poses for balance even though I had the chair to support me. I know May quickly assessed my ability, my balance, and my attitude, and recognized that she could help me, too.
My husband gained flexibility, strength, and balance. He was able to attend more weekday classes when I was working. He appreciated the safe feeling of exercising with a group of people, at various stages of life and fitness. May was able to prescribe appropriate exercise for each of them. I was so excited to join the classes beyond Tai Chair when I retired. Starting in January of 2015, I participated in Gentle Impact twice a week and the Training Group 2 class once a week in addition to Tai Chair. I was able to start training with light weights with May’s guidance. However, I realized after several months of training four days a week that I was most looking forward to the dance fitness which May had introduced during the Gentle Impact classes. For me, this was my challenge, coordination of my hands, feet, and body to whatever rhythm May picked for the day. The music and dancing brings me such joy. I had tried Zumba, but I had learned that it is much too strenuous on my joints. May is able to use Latin music, popular music, and hip hop combined with her dance background to choreograph routines for the young and fit and for those who wish to be fit again.
When Rene Tillotson offered May an exciting opportunity to increase her range of healing through fitness at Still & Moving Center in September, 2015, I knew that no other “exercise” program was going to come close to what I had experienced with May. I left our group of exercise friends to grow in mind, body, and spirit at Still & Moving Center. In October, 2015 I joined as a Golden Circle member participating all six days a week that May teaches.
I continue to grow in the aerobic Dance Fitness classes twice a week, loosening up those hip flexors, wiggling those fingers, rotating those shoulders. I participate in the Gentle Impact Training (GIT) class with just a little heavier weights and a few dance moves. Saturday is still Tai Chair, but May has added lessons on breathing and an introduction to mediation which has empowered me to take control of my body in ways I never would have thought I could, and to relax completely.
May often remarks that she won’t let us get too comfortable; she’s always going to challenge us. The truth is she is an extremely skilled instructor with a deep knowledge of the human anatomy. She is able to immediately assess when she is pushing too hard, or not hard enough. She is quick to modify dance, stretches, and exercise when she sees one’s individual needs and abilities. Sometimes, she will suggest someone push themselves a little more; sometimes, she will insist someone not push it too hard.
May challenged me to join the Pilates with Ball and Mat class twice a week. I have progressed to a level of fitness far beyond what I could have imagined two and half years ago when I could barely balance holding on to the chair. Now, I’m learning to balance ON THE BALL!
As a former soccer player, as a former teacher, I have had coaches throughout my life. I know May Del Rosario is the most valuable coach I have had because she in coaching me into a long and healthy life.
(Age 63 and not ashamed to be getting fit)
April 14, 2016