Izabella Angelova is a recent HFE Pilates graduate and Head of Brand and PR for Europe’s number 1 sports retailer Decathlon. We recently caught up with her to discover more about her experiences.
Considering you have a wealth of marketing experience across a range of industries, what inspired you to pursue a Pilates qualification?
I am a very active person and I enjoy constantly developing myself and learning new things. I started practising Pilates about eight years ago as I had back problems and I simply fell in love with it. Later on, I also pursued yoga and I am currently certifying myself as a yoga instructor as well. Why? My intentions at first were purely connected to my desire to learn more about those two practices and be able to perform each exercise/asana correctly.
Now, it has developed into something much more meaningful. I would like to inspire and encourage people to try and practice Pilates and yoga. I would like to break myths such as ‘only flexible people can practice’ and ‘yoga and Pilates are expensive and elitist disciplines’. I believe that those two practices should be accessible for everyone and people should understand that there are no age or body shape restrictions.
From your time studying with HFE, what have been some of your best memories?
My teacher Angela, my classmates, one of our examiners Karen, they were all very knowledgeable and passionate, it was a great experience.
Now you’ve qualified, what do you plan to do with your newfound Pilates skills?
For now, I am only teaching at work, my colleagues really enjoy the classes and are really excited to be able to practice regularly. For the future, I am not sure yet. Probably, I will look into finding one to one clients, as I would be interested to work on personalised programmes as well as in group settings.
By day, you’re the Head of Brand and PR for Decathlon and you specifically look after yoga and Pilates. What is it about these two disciplines that makes them so universally popular?
I believe it’s the benefits both Pilates and yoga can provide to each individual. You can improve your posture, tone your muscles, improve flexibility, digestion and so much more! Yoga is also great for stress relief and Pilates is amazing for rehabilitation, so there are numerous ways in which those two disciplines are amazing and everyone can find some benefits by practising them on regular basis.
And finally, since you are in charge of yoga and Pilates, what are some of your favourite pieces of clothing to wear and equipment to use?
Now, I don’t want this to sound like it’s an advertisement for Decathlon, but I really love those two items, my yoga mat, it’s great as it has all the alignment lines which are really handy, and my yoga pants, I have few of them, and I wear them almost all the time.