Anula Maiberg is not your typical Pilates instructor: with her bleach blonde hair and shaved head, tattoos, and full figure, she provides a refreshing representation of what the “Pilates body” actually is.
Walking into a Pilates class can be incredibly intimidating. The majority of students – not to mention the instructor – are toned and taut, lithe and chiseled. If your body isn’t already all of those things, a Pilates class can be a daunting experience. Maiberg’s presence, at her studio in New York City and in the MarchMatness hashtag campaign, quashes the idea that we all must look the same to enjoy the mental and physical strength and sense of calm that Pilates gives those who practice it.
Taking part in MarchMatness – where flocks of Pilates instructors and students posted photos of themselves in their favorite positions on their mats on Instagram– was naturally nerve-wracking for Maiberg. Ultimately, though, she opted to take part, as one of the MarchMatness Ambassadors no less. In a recent feature with Well + Good, Maiberg said, “I was afraid that all the comments would be 'Why is this fat girl doing Pilates?'”
But the opposite was true.
“People on Facebook and the MarchMatness site left comments saying it was nice to see different shapes represented. Some people even said I made them realize that they could also do Pilates, and that it wasn’t only for skinny girls and ballerinas. It was worth the fear of being in the spotlight.”The photos of Maiberg are inspiring not just for her serious Pilates skills, but her enviable wardrobe. “The dress photos were shot in my actual room in my house, I just tried on dresses and did the mat work.” She consistently rocks colorful, vintage dresses and vibrant American Apparel leggings. Maiberg’s style and personality shine through in everything she does, and we love her for embodying the power that Pilates gives.
Be sure to follow Maiberg’s Instagram, @sixthstreetpilates, to see more impressive pics and upcoming events.
Photos via Instagram/Anula Maiberg
More from BUST