We had the good fortune of connecting with Aly Mattoon and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Aly, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
This question is extremely relevant right now as I think we are all trying to find balance during these times. Working from home has brought on new challenges in finding work life balance for me. I have found that work never seems to end but I’m learning that it must end. Naturally this was easier to define when I worked away from home but I’ve always been someone who lets anything on my mind fully consume me. I’ve gotten out of bed and emailed students at 2 am, which is crazy. I think this is even harder to balance when you care so much about what you do. My stance on work life balance in this moment is that it takes discipline, setting boundaries, enforcing these boundaries, practice, and some deep breaths.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I think my work ethic is really what’s gotten me where I am today. I knew I wanted to be a professional dancer at the age of eight so I put my blinders on and went for it. I knew I wanted to teach movement and fitness so I went for that. Teaching was a natural next step after my dance career and something I was able to do throughout. I don’t think my journey has been particularly easy, but probably because I tend to make things harder than they need to be. It’s always taken me a little longer to get to where I want to go but I always get there. Perhaps it’s because I analyze my process a little too much. I’ve learned that it’s okay to not be one hundred percent and that calmly approaching a task can provide even better outcomes than anxiously approaching it. I want the world to know that my brand and story are really an authentic part of who I am and how I view movement, human’s and fitness. My goal is to guide people in a way that brings awareness, empowerment and ownership. Movement makes me feel the most balanced and alive and I can’t help but want to share that.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Mmmm. This questions is especially exciting to think about since I haven’t been able to do any of these things. I really love Gjelina in Venice. I have taken friends and family there over the years and I’ve never had a bad experience. I would also look for a fun place to go salsa dancing, as I just started to get into that. It would be fun to do a class at LA Descarga with Jose then practice. But if there are kids involved I would suggest we all go check out Descanso Gardens then go eat authentic dumplings at Mama Lu’s Dumpling house in Monterey Park
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
A cool partnership with two of my Pilates student friends and mom coaches, Kazia Cumbler and Robyn Murgio blossomed during the Pandemic. We brought all of our creative ideas to fruition recently and I’m thankful for our relationship. We exemplify women supporting women. Kazia and Robyn run the parent support group Mama Needs a Drink. They had just secured a small space for their classes before the pandemic hit. Luckily they have been able to host all of their meetings on zoom which has been great for me and moms who don’t live here. Robyn and Kazia came to me with the idea of putting a reformer in their space and making it a Pilates POD. I was hesitant at first as I wasn’t sure what was happening with my business but I knew I wanted to put a streaming on Pilates library together and offer reformer classes. My original vision was that people could go to the pod to do my on demand workouts and it’s happening. It’s a lovely serene space and I know we are all very proud of what we’ve managed to do together during this time. You can check it out at pilatespodla.com.