My name is Aakruti Jagmohan. I’m an entrepreneur, a journalist, a traveller, a dreamer, a go-getter and a Pilates teacher. I was born in Bombay and brought up in Bangalore. After I finished my schooling in the latter city, I went to pursue my undergraduate studies in Boston, MA (USA) where I studied journalism, psychology and photography.
I’ve been through various experiences so far, that have brought me to this stage of life. I’ve set up a business that represents a culmination of things, experiences and memories - all that make me the person that I am today. And now, that person is represented by Arth Ventures, a brand that currently has two verticals - Organic Skincare and Fitness.
Arth Ventures is a brand that is and aims to remain clean, green, rooted and focused on personal growth (physical, mental, emotional) - and to build equity in the future.
Who or what inspired you to do what you’re doing now?
I’ve always been involved in athletics, in some form of the other. My immediate inspiration was my mother - who was a district-level basketball player. I followed her footsteps to play basketball for Karnataka. As I was growing up, I learned about my family history - my grandmother was one of the first few people in the country to run short distance races, that too, in a saree! My great grandfather was into physical education as well - he used to practice Yogasana every morning, every single day - he lived to be a 101. So, the more I learned about my family, the more it encouraged me to try new things, follow old traditions and continue to move in some form, every single day!
How did you start practice?
Fitness has been an important part of my everyday life. I’ve always been one to move in some form or the other. What made me become a Pilates teacher was actually an opportunity that presented itself, when I was not looking for it. I’ve always been curious about the movement form. I’ve been practicing yoga for a while, and so, I thought there was something left to be explored here. So, I took the brave step, explored, learned and here we are today.
What were some of your initial experiences like?
Pilates slowed me down and really made fall in love with the human body all over again.
I started to be more mindful as to how my body was feeling and moving. I started to understand how small movements made big impacts as well. This was just the initial rendezvous - this with the growing love for movement and Pilates is where I am currently.
Basic techniques for a Beginner?
Understanding one's own body - how it’s feeling, why it’s feeling it, etc. That with the eagerness to slow down, interpret and execute it specifically for your own body. Try not to emulate someone else’s movement, your body is unique to you. Once you starting listening to your body, start with everyday movements such as walking, dancing, swaying to music, or even yoga. Take it slow, there’s no need to race to become an expert - everyday is a learning.
What are the different steps involved in learning the sport
I’d like to put it into four simple words - Practice, Patience, Perseverance and Progress. You pick up a sport or a form of movement, you cannot expect to master the art overnight. It takes the aforementioned terms to become a pioneer in your field and even then, the learning never stops. So one must be eager to learn, grow and then impart the knowledge to those around you.
What keeps you going?
Results and the feeling of aiding someone to get stronger physically, mentally and, emotionally. What keeps me going is also the support I receive not just from near and dear ones but also from the Pilates community across the world.
What would you consider to be your biggest achievement so far?
Letting my movements speak and garner feedback from the experienced mentors in the field of Pilates. But if I have to pick something - it would have to be the brands, with positive and healthy intentions, that are reaching out to collaborate in terms of conducting classes, talking about Pilates or even raise awareness about health and nutrition. This still boils down to my movements speaking for me.
How do you structure your days?
My days are based on my clients. I, however, ensure that I don’t overwhelm and overwork myself, so I schedule my week with certain hours of the day slotted for downtime where I rest, create content and practice. Then there are a few hours left for last-minute scheduling of classes.
Are you on a Diet?
I’m not on a diet and I definitely don’t believe in them. I do, however, steer clear from dairy and gluten as my skin and stomach refuse to comply with them.
What equipment do you find indispensable for accomplishing your practice?
My mind, body and spirit.
What do you find are the biggest challenges and what are the best ways you’ve found to overcome them?
My biggest challenge, especially in this lockdown is to self motivate. To wake up every day ready to teach, learn, move and grow. Sometimes it becomes a herculean task to do things that are generally second nature to me. What I realise is that on days that I feel low and out, my body and mind are telling me to essentially take a break and prioritise myself (physically, mentally and emotionally) - take the time out to recharge, so to speak.
Any Advice that you want to give to enthusiastic beginners?
Don’t feel the need to emulate someone. It’s easy to want to look like someone, and that too, at the snap of a finger. It’s good to be enthusiastic but it’s rewarding to be patient.
Learn to listen to and understand your body, it’s unique to you. What works for someone else may not work for you, and so, love your body and work toward making it stronger from within, aesthetically your body will shape up as a byproduct.
What’s next for you?
To continue to learn, grow and teach. Hopefully, once the world is in a better place and I’m allowed to travel, I would love to add to my existing trunk of knowledge, so I can impart the same. Eventually, I would love to create my own eco-friendly biosphere which would have my studio among other things.