Opening Hearts and Minds: Inner IDEA® Report

by Joy Keller on Nov 21, 2012

This year’s 7th annual Inner IDEA® Conference was a breakthrough experience for the 450 Pilates and yoga instructors, personal trainers, mind-body studio owners and wellness professionals who attended. Those who chose to take this journey to wholeness shared an inner vision of a larger community where mind, body and spirit are all supported equally. The tranquil refuge of La Quinta Resort & Spa in Palm Springs was the setting for more than 100 sessions that explored positive psychology, holistic nutrition, energy medicine and the very latest research-based trends in yoga and Pilates.

Here are some highlights from this year’s transformative event:

  • Pilates instructors enjoyed advanced clinics on mindful form and function, including diverse viewpoints on biomechanics, progressions, and integration of small equipment. However, tradition held court at the core of the education, as experts never wavered on the importance of a deeply rooted foundation. “Whenever someone asked Joseph Pilates what a particular exercise was for [meaning which part of the anatomy], he always answered ‘the body. This exercise is for the body,’” said Kathy Corey, director of Kathy Corey Pilates in Del Mar, California, during her session “Pilates Core Challenge by CoreFitnessRoller™.”
  • Yoga practitioners and teachers were treated to sessions on giving proper and safe adjustments, sequencing for core work, pranayama and pure practice. Many schools of thought were represented at the conference, but unifying themes were professionalism, compassion, education and ethics. In his session on therapeutic asana adjustments, Eden Goldman, DC, a Los Angeles–based chiropractor and yoga therapist, reminded attendees that “yoga isn’t about showing off; it’s about tuning in.”
  • Positive psychology, a relatively new field of study, is making headway as wellness professionals shift the focus from what is wrong to what is right (and how to make things even better). In his keynote presentation, “There Is No App for Happiness,” Max Strong, author of A Life Worth Breathing, talked about how the ubiquitousness of technology does not correlate to happiness. He suggested that people “accelerate their personal evolution and learn a daily regime that both heals and empowers,” separate from the sanctity of a smartphone.
  • Accepting this year’s Inner IDEA Inspiration Award, Lindsay and Moira Merrithew, co-founders of Merrithew Health & Fitness™, spoke of the evolution of Pilates in their personal and professional lives. Their insight into intelligent and mindful programming helped set the stage for the remainder of the weekend.

The Inner IDEA Conference touched many lives on many levels, and its high-vibration education has a far reach. Attendee Alexia Cervantes, director of FitLife at UC San Diego Recreation, says this event is about much more than getting continuing education credits. “Inner IDEA is rejuvenating,” she says. “I am able to reconnect on many levels professionally and personally. The presenters are intelligent and generous. I am so relaxed at La Quinta that I am able to open my heart and mind while learning.”

To read IDEA senior editor Joy Keller’s onsite blog from the Inner IDEA Conference, visit

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About the Author

Joy Keller

Joy Keller IDEA Author/Presenter

Joy Keller is executive editor of IDEA Fitness Journal and IDEA Fit Business Success, and is also a certified personal trainer, indoor cycling instructor, yoga teacher (RYT 200) and Reiki Master. Joy joined IDEA Health & Fitness Association in 2002, and brought with her a wealth of information about how to fine-tune communication channels, after having spent her formative career years specializing in business-to-business journalism. Before she even graduated with honors from the respected University of Georgia journalism school, Joy was offered a job at one of the most successful trade publishing companies in the southeast, Shore Varrone, Inc. She made her mark in the automotive aftermarket industry as a creative thinker and journalist with an intuitive knack for researching and understanding niche audiences. Joy has worked on several titles, including Auto Trim & Restyling News, Truck Accessory News, Digital Output Magazine, Retail & Construction News, Miata magazine, Ford Racing, and many more. Her passion, however, lies with health and fitness. She was the associate editor of ACE Certified News while working at the American Council on Exercise, and transitioned that publication from a newsletter to a magazine. She has enjoyed 17 years at IDEA, where she has launched several publications, including the award-winning Inner IDEA Body-Mind Spirit Review, IDEA Pilates Today and IDEA Fit Business Success. Joy is a content creator and media 2.0 advocate who takes pride in discovering the unique information needs of qualified audiences, and she is dedicated to serving those needs while following the highest available standards.