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How to choose a Pilates studio? It’s not a silly question to ask.

_B2A5688Pilates is the perfect lifestyle approach to exercise. Since its inception in the early 1920s, the body of work created by Joseph Pilates based on his system of floor work and spring based exercises, has become the go to exercise of choice.

As we work longer hours and have a more sedentary lifestyle, the benefits of Pilates have become a real game changer. Age is certainly no barrier.

It is an exercise method that can benefit all populations from professional athletes, dancers, office workers, the elderly and those wanting to enhance their strength, tone, health and wellness. Whether it be for rehabilitation, pre or postnatal clients, controlling arthritis or musculoskeletal pain and stiffness such as fibromyalgia to name a few, it caters for all fitness levels.

With so many studios popping up and Pilates being offered in many Gyms and Recreational Centres as part of their Health and Wellbeing programmes, how do you ensure you are in the right hands?

What to look for when choosing your Pilates studio:

  1. Is the studio/practitioner registered with an affiliated membership body? For example members affiliated with the Pilates Alliance Australasia (PAA), must have undertaken a comprehensive education program, which meets strict standards and criteria, including a minimum of 500 hours of Pilates specific training.
  1. Do the instructors undertake regular Professional Development (this is essential as a member of PAA) and do they hold current Professional Indemnity Insurance and an updated First Aid Certificate? All members must adhere to the Indemnity Insurance guidelines set by PAA. For all insurance guidelines, head here. PAA Members are also required to complete 20 Professional Development Points (PDP’s) every 2 years, whereby each hour of full contact and assessment equates to 1PDP. For more information about PAA’s continuing Professional Development criteria, click here.
  1. How long has the studio been in operation/instructor been practising? Are they able to meet your requirements? I have been teaching Pilates in Perth for over 12 years and have attained my Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction, with the industry leading Pilates International Training Centre (PITC), in Sydney. I also hold Level 3 Membership with the PAA.
  1. All studios will have their own style of teaching and management practices. As a new client, you need to ensure you choose the appropriate class for you. If you are starting your Pilates journey for the first time and have been referred by a doctor or Allied Health Professional, working in a studio environment may be the best option for you. This is an opportunity for the instructor to screen your pathologies and ensure this is the appropriate pathway for you. This can all be achieved via an Initial Consultation. It is the ideal forum for the instructor to assess your requirements and tailor an appropriate program that meets your needs. Should your injury, be out of the scope of practise for a Pilates practitioner, you will be referred to the appropriate professional. For more information about my private classes, head here.
  1. If you enjoy exercising in a group environment, love the camaraderie of attending a mat class with your friend, partner or colleague and are fit and injury free, this could be the ideal option for you. Mat classes utilise your own body weight and may integrate the use of small props ie toning balls, therabands for resistance. At pilatesnow, there is a maximum of 10 participants in each mat class to ensure adequate supervision and technique throughout. For more information about my mat classes, head here.

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