Globally Pilates is an explosive profession, there are teachers in every country around the world and from many different Pilates methodologies, Classical, contemporary and many more fusion forms of pilates. Classical Pilates is based on the original pilates repertoire on the mat featured in the book by Joseph Pilates “Return to Life through Contrology” and the 5 original pieces of pilates equipment that Joseph invented at the beginning of the twentieth century, this includes the exercises on the Reformer, Wunda Chair, Ped O Pull, High Barrel and the Cadillac. The classical system has stayed true to the breath, focus, springs and cuing of all the exercises on these pieces of equipment. Contemporary Pilates has been highly influenced by modern human mechanics, functional medicine and physiotherapy, many traditional exercises have been modified, varied or added upon to meet the needs of individuals which many have varying degrees of abilities, injuries or restrictions. Both classical and contemporary Pilates are valuable assets to the pilates lineage, they bring a rich scope of foundational exercises coupled with a modern view of bio mechanics and the human body. Both are great for different bodies and minds.
Whats important is not whether your teacher is classically trained or what country that training came from or its lineage, its the connection your teacher has to the craft, the gentle essence of caring and tutoring for students with the goal to better their health and their bodies.
Pilates like any other profession has teachers with many different movies, what you as a student need to find is a teacher who puts your needs first over honouring the methodology. Injuries, restrictions, pregnancies and the nature in which you move vastly affect how an exercise will feel on your body. Having a teacher that is mindful of your health history is the first step to guaranteeing that your pilates experience in a class will be one thats effective in helping you reach your goals but also an experience that will be safe and nurturing.
Teachers with passion, anatomical knowledge, a broad history of both the classical repertoire and contemporary approaches to injuries and restrictions is the best place to start when looking for that perfect teacher. On the one hand you want a Pilates teacher who “knows Pilates” yet on the other you want a teacher who is not rigid in their understanding of how to apply pilates to your modern 21st century body.
Founder of A Life of Energy