Whether you have just qualified or you have been teaching for a long time, you will reach a point in your Pilates career when you start to ask yourself
“What do I do next?”
You may be teaching for a gym or leisure centre, or you may be teaching your own classes in the community, and whilst you may love what you are doing, you may start to feel things getting a little stale, or you are feeling a little drained with what you are doing day in and day out.
This does happen, because as teachers/coaches in the fitness industry, Pilates can be a particularly draining experience. There are expectations of Pilates that go far and beyond a simple exercise class. So what can you do to keep yourself feeling fresh as a coach, and still loving what you do? Well, you can do lots of different training programmes that will enhance and develop your skill set and as we all know these can be very motivating and give us the boost we need sometimes as we pick up fresh ideas for cueing, trying different teaching techniques, and for the opportunities to meet other teachers/coaches etc. There are other areas that you may feel you want advice and ideas about … such as:
Do I continue to work for a gym? It’s pretty easy; turn up, teach, walk away again … nothing wrong with that, but how long do I want to do that for, and how many of those classes do I need to do to earn a living?
Do I want to make Pilates my business, my career?
Do I want to take my Pilates into different areas of health and wellbeing?
How do I continue to teach great content?
How do I keep people wanting to come to my classes?
Do I make my classes for all, or am I happy to turn people away if they have x, y, z health issues?
I know what I can’t teach to someone with osteoporosis, but I don’t know what I can teach?
How can I integrate clients with different needs into a mixed level class?
What are my aims for my Pilates business?
Should I open a Pilates Studio?
How much should I charge for 1–2–1 Pilates programmes?
These are just a few examples of questions asked on my one-to-one mentoring programme, and for every question here I am sure you have several of your own. Areas that could make all the difference to how you feel about your classes, maybe providing you with more focus on what you want to achieve with your Pilates and therefore maintain motivation and desire to teach. It may be that you just want to find a support network to hang out with, as sharing is a way of developing and growing in confidence. Sometimes it’s not the technical or the specialist areas you need, it’s the every day, routine business of teaching Pilates that needs to be addressed. After 20 years of teaching Pilates, I have taught in gyms, health clubs, leisure centres, community classes, I have travelled to peoples homes to teach them 1–2–1 sessions, I have worked in businesses offering corporate classes, I have done free sessions for Cancer Groups, NHS groups, Groups of Teachers at team-building days, I have gone into schools and taught 6th Formers, I have worked with Olympic athletes, professional footballers, I have opened my own studio, I have hired venues throughout the county, I have a fabulous team who teach with me, I have assessed and taught other teachers in the Gym Instructors, Exercise to Music and the Pilates programmes for the YMCA Awards… it hasn’t always been successful, but I have learnt a lot, and I have learnt how to stay motivated and how to use those experiences to help me develop. So what’s next for me is the opportunity to share my experience with others…. So what’s next in your Pilates world? Written by: Jane M Thomas of Jane Thomas Pilates, as featured on the BBC.
First Class Pilates — Pilates Done Right!
First Class Pilates — 9 Great Central Road — Loughborough — LE11 1RW
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