Should I Have a Pilates Teaching Specialty?

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When beginning your Pilates teacher training certification program, your eyes should stay on the prize(s):

Learning the motivation for and purpose of each exercise, as developed by Joseph Pilates
Understanding the significance of the Classical order of the exercises
Knowing the choreography for all the exercises
Having a comprehensive understanding of each piece of equipment and how they can complement each other
Working with props and knowing and how and when you might use each
Finding your own teaching style including how you’ll cue students for maximum comprehension
Developing a functional knowledge of anatomy and biomechanics

At Core Pilates NYC, we pride ourselves on having one of the most comprehensive training programs in New York City. Students will learn all of the above – and then some.

What makes CPNYC so unique? According to Michelle Fama, founder of Core Pilates NYC, “To start with we have no surprise hidden fees and we include the beginner and intermediate mat systems as part of the 6 month immersion. Other certification programs require those modules to be taken separately which can jam up the timing and make it harder for a prospective teacher training student to coordinate. Marketability of a teacher is also a big focus for our program which is why we INCLUDE a professional development day where our enrolled students learn our top class formats so they hit the ground running and ready for any group class experience.”

Whether it’s by design or a happy accident/discovery, many of our teachers also have one or more teaching specialties in addition to comprehensive knowledge of Pilates fundamentals. These areas of focus include such things as:

Pre- and post-natal Pilates
Pilates for golfers (or runners, or tennis players, or other types of athletes)
Pilates for people with neurological conditions, such as MS or Parkinson’s or a traumatic brain injury
Pilates for people who have spinal herniations or chronic back pain
Pilates for people who have – or are recovering from treatment for – cancer
Pilates for people who have arthritis and joint pain
Pilates for people who are recovering from knee, hip or shoulder replacement surgery
Pilates for the aging population
And one of the original specialties… Pilates for dancers!

This list is just to provide an idea of the areas in which a teacher might specialize.

Ask yourself: Is there something specific about you or your body that might make that appealing as a specialty? For me, it’s back pain. I’ve battled it most of my adult life, so I’ve done a lot of research on how to treat it medically, surgically and through Pilates. It excites me to bring this learning to my students. I’m also a runner and a golfer, so I enjoy working with my athlete students as well.

As long as there’s a need for a certain specialization, you can do it – and make a business of it!

Says Michelle, “I remember learning in journalism school to not be a generalist! To specialize in something. I think it rings true in Pilates. Keeping the foundation strong for the general population is important but keeping an edge, a focus toward any specialization not only separates one from the competition but keeps the passion within to avoid burn out.  There is always so much to learn to bring our awareness deeper. And choosing a specialty to deepen is easy in Pilates.”


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