Pilates Hobby or Career – Is it just Pocket Money?
A Pilates career as a Pilates teacher probably started out and some may still do so, as just a hobby. Some may not have any formal qualifications – does that make them bad?
I am a great believer in the fact that you don’t ‘have’ to have any formal qualifications in a number of fields to successfully practice your art. For example Richard Branson doesn’t have any formal qualification in marketing, from my research he doesn’t hold a degree in marketing. So why would you listen to him and not my son who holds a degree in marketing? If Arnold Schwarzenegger were to give you bodybuilding tips why would you listen, he has no formal qualifications?
If you can do, and know how to instruct surely that is enough. After all in this country at the moment anyone can go take up teaching Pilates. And to be honest some would do a better job than some who have formal qualifications in the subject.
Yet every profession has a set of standards that ‘guide’ them forward in the educational process. In choosing a College or university you try and choose accredited Colleges etc, with good reputation. I believe that Pilates teacher training should be of a similar nature.
So just What is Pilates anyhow?
Getting started in your Pilates career starts with, choosing which organisation to go with, and understanding what they stand for. Not all schools are equal, lets face it not everyone can agree on just what is Pilates. How much can you move away from the actual teachings of Joseph Pilates – and still get to call it “Pilates”? For that matter today, just what qualifies as Pilates?
There are Pilates teacher training establishments that just teach ‘his; original 34 mat exercises, and nothing else. No adaptations, or alterations at all! Others have come so far away and detached from Joseph Pilates original movements and principles, and have distorted and altered the principles so much that it could hardly be called Pilates. Yet others, though highly qualified have merely dressed physiotherapy up and called it Pilates from a purely marketing perspective, what they are doing is ‘just’ physiotherapy!
Want a Hobby or a Pilates career?
If you are a Pilates Teacher, then like me, and many others you probably just started out as a hobby. I bet you never dreamt of making a career out of it. I was always told, ‘there is no money in Pilates’. It was very part-time, part of the time work. I would get told to go find myself a proper job.
And now, my Pilates has evolved into a full time career for both myself and my wife. I work mainly with more mature ladies, but also have top notch athletes, and sports people requiring rehabilitation, in the form of Pilates and the Pilates reformer machine.
Our clients may not know us as individuals but I feel they need the reassurance that we stand behind a formal qualification, with the skills and knowledge to provide them with the best professional care. They should feel that through this qualification process they can trust our brand. And I don’t just mean my own specific – Elite Pilates Teacher training brand.
I doubt however the differing and bickering fractions within Pilates eg Classical vs Contemporary, would be able to sit down ‘together at the table of the brotherhood’, to thrash out some sort of agreement on formal qualifications.
As such there are many and varying schools teaching something resembling Pilates. Some will dress it up as something very complex and involved, and as such charge a small fortune. Whilst others will stay true to ‘his’ teachings and may still charge a small fortune!
That being said, if you are not looking for a career or any Pilates teacher training, merely a Pilates class to attend, then I am a great advocate of ‘the proof of the pudding is I the eating’. Do you get or are you getting the results that you want?
I am looking forward to hearing your opinions about it and how we should shape the future of Pilates together.
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Lots of love from Newton Abbot Devon
Paul & Tanja xxx