Find Pilates Teachers for your Studio
As a Pilates studio owner I kept wondering..why can’t I find the Pilates Teachers I need for my studio? Many of the Certified Pilates Teachers who came to my Pilates studio had been through some form of Pilates Teacher training or full training and many even though Certified Pilates Teachers, they didn’t really know how to be a Pilates teacher. I was desperate for really good Pilates teachers who shared my vision, knew the Pilates work but also knew how to teach Pilates to clients. That skill seemed to be missing. The true understanding of Pilates and teaching Pilates. I also wanted some consistency in my studio in the Pilates teachers and for the clients.
When I opened my studio I didn’t really think about how hard it might be to find teachers to join me. Recently a fellow Pilates pal said, “Pilates teachers don’t grow on trees”. True words! I would interview them and on paper, it all looked great. They were certified, had gone through over 450 hours of training and all seemed in order.
Some of the issues I seemed to keep running into with hiring teachers were:
*They didn’t have any real passion for the work
*Came in, trained the client (sometimes with the exact same workout they gave every client that week).
*They may have known the choreography but, they didn’t really understand why they were giving the exercises they were to that client
*They didn’t understand how to progress their clients in safe and challenging ways
*Didn’t seem to want to continue to grow as teachers
As the years went by I continued to have a hard time finding good Pilates teachers. I also found that with each teacher coming from a different training or coming from another studio to mine, they taught differently enough that clients became so attached to only their teacher and wouldn’t use a sub or if that teacher left the studio those clients stopped coming because “their” teacher had left. I realized that my business was being impacted by this and my whole vision of my studio had been a community and as time went on and my desperation for teachers continued this community was not existing.
I realized that with all my years of teaching and my experience I knew exactly what I wanted in a teacher and what I felt was missing for me. I knew I wanted teachers that didn’t just know choreography. I wanted them to understand the work of Joseph Pilates and to dig deep into the connections, the why and how of each exercise and the building to get a client to where they could go in terms of movement. I wanted them to “see” the body in front of them and not treat every client as if it was the same body each hour and each day.
Running a studio just on the daily is a lot of work right? On top of all the emails, calls, marketing, and all the studio business that we have, then we have our own clients and to have to worry about teachers in our space, covering clients with subs or new teachers, getting teachers for evenings or weekends is a lot of time and money spent. I was beyond stressed out!
Then the little Pollyanna in me thought well, I will just train my own teachers. Little did I know the work this would entail but, I set off to do it! It took me over a year to develop my Teacher Training Program and then over the years fine tune and get it how I wanted it to be for potential students. Now, many years later the Program has graduated intuitive, passionate and focused teachers who not only know the Traditional Method but, have the teaching skills to Assess the client on a daily basis and see what that body in front of them needs, they know how to take that body where it can go. The best thing that happened was over time as the teaching in the studio became consistent and everyone was trained through the program, the clients noticed. Clients who never, ever wanted a sub. Would refuse no matter what suddenly asked for a sub. They are using all the teachers and like that even though the verbiage of “style” of that teacher is different, the work, the purpose and the feedback to them is consistent. For me, it has been a huge weight off my shoulders. I don’t want any studio owner to have to do what I did. Back then it worked for me but, it was so hard to do all the studio things and create my Program. I know that times have changed as well and Pilates has really exploded in terms of clients looking for Pilates. So I am so glad that I can bring my Program to help studio owners in a way that wasn’t available to me with what I really wanted in teachers.
The community is strong and both teachers and clients are more connected. I know so many studio owners have the same problem as I am constantly getting emails, texts, and calls asking for anyone in my program that is looking for a studio to teach at or that I would refer out to them. We are all in that same boat or should I say tree? Let’s just say I am trying to grow good teachers for the Pilates world!
XOXO Hilary Opheim
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