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What is the best way to take a Pilates class or session?

Live Pilates vs Pre-Recorded Pilates Videos?

How do you normal take your Pilates Session?

  • 0%In a Pilates Studio with an Instructor

  • 0%Online with a Virtual Instructor

  • 0%Following Pre-Recorded Pilates Classes/an OnDemand Library

You can vote for more than one answer.

Honestly, any Pilates in my opinion is better than none. I know Joseph Pilates never would have imagined we’d ever be in this new virtual platform, but I do have to admit even he would probably agree that there are benefits to all forms of Pilates. Back in the day Joseph Pilates was able to publish a Book, Return To Life, with step-by-step instructions and images for each exercise, and now we can just make videos! There are a few videos of Joseph Pilates demonstrating on video but they're so old they seem more like watching a flip book versus seeing something on film.

Personally, I like having a variety of options; taking a class in person, online live with an instructor or by pressing play on a video and getting started. There are pros and cons to all of these options. The ideal form Joseph Pilates meant to have his method practiced was in the studio with his apparatus moving around the room during your session but even he was realistic. Joe knew most of his clients in NYC, himself included, would leave the city for the summer so he had to make his method more realistic to stay consistent. This is where his book came in handy for at home mat practice, he also invented the Wunda Chair as an apparatus to use for a workout as well as furniture for your living room. I think if in his days he had an option to get his method to more people he would have taken it, Joe always envisioned everyone doing his method to stay healthy.

I think Pilates is truly evolving with the times, it’s actually becoming even more accessible with the virtual platforms and now on demand platforms as well. When I first started doing pilates over 10 years ago, I had never seen the equipment or exercises until I set foot into a studio myself, now the virtual platforms and google search bring you to videos on YouTube to fitness apps and beyond showing the method to anyone who’s willing to search, in tern people have heard the term Pilates a lot more now than a decade ago.

Zoom Class with my Pilates sister Marta!

I have clients who don’t have time in their schedule or aren’t close enough to a studio with equipment so at home workouts via virtual sessions are the most realistic and most consistent way they can continue their practice. I also have clients who have mentioned liking having the on demand videos since their schedule isn’t solid enough to commit to a weekly scheduled class/private. They like the convenience of being able to just set their mat out and do their workout, whenever they can squeeze it into their busy schedule, between the kid shuffle and work demands it’s much more realistic for their lives. I do have to say it’s also a lot more cost efficient depending on your financial freedom, it’s another way to make Pilates more accessible to everybody all over the world!

I usually aim to attend online virtual classes during the week with the eye of a well trained instructor to cue and correct me as I'm moving and then I trickle in OnDemand videos for the rest of the week. It’s ideal when I only have 20-30mins to dedicate to a workout, this way I won’t make excuses, I just push play and go, any movement with intention is better than not. After my Crohn’s disease diagnosis I quickly learned I have to let my body decide when it wants to move, some days I have more energy than others, this is why having access to an OnDemand pilates library is even more ideal, I can just press play and get grooving. This means I can still be in my pj’s or don’t even have to get myself camera ready, just me tuning into my body and catering to what it needs that day can have even more benefits, it’s not me performing the best version of the exercise like I would in a group class with all eyes on me, it’s me learning to see what my body needs, whether that be a modification or if I need to add more reps as my body breathes into the movement, or even grab some props or leave them out. It’s a little more zen sometimes this way.

Now there are even ways to get certified in pilates completely virtually! That’s insane to me, back in the day I had to travel to wherever the certification was being hosted. Check out the Power Pilates Mat Academy to see what their virtual certification entails, you’ll meet with amazing teacher trainers along with completing videos courses set up specifically for you to be able to do at your own convenience.

I just recently started to build my SVVP OnDemand Library, I had started back at the start of quarantine in 2020 with recording live with me via IGTV and Facebook. Here is a sample of what I am hoping to continue adding to the library. I would love you to use the comments below if you have any requests for what you’d like to see on the SVVP library as I set up my filming schedule!

The classical pilates company I usually log in for my OnDemand classes is Pilatesology. I love how they have different search options depending on what timeframe you have, what apparatus or level you want to take. There are so many amazing instructors I would otherwise never have access to, I get to learn new things from each class and even some archival history about different exercises and the lineage of the method. It truly helps keep my interest and fascination with the pilates method alive!

You could also check with a lot of virtual pilates studios, if you notify them ahead of time saying you can’t attend the virtual class, sometimes they will record the class for you and usually allow 24hrs to take the class on your own from the live recording, it’s worth asking!

Check out my 4-Rep Beginner Mat Video and a few others with the button below!

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