Starting Pilates: Where Should I Be Feeling It? Advice For Instructors And Clients.
Whether you are just starting Pilates training or are an experienced instructor, the question “Where should I be feeling it?” comes up a lot. And that makes sense! How you move and where you feel the impact of an exercise can seem like a powerful indicator of doing something right, or wrong. But what if you don’t know the answer? Should you tell clients where they should be feeling their movement? And what works better, internal or external cueing? We discuss how to apply lessons in a real-life studio setting to facilitate motor learning in our clients as movement professionals, why we still see Pilates instructors using internal cues, and we explore if that approach empowers our clients.
What You Will Learn:
- What external cueing is and why it inspires motor learning
- Why it’s not a problem if your clients don’t feel a move where you expected
- How to inspire ease and efficiency of movement in the studio
- Why we should work towards empowering our clients to have a good workout rather than being too prescriptive
- Why micromanaging client’s bodies is against the ethos of supporting them to be fearless movers
Am I Getting it Wrong?
Instructors can sometimes feel anxious about whether clients should be feeling an exercise in a particular position, especially when clients are just starting Pilates — and what if they’re not feeling it where we expect? Does that mean they’re doing it wrong, or am I teaching it wrong? Our clients can feel anxious too if this is a new experience for them and they are worried about “getting it right”. Let’s walk through a few primers on how to go about helping clients.
We are all Different
Human beings are unique and fascinating, and crucially, we’re all different. It’s okay if I feel a movement somewhere other than you feel it, we’re a variety of shapes and sizes, and it’s totally normal to feel the effects of exercise differently. We want to inspire ease and efficiency of movement, not prescribe how others should feel in movement.
Flip the Narrative
Instead of telling clients, especially clients just starting Pilates, where they should be feeling it, or to squeeze this and engage that, activate this and align that, think about how to challenge and inspire them to move confidently and fearlessly. As movement professionals, we can decide to flip the narrative and work towards the ultimate goal of empowering our clients to have a good workout.
About Raphael and Cloe:
Raphael Bender, CEO, Breathe Education
Raph believes everyone deserves the opportunity to transform into a better version of themselves. His main strength as a teacher and movement professional is the ability to distill complex research findings into a simple, science-based approach to help people move fearlessly, thoughtlessly, and painlessly. He LOVES running, weights, cycling, and Contrology.
Raph holds a Master’s degree in Clinical Exercise Physiology (Rehabilitation), a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise and Sports Science, Diploma of Pilates Movement Therapy, and STOTT PILATES full certification.
Cloe Bunter, Training Manager, Breathe Education
With 8+ years in the industry, both teaching Pilates and nurturing new instructors, Cloe is passionate about empowering new and seasoned instructors to think critically and move fearlessly. Empowered instructors empower their clients, and in turn, change lives.
She finds great joy in building connections with clients, students, colleagues, and the broader movement and rehab community. Co-hosting the Pilates Elephants Podcast, with Raphael Bender, has provided an incredible platform to bust common Pilates, movement, and rehab myths whilst creating a worldwide community of critical thinkers who are elevating health literacy.
Cloe is fascinated by movement in general, and its ability to enhance our lives, at any age. Her own movement practice includes Contrology/Pilates, running, weights, and kettlebells. She has a Diploma of Clinical Pilates, Cert IV in Pilates, and Cert IV in Training and Assessing.
How to Connect with Raphael and Cloe:
- You can find Breathe Education online here
- You can find Cloe Bunter on Instagram here: @cloebunterpilates
- You can find Raphael Bender on Instagram here: @the_raphaelbender
Our Pilates instructor training is 100 percent online, so you can study from anywhere in the world.
Earn recognition: Your Breathe Education Pilates qualifications are recognized by the Australian Government, Exercise & Sport Science Australia, and all major insurers.
Build your skills: with our pilates instructor training, you’ll learn the original Contrology exercises created by Joseph Pilates. Plus, you’ll learn the most current, science-based ways to cue and program those exercises, how to work with injured and pregnant clients, and nurture beginners.
Gain confidence: Learning is fun and easy when you engage with our state-of-the-art eLearning system, filled with straightforward, relevant content and structured to guide your training as you build skills and confidence.
Feel supported: You’ll learn world-class problem-solving skills, not just a list of answers. Our student success team and trainers will provide you with all the guidance, challenge, and support you’ll need to become what you want to become.
Take your first step to becoming a certified Pilates instructor by scheduling a 20-minute Discovery Call with us here.