Becoming a Pilates teacher is overwhelming. When you are a brand new Pilates teacher you have so many exercises to remember and understand, all the different apparatus and safety issues for clients, your clients’ different issues, needs and personalities.
As the new person in the Pilates studio with Pilates teachers that have been teaching for years and years you can feel a little lost, unsure, scared and not confident in yourself or your teaching.
How often do you think, “I hope this client doesn’t get bored,” or, “This client has done Pilates longer than I have been teaching, what if they know more than me?”
I remember being that new teacher, not so confident and questioning if I knew enough. The first time I trained a client that had a knee issue, I panicked! What if I broke them? What if I did an exercise that hurt them more? I wanted to feel more confident in my teaching, even at this early stage!
Becoming a Pilates teacher is a commitment not only in the work you are learning, but dealing with clients, other teachers and the Pilates community. It can be scary and mind blowing! I hope these 3 tips will give you a bit of push, confidence and a direction that will make the voyage a little less stressful for you!
3 tips I give to all of my teachers and apprentices:
- Practice, Practice, Practice! You have probably heard of the 10,000 hours of “deliberate practice” to become world-class in any field by Malcolm Gladwell. Teacher Training students in my program keep doing those hours even after they pass their exams. Getting in the studio working with another teacher, on their own or getting a session from a mentor. Now, this is where the real work begins. Practicing and continued sessions with a mentor will help. You will truly feel and know the work. Practice never ends!
- Volunteer to help in studio: Jump in and let other teachers or the studio owner know you are willing to help with workshops, other clients, shadowing and helping as teachers goes through the session or anything that is needed. If there is administrative that deals with clients offer to help out and connect more with the people who come in and out of the studio. All of these opportunities will help you learn more about the business side, customer service and loyalty, as well as give you more opportunity to see the work taught by other teachers with more experience.
- Be a body! Sounds odd right? One of the best students to graduate from my Teacher Training Program was always willing to be a “client” for my mentee teachers in their discussions. She was able to hear different situations with clients and struggles with exercises the mentees were having even after years of teaching. She was able to get deeper into the work and understanding how exercises connected to each other, what clients needed to understand in terms of concepts in their own body, and more issues and how to handle them with clients.
One of the most rewarding moments when I am training new teachers, or helping those that have been teaching for years, is seeing that confidence in them blossom. I love seeing that shift from when we begin working together to when the year is up. They become secure in their knowledge and what they are doing. For more on my mentorship program click here.