Yay, I'm Certified... Now What?

All those hours you have put in studying, observing, practicing, lesson planning, tests. It has finally paid off, you passed your final exam and are now certified, the world is your oyster. The options are endless in your mind, you can now conquer the world one client at a time. Helping people with pain management/relief, alignment, strength, defining agility and skill, weight loss and over all fitness, you got this. Then reality sets in. Where do you start, who gives you your first shot, do you need insurance, what if someone gets injured, what kind of studio do you want to work at, what kind of equipment do you want to work on, do you have a specialty, classes or privates? With so many directions to take your practice, your oyster is starting to shrink a little, maybe a little anxiety setting in and the nerves begin to take over.

There are so many training programs out there, all teaching towards the same goal, to help mold the best of the best in the Pilates instructor circle. There is no right or wrong method to follow, even though some may tell you differently, whether it be classical, contemporary, Stott, Windsor, clinical, Basi… the list goes on, but they are all a form of Pilates. The core competencies are all the same, some of the goals may vary and apparatuses are different, but regardless of which type you train in, if you are the best you can be, you will make a difference in your clients lives.

With some training programs, they have studios they partner with where you can start auditioning and working as soon as you graduate. With other programs, maybe out of state or country, once you get home, then what? Social media is key, almost all studios post and list their openings and auditions available, and once you find ones in your area, pursue them, study the studio (i.e. equipment, back story and instructors) and schedule a time to audition… it is literally that easy. Another option, tell the studios you practice in your amazing news, if they are not hiring, another studio they know of or work at may be. The Pilates circle is so tight knit and all about helping others, you always want to see others succeed and help where you can, it is truly beautiful.

Equipment – oh equipment – there are so many different ones out there. You have your Gratz (will always be my first love), Balanced Body, Stott, Peak and so many more. They are all different in their own manner between tension colors, spring count, material, height, weight, width, archival, new age. Some teachers will continue teaching on what equipment they were trained on, were others will expand their horizons and learn new equipment to become more versatile between studios. One piece of advice, always ask the equipment before going in for an audition, the last thing you need is that dear in the headlights look because you have no idea why there are only 4 springs with no colors, or not know what the yellow springs tension is.

The oyster is back to full size again and the fantasizing can now continue. With Pilates being so versatile the options are grand, the studios are plentiful and the endorphins are never ending, there is only really the ability to soar. Find/Keep a mentor, continue perfecting your practice and always be on the lookout for advanced trainings, training on other apparatuses and annual conferences to learn from some of the remaining Elders of Pilates. You got this, so go out, audition, land that studio and start changing lives.

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