Pilates has become the exercise of choice for a growing number of people worldwide. Sally Anderson, founder of Sydney’s Pilates International Training Centre (PilatesITC), has toured with the Cirque de Soleil and helped a variety of celebrities achieve amazing bodies.
We quizzed Sally about the benefits of Pilates, how to know if we’re being trained by a reputable practitioner and got the low-down on the PilatesITC online training courses now on offer.
RESCU: If you had to sum up Pilates in one tweet (140 characters) – what would you say?
Sally Anderson: In 10 sessions, you will feel the difference. In 20, you will see the difference. In 30, you’ll be on your way to having a whole new body.
RESCU: What are the benefits of Pilates for health and wellbeing?
Sally Anderson: The Pilates Method is unique in its crossover of holistic health and conditioning with the pragmatic, science-based methodology that is consistently referred to within the allied health industries for its unique corrective, preventative and rehabilitative benefits. Whole body strength, inside and out, is really important to develop many health factors in your life, from correcting postures, to stimulating internal organs for detoxification, digestion, disease prevention, and to reduce stress and anxiety.
RESCU: How will Pilates help us physically and how does it differ to yoga?
Sally Anderson: Both Pilates and Yoga are holistic exercise modalities. There are some crossovers in how they work and what they achieve, however they are quite different in many ways. The main differences include:
- Pilates is a science-based practice rather than a spiritual one that yoga intends to be
- Pilates uses both Matwork and an extraordinary range of specialised apparatus to help work the body – the apparatus are major pieces of equipment that both challenge and support the execution of the work
- Pilates uses constant, flowing movement to work the body in and out of full ranges of movement, rather than holding poses for any length of time.
Pilates and Yoga both use breathing as an integral part of their practice, however the breathing intent and execution can differ for purposes particular to each modality.
RESCU: How do the benefits of Pilates extend beyond the physical?
Sally Anderson: Pilates encourages a constant focus of the mind to the body during practice which creates a mind body connection and greater awareness and mental clarity. Along with working all the musculoskeletal system, the Pilates method will work deeply to stimulate the internal organs and thereby stimulation of chemical responses within the body; creates greater flow of blood, oxygen and lymph, thereby increasing toxin removal, oxygen uptake, and reduction of mental stress and anxiety.
RESCU: Can you tell us a little more about your online Pilates training course – is it really possible to learn something so physical remotely?
Sally Anderson: Pilates International Training Centre has launched its courses in May, to offer accredited Pilates education online so that people can train anywhere, anytime. Our government accredited Pilates training courses are now offered online in response to the constant enquiry we had from remote or regional participants who wanted access to training and developing their own business opportunities in the Pilates industry nationwide. Additionally, we have long been aware of the desire for students to have 24/7 access to visual repeat of the Pilates repertoire for their learning processes. We decided several years ago to put our courses online and have made sure that the materials are comprehensive and offer support and consistency to the learning experience. Given the extensive resources, including the whole repertoire in high-quality video footage, our online students have been achieving great results from the programs and are loving the access they have to the online resources. In addition to the online work, PilatesITC places students in a work experience and mentoring program with local studios that are affiliated with our network, or for more remote participants we flexibly arrange a work experience and mentoring program to support the practical application of the work. Students are required to complete 300 supervised work experience hours alongside their studies. This enables the hands on experience that turns theory into practice.
RESCU: How can we tell we are learning Pilates at a reputable and government-registered organisation?
Sally Anderson: The Pilates industry has developed rapidly over the past ten years, and it is now necessary to train with a government registered training organisation and achieve an accredited outcome, if you wish to be recognised in the Pilates industry. A registered training organisation will have a national code and will clearly state that they are registered under the Australian Quality Training Framework, along with displaying the national training logos.
Look for courses that have a national code listed beside their title, and note that the specialist industry entry level is a Diploma qualification, with Certificate IV offering a Matwork outcome, and the Advanced Diploma taking you to a post-graduate level training outcome as a Pilates Practitioner.
Pilates International Training Centre was the first Pilates training organization to achieve government registration (in May 2004), and has developed the highest level formal qualifications available in Pilates world-wide, setting the benchmark for Pilates vocational training and education.
Visit www.pilatesitc.edu.au for more information about Sally Anderson, the Pilates Method and the courses on offer.