Pilates FAQs

How long is a Pilates session?

55 minutes. Please arrive early for your first session in order to fill out some paperwork.

What should I wear?

Wear something that you can easily move in, preferably without buttons or zippers. Form fitting clothing will help your instructor see your alignment, but above all wear something that you feel comfortable in.

Lululemon athletica offers great exercise clothes. 

What forms of payment do you accept? 

Cash, checks and credit cards (Visa/Mastercard/Discovery)

How does Pilates differ from yoga?

Pilates has its own repertoire of exercises that are different from yoga. While Pilates has a mat based sequence, it also uses a wide variety of equipment and helps to tone muscles using spring resistance. Pilates doesn’t hold positions, but rather encourages a constant flow of movement. Like anything, Pilates is as spiritual as you want to make it; however, while Pilates is considered a mind-body exercise that requires a great deal of concentration, classical Pilates doesn’t include a specific spiritual component, such as chanting or prayer.  Pilates will help with your yoga practice by teaching you to move safely from your abdominals to prevent, or help relieve, back pain. 

Will I lose weight?

Pilates strengthens the body and builds muscle, thereby increasing your metabolism. Pilates will change your body if you are consistent. Although a Pilates session will burn calories, it is not a cardiovascular workout. Therefore, if significant weight loss is your goal it is important to make sure to get your heart pumping with a separate workout (walking, running, dancing- anything that gets you moving and keeps you motivated). If weight loss is your goal, Pilates will help you achieve it. With a consistent Pilates practice, clients see a difference in the way their body looks and feels. 

How many times a week should I do Pilates?

Joseph Pilates said to do twenty minutes a day. If you are doing private lessons or taking classes, try to do 2-3 lessons per week. But if you can’t afford to do more than one lesson, don’t let it stop you from working with an instructor. One lesson per week will still be of great benefit to you, especially if you learn how to correctly execute a mat workout at home, so that you can add a 20+ minute Pilates mat workout at home in addition to one private or semi-private session done with a skilled instructor. Remember, Pilates is about quality, not quantity, of movement and if done properly will give you amazing results. 

How can I find a good instructor?

Make sure your instructor has completed a comprehensive training with a minimum of 450 hours and passed their exam. Learning how to be a Pilates instructor is not something you can accomplish in a weekend! A good instructor also takes part in continuing education in order to keep their skills and knowledge base current. 

Who can benefit?

So far, my youngest client is 13 and my oldest client is 85. Pilates can benefit everyone. With private sessions, Pilates can be tailored to fit your individual needs. Pilates is great for men and women. 

What if I have an injury?

It is important to remember that most Pilates instructors are not physical therapists, but that Pilates is a safe and effective workout that can be modified to fit a client’s individual needs and limitations. Make sure to tell your instructor about any injuries, medications, recent surgeries or if you are pregnant. I believe in the Power Pilates approach stating that “movement heals”.

Can I do Pilates while pregnant?

Pilates is a wonderful workout to do while you are pregnant, as long as you have already been doing it, as it is not advised to start a new exercise routine when pregnant. It helps keep you strong and balanced during your pregnancy, helps with labor and helps you “bounce back” afterwards.

One of my clients kept coming until about 3 weeks before she gave birth! As long as you have been given the okay by your doctor, then Pilates is a great workout for you to do for as long as you feel comfortable.

Your instuctor will make changes as your body changes. For example, eventually you’ll stop lying on your stomach or being on your back for extended periods. 

Do you recommend any Pilates Videos?

I recommend www.Pilatesology.com, a great classical Pilates website with new online videos added all the time. They offer a free ten day trial. Another great option is The Pilates Fix, a youtube channel with challenging workouts. I was even in one! Check it out here.

Two videos I recommend are “Romana’s Pilates for Weight Management” and “Stott Pilates Strong and Streamlined”. I like the Romana video because it is fast paced and they don’t stop to tell you what to do next. There is a section that goes through and explains what to do (you are supposed to watch it first), and then when you do the workout you are given voice over cues as a woman demonstrates the exercises. I like this because videos can often be boring once you know what you are doing, but this video keeps you moving. Just be careful with this one, as it can get a bit “frantic” at times, but it is a good workout! If any of the exercises hurt your back, bending your knees slightly can often help. Sometimes they they cue the legs very low for some exercises, so I would raise them higher (up to 90 degrees) or even soften the knees. The workout is about 20-25 minutes.

Stott Pilates is not a classical Pilates company but while most of their videos can be a bit slow I think Strong and Streamlined offers a good sequence, has a quicker tempo and it includes some of the more challenging mat exercises. To save time (this video is about 50 minutes) you can fast forward through the warm-up and start with the Hundred (because the Hundred is a warm-up!). This video is listed under their advanced section, but as long as you have some experience doing Pilates, you’ll be fine. Just listen to your body!! 




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Beverly Hills, California, 90211