“First Educate the child”
Joseph Pilates was very straightforward in his vision to teach Contrology to youth.
“In childhood, habits are easily formed – good and bad. Why not then concentrate on the formation of only good habits and thus avoid the necessity later on in life of attempting to correct bad habits and substituting them for good habits”
Until recently Pilates classes were geared mostly towards adult population but the focus has started shifting in the last couple of years. More and more teachers recognize the need to teach Pilates to children but they are not prepared to do so. Most Pilates teacher training schools don’t prepare their graduates for work with this fun and yet very demanding group of students.
Is it time to change something?
Celeste Corey-Zopich and Brett Howard, both former members of the Pilates Method Alliance’s Pilates 4 Youth committee, have recognized the need to provide quality education resources for the Pilates teachers interested in bringing Pilates to children. Celeste and Brett participated with Dawn-Marie Ickes in co-authoring Pilates for Children and Adolescents: Manual of Guidelines and Curriculum. The book was published by the Pilates Method Alliance and released in 2014.
However the book (though an excellent resource for any Pilates teacher!) can’t answer all the questions of teaching and marketing Pilates to children. The next step was the creation of the Pilates Youth Organization – a training and educational resource.
What are some of the biggest questions of teaching Pilates to children? We’ll cover most of them in this interview and here is a quick glimpse at what we’ll be talking about:
- What is the best age to introduce Pilates to children and why?
- What are the goals of a Pilates workout for children?
- How can you instill discipline during a class?
- What exercise is most loved by children?
- What classical Pilates exercises do you recommend to avoid for children and why?
- When is the best time to introduce children to apparatus?
- What props do the children like the most?
- How to set up a successful pricing strategy for Pilates Youth classes?
- The best ways to market Pilates lessons to children and their parents.
- What kind of training and certification does the Pilates Youth Organization provide at this moment? What are the prerequisites and test-out requirements?