It is recommended that all clients take at least three private sessions before taking a class. Group classes are designed more for general fitness levels so those with limitations or specific goals may be better suited for private or semi-private sessions. In order to begin taking classes, the client should have a basic understanding of the following:
- Bony landmarks: sitz bones, sacrum, sternum, ribs, scapula, and pelvis
- Movement patterns and general terms used in cueing:
- lateral breathing and breath activation of the transverse abdominals in a lying down and seated position
- foot to leg alignment and activation of the inner and outer spiral in Pilates stance
- pelvic movement – neutral, anterior and superior tilt
- extension and flexion of the spine
- two directional stretches in all ranges of motion
- Familiarity with Level 1 exercise names and correct execution, such as the hundred, supine arms, hug a tree, pulling straps and elephant.
Levels also determine the intensity of the exercises and flow of the class. Below are typical moves incorporated into a leveled class. If a client has contraindications for these exercises (i.e. should not do forward flexion) or has limitations in range of motion (i.e. hamstrings, wrist, low back, or neck), they must have a clear understanding how to modify or have an alternative move that they can do. This is where private sessions are very valuable.
Level 1 – Understanding of above mentioned. Most moves will either be lying down, seated or standing with support.
Level 2 – Short spine massage, Shortbox Advanced Abdominals, Knee stretch (knees off), Single leg elephant and arabesque, Semi-circle, Full seated rowing series, Chest Expansion & Kneeling Arm Circles, Teaser without straps
Level 3 – Teaser (box), Long Spine Massage, Jackknife, Kneeling Thigh Stretch, Long Back Stretch, Control Front/Back, Tendon Stretch, Snake/Twist, Russian Splits (hands-off), Side Support, Magician, Tower