As we come to the final training days of the Spring Level 3 Matwork course, I thought it would be interesting to catch up with last year's JPilates Mat graduates! All of the instructors are now working in the Pilates industry either opening their own studios, teaching as freelance instructors in health clubs, other venues and training private clients.
Here is what they say about how their careers have developed:
Sarah Tandy- www.pilateswithsarahtandy.co.uk
Straight after completing my Matwork training with Jo I began working for a local Pilates teacher teaching three of her classes a week and covering any others where necessary. Since then, thanks to Jo's ongoing support and advice, I have begun to establish my own classes which are proving very popular and which I really enjoy. I have also attended two more of Jo's courses - Small Equipment and Pre and Post Natal, both of which have really enhanced my teaching. I really think that one of the best things about training with Jo is that she doesn't just teach you what is required to become a Pilates teacher but she also gives you the encouragement and self-confidence to teach and to teach in a way that is your own.
What will I be doing this time next year? That was a question I always wanted to know the answer to at the beginning of the Matwork course. I knew I had the love and passion for Pilates but could I actually do this? I am pleased to say that not only were my apprehensions calmed by Jo but she gave me the confidence to push myself onwards and succeed. Reassuringly, that amazing support does not end when the course does. Immediately after qualifying, I continued studying for my Masters Diploma and moved straight onto studying the studio equipment repertoire, followed by the Pre & Post Natal course. For me personally, I wanted an all-encompassing understanding of Pilates and I am pleased I kept the momentum going. While studying studio equipment, I decided to set up my first Matwork class. Although daunting, I was excited to start while my teaching levels were at their peak and take the plunge into the world of real classes. I continue to run and greatly enjoy teaching that class, as well as a class at a local school. Privately, I also hold weekly small group classes and one to one sessions. What a joy it is to be doing something I am really passionate about.
Warwick Monks- Freelance Instructor and Personal trainer
Since completing my Pilates Diploma I have become associated (thanks to Jo) with Yoga West.I do one class a week on Monday evenings with the possibility of doing private clients.I already have a successful training business which has enabled me to take Pilates to them. It is always am extra string to my bow, which is very well received.
Mary Fryer- Ardent Pilates
Having enjoyed practising Pilates for over 15 years I eventually found the right time in my life to embark upon teacher training. My first port of call was Jo and she inspired and motivated me from the moment we spoke! I decided to just go for it and booked onto the Masters Diploma. The training was fantastic and as a group of students we all got on brilliantly supporting each other as we went along. I already knew that I wanted to go it alone instead of teaching in studios or gyms and I managed to recruit clients almost immediately! 6 months on and they are all still with me, so I must be doing something right. Jo's approach to teaching was so refreshing. She has boundless energy and is always on hand to offer advice and guidance. I learnt so much through her tutoring, not only on the technical and anatomical level but also on the people skills required to be a great teacher. I am about to launch private reformer classes (thanks to a very generous client investing in me!) and can't believe how my life has turned around in such a short time. I fit nearly all my clients into a school day so that I can still be there for my kids so I couldn't have picked a better career. Taking things further I am doing the Pre and Post Natal qualification in the autumn and will of course be attending the convention, which will be fantastic to see the other JPilates "Elders" as we like to be known! Jo puts everything into the courses and workshops and I know I'll be continuing my professional development through her and the JPilates team. There is so much on offer that there is no need to go elsewhere!
Clare Marie Thomas- www.claremariepilates.com
I had been wanting to train as an instructor for many years, but I never made time for it what with working full-time and studying, but in 2011 I finallydid it and it has been the best decision I have ever made. It was such a great experience, working with a group of inspirational people and of course the amazing Joanne Cobbe, who supported us every step of the way, imparting her depth of knowledge and skills to help us become the best instructors we can be. Literally three days after I qualified I was offered a job as an instructor at a Pilates Studio and this has led onto more and more work. The transition from employed to self-employed has taken a little bit of time to get used to, going from working with an office full of people to going solo, but there is such a great network of instructors that you are never far from someone who can advise you and you can share your experiences with. And the continuing support from Jo after the course has been invaluable, enabling me to slowly build up my self-confidence as an instructor and support me when I needed advice on clients and classes. You are never left to go it alone! So five months later, I am now teaching every day and absolutely love my new flexible life style. I am constantly learning and have qualified in Reformer, Pre & Post Pregnancy with JPilates since completing my Level 3 Matwork Diploma. I have found that these additional qualifications have led to even more work and meeting new and interesting people every day. This year I shall be completing my Level 3 Exercise Referral and Level 4 Back Care qualifications to further enhance my knowledge as an instructor. I am also looking forward to seeing all my Pilates Study buddies at the JPilates Convention and sharing our stories!These days I LOVE MONDAYS! I feel like this was the best career move I have made and I am looking forward to the next forty years as a Pilates Instructor!
Georgia Gilz- Pilates Studio Owner & Instructor
Since completing the JPilates Masters course along with the Pre & Post Natal qualification,I can honestly say my life has changed in so many ways for the better. I came to JPilates with simply a passion for reformer and all the benefits I had experienced over the 2 years since I had been first introduced to it through my physio. I left the course with a true understanding and keen interest in anatomy and posture, a respect for mat work and a great passion with Pre & Post Natal Pilates. JPilates, through its great teaching, creative learning methods and constant support and encouragement gave me both the opportunity and the courage to set-up my business and facilitated my move abroad. Today I am the proud owner (along with my two business partners) of my own Pilates studio in the heart of Lebanon 'Posto Nove Studio'. We specialize in semi private training with particular emphasis on Reformer and Pre & Post Natal Pilates, both concepts relatively new here Lebanon. My time at JPilates has been truly invaluable and I will forever be grateful to Jo for creating such a great place for learning. I plan on continuing my learning with JPilates whenever I have the opportunity to be back in the UK.
Jo Fernandes- Freelance Instructor
I decided to take my Pilates Matwork Level 3 qualification last year with Jo as I wanted to update from being a Level 2 Fitness Pilates Instructor and gain more knowledge of pure Pilates and improve my teaching. I learnt so much on the course from Jo and am really glad that I updated. She is such a motivational and inspiring tutor and gave me so many ideas of how to add variety to my classes and to constantly challenge and progress my participants. I really feel that I have grown as an instructor and I feel much more confident correcting in class and am also a lot more hands on with my clients. They have all told me that they can see a big difference in my teaching and my classes since I did the course and I know that I have a much wider vocabulary now as well. Since qualifying, I set up my own Pilates class at a local tennis club which I run in 6 week blocks and I continue to teach my other Pilates classes that I was teaching before as "Fitness Pilates" but can now call Pilates. I am about to take on another 50+ Pilates class (I teach three for this age group already and I must say they are the most loyal members out of all of my classes!) and I feel much more confident and qualified to run my Pilates classes at the physio clinic where I get referrals from the physios. The postural analysis work we did on the course was just brilliant. I now teach 9 Pilates classes out of a total of 18 fitness classes a week so that's half my workload and I really enjoy them all.
It is fantastic that all the instructors are successfully working in the Pilates industry. One of the most fundamental aspects of JPilates training is the continual support and encouragement given not only during your training but also throughout your Pilates career
Once a JPilates student always JPilates student!
The next Level 3 Diploma in Teaching Mat Pilates begins in September for more information please click here