Teacher Training Program - FAQs
What sets your teacher training program apart from other Pilates training programs?
There are many excellent Pilates teacher trainings. One key difference with our program is that the Balanced Body curriculum is led by master instructor Tom McCook and you are exposed to Center of Balance's talented team of instructors and rich learning environment. Additionally, Tom’s extensive background in leading teacher trainings and workshops around the world provides students with a deeper learning experience.
The Balanced Body program is modular and taught in progression to help you focus on the material of each course and build on concepts being taught. We offer the full curriculum (Mat, Reformer and Apparatus) over the course of approximately nine months so you can study, practice and apply your education in a methodical process.Check out our Teacher Training Programs
What are my requirements once I complete the courses in terms of hours of observation, practice teaching, and personal practice?
For full training, you have 2 options for completing your hours:
- 45 personal practice hours and 105 teaching hours or
- 35 personal sessions, 20 observation hours and 95 teaching hours
What is Practice Sangha and how do I sign up?
We offer a program to help you complete your hours at Center of Balance, called “Practice Sangha,” or Practice Community. It is a program specifically for Balanced Body students actively enrolled at Center of Balance in Reformer and/or full Apparatus. The cost is $100/month and includes observation of Pilates equipment, self-practice and practice teaching hours during select times at the studio.
Our goal is to help you develop the confidence and skills to teach by providing a rich learning environment that you can be immersed in, and not work in isolation. We want for you to feel that you have a base at Center of Balance to practice, observe and collaborate with others and learn from the talented teachers at the studio.
Depending on space, you can sign up for Practice Sangha directly with Center of Balance and may begin any time after REFORMER 1 is completed. You will need to carry your own liability insurance and have Center of Balance listed as “additionally insured” on your policy. We can help you with the process.
How long does it take to complete the full training and take the test-out exam?
How long it takes to complete the full teacher training is really up to you, your focus and your time commitment. Students who are motivated and willing to put in the necessary hours can often test out nine months to one year after completing their coursework. It really depends on how much time you have to dedicate to your training each week, and how ready you feel to take the exam. We recommend a minimum of 10 hours per week to get the most out of the training. This time is an opportunity to immerse yourself in the work, practice the repertoire, and develop a solid foundation for teaching.
If I were to go through the teacher training for only the Reformer, do you think it would be tough for me to find a job?
We suggest you check the requirements and employment guidelines of each studio or facility you are pursuing employment. Some places are only outfitted with Reformers, so you would not necessarily need full equipment training. Also, you should check how many years of experience they are seeking from their instructors. For established studios like Center of Balance, we require complete certification in Mat and all equipment — I think you may find this typical. You'll need to really check on the places you'd like to work and then ask them for their criteria.
I missed the mat teacher training dates you just offered but want to do my Pilates training with Center of Balance. What are my options at your studio or do I need to wait for the next round of courses?
While you missed MAT 1 & 2 at Center of Balance, you can visit Balanced Body's website to see other host studios that may be offering MAT 1 & 2. If you are interested in pursuing the equipment teacher training with us and can meet the pre-requisites, you can jump ahead and start with REFORMER 1. You can then catch up with your Mat training as it fits into your schedule.
I would like to get certified as a Pilates instructor. Since I am in college, can I use the weekend as my time for studying Pilates?
That’s great that you are interested in getting certified in Pilates. All modules are taught on the weekend, so this should fit well with your schedule. We are a teacher training studio for Balanced Body, and offer courses in Mat, Reformer and full Apparatus.
We also offer a program at Center of Balance called "Practice Sangha" which is a way to do your observation, self-practice and practice teaching hours at our studio. For $100 per month, you can do unlimited hours, based on the studio's schedule, Monday through Saturday. We have morning hours available on Saturday at Center of Balance, so you would be able to do Practice Sangha on Saturdays if that is the only day you can participate.
I am a Pilates instructor. I am Mat certified and have taken all the Reformer courses, but I have not tested out in Reformer. Can I take some classes to expand and enhance my skills at your studio in preparation for my test out?
We'd love to have you join us at the studio! We have several options for you, from drop-in mat classes to scheduled private and group sessions. We have many Pilates instructors from the Bay area who come to Center of Balance for continuing education, so you will be joining a knowledgeable community and rich learning environment.
May I observe classes before I take MAT 1 or MAT 2?
We do not offer observation for mat classes. Observation of equipment sessions is part of our Practice Sangha and is for students enrolled in Reformer or the full Pilates teacher training program. This is available for students after MAT 1 & 2 and REFORMER 1.
Taking private sessions, groups and mat classes will help you get the repertoire in your body and is the first step towards becoming a teacher. We also recommend getting the manuals and begin reading about the principles behind the method and exercises to further your understanding. At Center of Balance, your observation hours for the full certification are all compiled together. If you are considering the full program, you will keep track of all your hours of observation, self practice and practice teaching to fulfill the overall requirement to take the certification test out.
Do I pay the same rate to observe that I do to take a personal class?
Observation is part of a program we offer at Center of Balance called Practice Sangha. It includes pre-scheduled hours of observation, self practice and practice teaching. Practice Sangha costs $100 / month for select hours, based on the studio schedule. You can sign up for it after MAT 1 & 2 and REFORMER 1. Personal classes (mat class, privates and group sessions) are independent of this and have their own prices. We offer package rates as well as student discounts — check out our prices.
Can I start my training with REFORMER 1?
We recommend taking the Mat training prior to REFORMER 1. Some students start with REFORMER 1, but in our experience we don't think this is the best way to approach the training process. You will begin to learn the thread of information in the Mat training that is fundamental to all of the Pilates work.
I have a network of "students" and supporters in the area. What is the rate I pay to use the studio for my practice teaching?
That's great that you have a network of students who will be very helpful when you begin practice teaching. Practice teaching is included in your cost to participate in the Practice Sangha, which is $100 per month. To best support your learning, you may not charge the students you practice teach at Center of Balance.
I am interested in getting my Pilates certification. How far in advance should I sign up for the courses?
That's great that you are interested in becoming a mat teacher! Our program generally begins in September with MAT 1. We have been full with a waitlist a couple of times in the past, so I would suggest signing up at least one month in advance to secure your spot.
What books and materials will be required in addition to the registration fee?
What are the pre-requisites?
Here's a link to the pre-reqs:
My suggestion regarding the requirements is to start taking classes to feel first if this is a path you want to pursue, and also to begin practicing the exercises you will learn more deeply in the training. As with any training, the more you can commit to understanding the work, the more you will get out of it. Two weekend workshops for Mat are really just an introduction to becoming a teacher. The learning process will be much richer if you engage beyond the structured class time.
I see Anatomy is a suggested pre-requisite for the teacher training, and required to test out. Do you have suggestions where this class should be taken?
There are several options for you to receive your anatomy training — you can take a course at a local college, night school, or through Balanced Body and the Anatomy in 3D training, which is a weekend course. Anatomy in 3D is a fun, focused and practical way to learn anatomy. There are several of these courses happening around the country and you can look for upcoming schedules at www.Pilates.com.
We highly recommend checking in with Balanced Body before signing up for an anatomy course, to ensure that it will meet their requirements.