Hi, I’m Liz and I warmly welcome you to Corelation Pilates, a private therapeutic Pilates studio offering personal Pilates training. Inspired by a clear understanding of your personal goals, your motivations, and any obstacles you face, Pilates can help you improve your strength, balance, flexibility, and vitality. It feels amazing and the results will speak for themselves. You’re gonna love it. Let’s get started!
New to Pilates? Here are some common questions that you may have (and others have had too). If your question remains unanswered, please get in touch.
Is Pilates similar to yoga?
There are some similarities between yoga and Pilates. Joseph Pilates studied both Eastern disciplines such as yoga and martial arts alongside Western fitness pursuits such as bodybuilding, gymnastics, and boxing. He also worked as a nurse/physiotherapist. No doubt he was influenced by each when creating the Pilates method.
Both yoga and Pilates are mind-body modalities combining breath and movement. Either will help you become more body-aware. Pilates movement tends to be dynamic whereas some forms of yoga emphasize static holding of poses. You may find yoga more relaxing, with mindfulness, stretching, and lengthening being key benefits. Pilates also focuses on stretching but with a targeted approach by first identifying which muscles are tight (locked short) and require stretching versus those that are already over-stretched (locked long) and can instead benefit from strengthening to increase joint integrity. Additionally, Pilates may place more focus on recruiting the core muscles in establishing proper patterns of movement.
You might approach either for different or the same reasons and enjoy them equally.
What is the difference between Pilates on the mat versus equipment?
Many Pilates exercises are performed on padded mats while standing, sitting, lying on your back, front, sides, or kneeling. “Matwork” is an essential part of Pilates, often used as the starting point for mastering the basic principles and building a strong Pilates foundation. For example, we might begin with mat exercises to help you discover your core and build endurance before moving on to more complicated choreography and sequences using equipment. However, don’t assume that matwork is easy. You are using the resistance of your own body, making it difficult to cheat. When done correctly, the smallest movements can challenge dormant muscles. Like with all things Pilates, matwork is adaptable – smaller equipment and props can be used to make the exercises easier or to add extra challenge. Another benefit of matwork is that it can be done anywhere. Once you feel confident with the exercises, you can continue to practice them at home.
Many mat-based Pilates exercises can be performed using specialized equipment such as the reformer, stability chair, ladder barrel, or cadillac. Having a good understanding of common Pilates movements is helpful when transitioning from mat to equipment and among the various equipment. There are also Pilates exercises that are unique to each type of equipment. If there’s one thing Pilates isn’t short of, it is quantity and variety of exercises. Like with matwork, equipment-based exercises can be done while lying down, sitting, kneeling, or standing. A key difference is that Pilates equipment includes spring-based tension to create resistance. The higher surface and the added support of springs and straps can make it easier to get into positions and enjoy a range of motion that you may otherwise be unable to do on your own. Since Pilates equipment allows tremendous flexibility in adding or reducing challenge, it is particularly effective for injury rehabilitation. A variety of attachments can also be used for sport-specific training or to reinforce everyday functional movements. Some exercises are performed on a moving surface, recruiting the core to stabilize the body against movement. Most clients prefer using the Pilates equipment, once they get over its appearance – it looks intimidating, but it is fun.
Combining both mat and equipment exercises makes for a well-rounded Pilates program.
How is STOTT Pilates different from other forms of Pilates?
STOTT Pilates is known for the thoroughness and quality of its instructor training and is considered to be the “Ivy League” of Pilates education. STOTT Pilates is often described as a “contemporary approach” to Pilates. This is because it enhances the original Pilates method pioneered by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s, incorporating modern principles of exercise science, fascial fitness, and spinal rehabilitation.
The STOTT Piates curriculum is developed in consultation with fitness, sports medicine, and physiotherapy professionals and is recognized by national fitness agencies such as the American Council on Exercise and canfitpro. The result is an extensive repertoire of exercises and exercise modifications suitable for a wide range of individuals and conditions. STOTT Pilates is a reputable, safe, and highly effective Pilates method.
What should I wear during Pilates?
Your clothing should be comfortable and non-restrictive, e.g., yoga or fitted track pants, shorts, t-shirts, tank tops, etc. It’s best to avoid oversize items that may get in your way or make it difficult for your instructor to view your form as you move. Shoes are removed while practicing Pilates and non-skid socks are ideal when using the equipment.
How often should I do Pilates?
Depending on your goals, you’ll benefit from practicing Pilates 1-3 times per week. On a weekly basis, progress is achievable, but slower. Twice a week is a healthy commitment if you are looking for steady progress while recovering from injury or surgery or if you are supplementing your Pilates practice with other activities, including practicing Pilates at home. If your aim is to improve your physical conditioning or athletic performance, three time a week (or more) is ideal.
I recommend twice a week to start but believe that you are the best judge. Let your body inform you… Pilates should be a treat, not a chore.
Can I do Pilates every day?
Pilates is safe to do daily. However, it’s best to vary the workouts and intensity, alternating muscle groups so as to avoid fatigue.
Canada’s primary exercise organization (canfitpro) recommends individuals aged 18 to 64 engage in muscle strengthening activities 3 days per week, flexibility training 4 days per week, and daily cardiovascular exercise. Pilates exercise includes both muscle strengthening and flexibility training, it can also include cardiovascular training.
Can Pilates help me to lose weight?
Weight loss results from fewer calories being consumed than expended. A healthy, reduced-calorie diet is essential to weight loss. Naturally, exercise is helpful for weight loss too. Pilates does have some cardiovascular impact – it will raise your heart rate and like most strength training, it will boost your metabolism, making your body more efficient at burning fat. However, if weight loss is your primary goal, there are better forms of exercise that you can pursue. You might still consider Pilates for it’s ability to build lean muscle, trim, tone, and reshape the body, supplementing it with additional aerobic activities. A comprehensive approach will be helpful.
How quickly will I see results?
Joseph Pilates (the founder of the Pilates method) is quoted as saying: “In 10 sessions, you’ll feel the difference, in 20 you’ll see the difference, and in 30 you’ll have a whole new body.” Although the rate of progress is unique to each individual, there is always a point where improvement is obvious. Suddenly you are looking taller, you are carrying yourself differently, the shape of your body is altered… it hasn’t happened instantly but there is that point when it is undeniable that change has occurred.
Is Pilates recommended while pregnant?
With some modifications, Pilates is considered safe and even beneficial during pregnancy. Whether a vaginal delivery or c-section, the weight of the growing fetus over an extended period of time puts pressure on the pelvic floor, weakening the muscles and in some cases leading to a loss of bladder control or in rare cases, prolapse. The rectus abdominis muscles are also stretched and it isn’t uncommon for the two sides of the abdominal wall to further separate during pregnancy, a condition called diastasis recti. Strengthening the pelvic floor and transverses abdominis (deep abdominal muscles supporting the spine and pelvis) may help to support the uterus, reduce aches and pains, prevent or reduce the impact of diastasis recti, and prepare for pushing during delivery.
However, it is my belief that pregnancy isn’t the time to introduce a new form of exercise. Unless you are already practicing Pilates, I advise that you wait until after your delivery – it will be just as helpful then. If your doctor recommends beginning Pilates while you are pregnant and you are already accustomed to exercising, it is imperative to work with an experienced Pilates instructor who is knowledgeable in modifying exercises (and avoiding those that are contraindicated) in accordance with the guidelines of the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada.
Is Pilates covered by my health insurance plan?
Most extended health insurance plans do not cover Pilates exercise. In some clinic settings, Pilates services are performed by a Pilates instructor working under the guidance of a physiotherapist. Although the Pilates instructor (often called a physiotherapy assistant) provides the service, it is billed as “physiotherapy”, enabling coverage. Unless there is significant collaboration between therapist and assistant/Pilates instructor, it presents an ethical loophole. Seeking a physiotherapists who is also trained in Pilates may be your best option for legitimately covering Pilates under your health insurance plan and/or including Pilates as a tax deductible medical expense when filing your taxes.
What can I expect during my first Corelation Pilates session?
Prior to your appointment, we’ll discuss your objectives. During your first session you will learn essential principles that will make your Pilates practice safe and effective. Your posture will be assessed to provide a baseline or starting point of where your body is today. We’ll examine your body as you move, looking for muscular imbalances and compensatory patterns. This helps determine specific areas to target during future sessions. If you choose to continue, I’ll create a customized program tailored to your objectives. Each session will include exercises designed to meet your goals.
Are packages interchangeable?
Each package is intended as a suggestion for how we might focus your sessions. Ultimately, the time is yours and we can use it as you wish. For example, you may be injury-free and interested in fine-tuning exercises specific to your sport. We can do that.
- The Retain Package is available to clients who have already purchased and completed a Corelation Package and are interested in maintaining their progress with occasional ongoing assistance.
- You have a choice of location, either at your home or at my private studio. At-home pricing is calculated at a rate of 1.5x the equivalent studio rate; this is to allow for additional travel time both before and after your appointment. If you are interested in Pilates training, both in your home and at my private studio, please let me know in advance and I will do my best to accommodate your request with customized price/package options.
What are my options after completing a package?
On completion of a package, your options are to purchase the same package again, purchase a different package, or receive guidance on how to continue practicing on your own. For example, the Retain Package includes online personal coaching to support your continued progress. There’s no pressure to continue, it is purely your decision and I’ll support you either way.