PNWP Spotlight: Road to Becoming a Pilates Pro

PNWP Students clear certification hurdles and acquire deep experience to become certified STOTT PILATES® instructors. Here’s what it takes to become an excellent instructor:


Pacific NW Pilates is, first and foremost, a Pilates studio. It’s also a school. Each year, PNWP Education accepts 15-20 students into its intensive training program (220 hours class time) to become STOTT PILATES® instructors. The entry point is a 20-hour functional anatomy course followed by a 40-hour mat course.

Students go deeper with level-one  specialty equipment courses on the Pilates Reformer, and Cadillac, Chair and Barrels. Finishing courses include level-two  mat and equipment curriculums, and concentrated focus on injuries and special conditions.

The path to becoming a fully certified STOTT PILATES Instructor is challenging and rewarding. Each student is interviewed and accepted based on their prior experience with movement or fitness. A student must posses a desire to understand Pilates at a deep and exhaustive level. Over the last 23 years, PNWP Education has graduated more than 300 students at various teaching levels and qualifications.

Not every participant completes the training or crosses the finish line to becoming a full-fledged Pilates instructor.



Many applicants decide to become a teacher after experiencing Pilates. They love it. It made their life better. They want to share their experience with others. They open themselves to change and new possibilities.

The time is right. The kids are out of the house. Their job isn’t satisfying. They’re ready for a new career. They want to learn about Pilates in a more in-depth way. They are accepted into an intensive and well-respected program—like ours.



The next step is to register for courses and arrange life to meet the demands of in-class hours (usually on the weekends) and homework. Every hour of class time requires another two hours of personal time to absorb the material. Students must complete assignments, observe classes, do physical review and practice teach.

They are required to understand the fundamentals of anatomy as it applies to movement and bio-mechanics. Anatomy provides a common language to describing movement, and a structure for examining favorable and faulty muscular recruitment patterns.

Students need to learn hundreds of exercises, modifications and variations. They learn to feel exercises in their own body, examine how others execute movement, and develop a keen capacity to communicate through words, touch and imagery.



It’s hard to be a beginner, but it’s exciting too! There is lots of material to learn, and it may feel like discovering a new language.

Becoming an expert at anything takes dedication and the discipline to practice. After a student completes course hours, choreography and teaching concepts need time to marinate. Students need a safe environment to make mistakes and receive feedback.


PNWP Support and Guidance

Home to 25 certified Pilates teachers and specialty Pilates equipment, PNWP studio is a place for community and learning. Every week we host more than 30 small group Pilates classes and 150 private lessons. PNWP Education students are invited to observe expert instructors in the studio. Students are also given complimentary access to studio equipment. Students form study groups and teams to practice teaching.



Most importantly, a Pilates teacher needs to be passionate about their teaching and have a desire to learn more. Passing the exam is just the beginning. Exceptional teachers combine their skills, intuition, knowledge and experience to work with a wide range of individuals.

Accomplished Pilates professionals add to their knowledge base each year and refine their skills through continuing education and personal training.

Learning doesn’t happen in a vacuum. PNWP is a powerful resource for any new or seasoned Pilates professional. Are you ready for a change, either with an expert instructor or yen to become one? Call now. Come in.

Pacific NW Pilates is studio, school and fitness family under one roof. Click to learn more about our education courses and workshops, private studio sessions and group classes. Or call for details: (503) 292-4409.