Recreation Management - Ideas and Solutions for Recreation, Sports & Fitness Facility Managers

Feature Story

April 2018


Club Pilates Grows With New Training Facility

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By Dave Ramont

Early in the 20th century, Joseph Pilates, from Germany, developed a system of exercises that were intended to strengthen the human mind and body, as he believed that mental and physical health were interrelated. When he founded his studio in New York City, some of his first clients were ballet dancers looking to control their movements and improve their posture. Today, Pilates is practiced worldwide, and continues to gain popularity, especially in western countries such as the United States, United Kingdom and Canada.

Club Pilates, founded in 2007 and based in Costa Mesa, Calif., is the nation's largest Pilates franchise. In 2017, Club Pilates opened a minimum of 20 studios each month, closing out the year with the signing of its 663rd franchise. And now, to expand proprietary training efforts for East Coast instructors, they've unveiled a state-of-the-art training facility in Atlanta.

The new 3,500-square-foot multipurpose training studio features 18 Pilates Reformers and capacity for 20 students in the classroom. It provides a centralized hub for East Coast staff to participate in monthly bridge training where instructors learn the Club Pilates method, general manager trainings, master trainer summits and teacher training in-studio sessions. This will be part of Club Pilates' mission to offer the highest quality experience to members by providing instructors, management and sales staff with further support and high-quality education.

Sarah Luna, senior vice president of operations at Club Pilates, said the new training facility is a reflection of how they're striving to exceed industry standards. "Our instructors are the heart of our brand. By providing the support and resources that our instructors need for success, we were able to deliver an exceptional Pilates experience that our members know and expect. Additionally, our studio general managers take on the responsibility of managing the local business and require training from sales to operations to marketing so that they can build a community in and around the vibrant studio."

Club Pilates has also recently re-launched its teacher training program, which is the only 500-hour comprehensive Pilates educational platform that also includes specialty certifications in group fitness such as TRX, Barre and Trigger Point. And they've further developed the program by implementing CANVAS, a college-accredited online learning platform where students can watch the lecture portions prior to attending the first of the in-studio, applied learning sessions. Participants can enroll online and complete the necessary hours of education by visiting a local Club Pilates studio.

Students of the teacher training program are also offered a direct career path through the apprenticeship program. Once a student reaches the halfway point of their teacher training program, they can apply to lead class under the mentorship of a master trainer. Graduates are encouraged to apply for instructor positions at Club Pilates locations.

The Club Pilates brand anticipates hiring 1,600 more instructors this year, many of whom will be trained at the new Atlanta facility, in addition to the 2,000 instructors currently employed nationwide.


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