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Balancing Pilates with your Commitments

Amanda and her family

Amanda and her family

I am one of the many, many Pilates Instructors who teach because I love the Method, not because it earns me a living.  To do that, I have a full-time job.  In addition, I have two children under the age of two.  Because teaching Pilates is such a personal choice, not often looked at as a “job,” Pilates Instructors must constantly search for ways to better balance their many commitments.

Here are some tips that I, and other teachers I know who wear multiple hats, have found to work:

  1. Organization: Whether you have a paper planner or you use an electronic system, you MUST know where you are supposed to be and when, and with whom. I use an iPhone and have all of my classes and private lessons on my calendar so I don’t miss anything.  I also put important work meetings or other appointments on the same calendar so that if I need to adjust my schedule I already know when I have other commitments.
  2. Flexibility: (And I don’t mean in my joints.)  My family, my various bosses, and I all need to be incredibly flexible.  In order for me to teach, some days my husband leaves work early to pick our daughter up from daycare; and sometimes I have to adjust my day job schedule to accommodate clients.
  3. Understanding: Understanding from family and co-workers is almost as important as flexibility.  In addition to her job as a Physical Education teacher at a private school, Brenda Schumacher, runs InsideOut Pilates and Fitness Studio from her home.  “My kids and husband come first so I ask them to help me set the appointment availability for clients. We set out the number that we want to have on the books and we stick to that number and time slots. But even though I love both jobs it does get tiring juggling and changing gears from a job to clients. To stay motivated and intrigued, I read textbooks on the body as well as Pilates’ books—this also helps me to grow and that seems to keep the passion alive.”
  4. “Me” Time: As a mother, this is one of the most difficult challenges. Because I have two jobs, time for me is often the easiest thing to cross off when my schedule becomes too full.  However, it is essential for my sanity, my teaching and my work as an employee and a mother.  I usually try to exercise for 30-45 minutes in the morning and then for 30-40 minutes during my lunch hour.  This gets my day going and gives me energy, and it also gets me away from my desk during the day without the expense (financial and nutritional) of eating out.  I also treat myself to at least one nap every weekend.

It is a lot like having your cake and eating it too. I enjoy my office work and I also enjoy teaching Pilates.  These tools have helped me balance two demanding jobs while enabling me to have a personal life too.

By · Posted on October 6, 2009 · Topic Business, Instructional

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One Response to “Balancing Pilates with your Commitments”

  1. Anastasiya on October 6th, 2009 4:25 pm

    All these tips are invaluable. I am a Pilates instructor too but currently I do not teach (unfortunately :-( ) because we are planning to move to a different state pretty soon. However, Pilates is still my passion and in order to stay in shape I exercise at home every day. This is my personal commitment and I have to balance it with others tasks and responsibilities in my life like job (I am happy to be able to work from home), taking care of my kids (twins under 2) and other regular responsibilities (house, dinner, groceries etc.)

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