Which Pilates certification is best for you?

We created this essential quiz to help you choose the perfect certification for YOU based on your goals, learning style, and more.

If you are intrigued by mind-body wellness, body balancing, and biomechanics, then you would make an outstanding Pilates instructor!

In this article, you will learn the following on the best pilates instructor certifications:

  • What is Pilates
  • Becoming pilates certified
  • Top Pilates certifications
  • Course content, study materials, required books
  • Exams and pricing

When you are finished reading this article, you will be ready to choose the best pilates instructor certification for your career goals.

Let’s dive in!

We highly recommend that you take our helpful quiz to find the best Pilates certification for you.

Our Top Pick for Best Pilates Certification

ISSA Pilates Certification

  • Self-paced study
  • Dedicated success coach
  • Open-book final exam

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a type of balanced body fitness system developed in the early 20th century by Joseph Pilates in Germany.

The Pilates method is practiced nationwide, especially in Western countries such as Australia, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom.

As a matter of fact, Joseph Pilates taught contemporary pilates for many years in New York, and all throughout the USA.

Pilates exercises were developed as a form of physical therapy, to alleviate poor health.

In fact, Joseph Pilates accompanied his method with specific, varied pilates equipment.

The pilates equipment was primarily used to help enhance the benefits pilates offers, such as stretching, strengthening, and improved body alignment.

Also, mat exercises helped to increase overall core strength.

Becoming Pilates Certified

So how exactly does one become a Pilates teacher?

Similar to personal trainers obtaining personal trainer certifications, you’ll need to attend a pilates teacher training, or enroll in a pilates certification program accredited by the Pilates Method Alliance (PMA).

Founded in 2001, the PMA is a non-profit professional organization dedicated to the advancement and promotion of Pilates.

Moreover, the National Pilates Certification Program (NPCP) is a special certification program within the PMA, developed to offer third-party pilates teacher certifications.

This program is National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA) accredited.

Generally, you may obtain a basic mat Pilates certification after about 40–50 hours of training.

For both mat pilates and apparatus (pilates equipment) training, you will need between 200 and 500 hours of coursework, observation, and practice teaching.

You have the option to choose from in-person and online pilates certifications.

Just like a personal trainer or a group exercise instructor, there are specifically pilates fitness instructor certification courses.

Also, note that there are many different pilates certifications.

But, let’s exclusively tap into places that offer the best pilates certifications.

  • Peak Pilates
  • Bodyline Pilates Studio
  • Balanced Body Pilates
  • Stott Pilates
  • Pop Pilates
  • Firehaus Pilates/Polestar Pilates Education
  • Pearl Pilates
  • Blue Sparrow Pilates

These are all comprehensive pilates training programs, which means you will receive only high-quality pilates education.

Having a nationally recognized Pilates certification is best for your personal and professional growth.

Upon completion of your pilates teacher training program, you will no doubt have what it takes to teach pilates.

You may want to look into having your own liability insurance as well.

Also, to remain certified, stay on top of your continuing education courses (CECs) and the places you may obtain them.

Consider a good personal trainer certification and nutrition certification alongside your Pilates cert as well, because it will allow you to have more diverse job opportunities. Pilates, in the fitness world, is a specialty certification, which means you are highly skilled in one area, but often, if you work as a trainer or nutritionist as well, it’ll mean a much higher overall income.

Pilates Certifications Breakdown

ISSA Pilates Certification

The ISSA Pilates Instructor Certification stands out as the best pilates instructor certification in the fitness industry.

ISSA Pilates Instructor Course Breakdown

  • Deep Dive into Anatomy & Physiology: The certification curriculum delves deep into human anatomy and physiology. As a student, you’ll grasp how these elements intertwine with exercise, health, and wellness.
  • Foundation in Exercise Principles: ISSA ensures that its students understand the foundational principles of exercise, fitness, and health. Moreover, you’ll master the art of tailoring Pilates sessions and full-fledged workout routines based on these principles.
  • Adaptability for Different Fitness Levels: Every individual is unique, with different fitness levels. This certification prepares you to assist clients across the spectrum, from novices to seasoned exercisers.
  • Promotion of Safety & Welfare: Whether your clients are working out at home, in a gym, or under the open sky, the course emphasizes ensuring their safety and well-being.
  • Mastery Over Pilates Movements: From the core Pilates exercises to more intricate movements, the course covers it all.
  • Tailored Training Sessions: Learn to customize Pilates sessions in line with your client’s specific requirements, aspirations, and potential movement restrictions.
  • Dynamic Workout Modifications: The course equips you to tweak your client’s Pilates regimen, amplifying or toning down the intensity as per their circumstances and desired outcomes.

ISSA Course Materials & Support

  • Online Course Textbook: ISSA’s primary course text is a one-stop solution for those aiming to be Mat Pilates Instructors. With continuous updates, you’re guaranteed access to the latest knowledge in the domain.
  • Online Study Guide & Workbook: This digital guide offers a structured walkthrough of the course, enhancing comprehension of mat pilates theories.
  • Regular Quizzes: From the second to the ninth week, each concludes with a mandatory quiz. These quizzes, which can be attempted multiple times, are invaluable for gauging your grasp of the material.
  • Certification Examination: The final hurdle in your certification journey is the ISSA exam. Designed to ascertain your competency, you’ll need to secure at least an 80% to pass.
  • Unwavering Educational Assistance: ISSA’s commitment doesn’t end with the exam. All students enjoy limitless educational support, with experienced professors ready to resolve any queries.
  • Online Community Forum: A platform where you can share challenges and garner insights from ISSA’s Master Trainers and a global community of peers.
  • Post-Certification Support: After your successful certification, ISSA continues to offer additional support, ensuring your journey in the fitness world is smooth.

ISSA Pilates Instructor Cost

The pricing for the ISSA Certified Pilates Instructor starts at about $650, depending on any current promotional deals.

Overall, the ISSA Pilates Instructor Certification is a holistic program, meticulously designed for those passionate about Pilates and helping others achieve their fitness goals.

Peak Pilates

Inspired by Joseph Pilates’s original principles, Peak Pilates flourished in Boulder, Colorado nearly 25 years ago.

There are three distinct types of certifications offered by the Peak Pilates instructor training program:

  • Comprehensive Certifications
  • Mat Certifications and Mat Work
  • Bridge Certifications

Moreover, there are three levels of Comprehensive Certifications.

Level 1 includes four modules.

In this comprehensive classical Pilates certification, you will learn basic human anatomy and kinesiology and complete 20 hours of Pilates training.

Coursework also recommends current CPR/AED and First Aid certifications.

In Module 1, you will learn the foundation of pilates and Pilates principles.

You cover power pilates as well as review the Peak Pilates 5-Part Formula.

This lesson predominately emphasizes mat work and core mat.

Module 2 introduces you to modalities, pilates equipment, and equipment training, as well as cueing and touching techniques.
Module 3 teaches at a more advanced level and includes apparatuses such as a chair, reformers, and ladder barrels.

The focus is on anatomy movement and proper, balanced body alignment.

Also, you will learn how to teach pilates sessions.

Lastly, Module 4 covers being a certified pilates teacher and conducting assessments.

Students who learn teach and practice pilates techniques and review various exercises and modalities.

You will definitely need to practice teaching to become pilates instructor certified.

Once successfully finished logging a total of 120 hours, students are awarded the Peak Pilates Level 1 Certification.
Let’s move to Level 2.

The prerequisites for the Level 2 Peak Pilates Certification are as follows:

  • Successful completion of Level I
  • 100 logged hours
  • Current, valid CPR/AED and First Aid certifications

There are two modules, which may also be taken at your own pace.

Module 1 includes pilates mat work, reformer pilates, and Cadillac.

More intermediate-level exercises, transitions, and ways to monitor for proper body alignment are highlighted here.

Module 2 of this instructor training introduces intermediate-level chair and barrel lessons.

Students will learn to teach pilates classes, mat classes, and assessments.

You also learn progressions and have the opportunity to self-practice and partake in student teaching.
Did you pass your pilates certification exam and log your 60 hours of training?

If so, congratulations.

You will now be awarded your Peak Pilates Level II Certification.

Level 3 consists of three modules.

Your only prerequisites and certification requirements include successful completion of Levels I and II Peak Pilates instructor training certifications and valid CPR/AED and First Aid certifications.

Module 1 covers advanced level mat, reformer, and Cadillac.

You will learn advanced-level exercises and transitions, as well as techniques.

Module 2 covers advanced-level pilates equipment and equipment training, such as using the reformer machine.

Additionally, students in this pilates certification course will review case studies that mirror those of a classical Pilates program.

Lastly, Module 3 is a one-day comprehensive final certification exam, which includes both written and practical assessments.

The Peak Pilates Full Comprehensive Certification is then awarded to pilates instructors who pass all the Level III certification requirements and log 60 hours.

Typically, this program will last one weekend per module.

As long as a total of 400 hours and 9 modules have been logged and completed, you will become a comprehensive pilates instructor.

And the cost of becoming a Pilates instructor?

This pilates teacher training program costs $5,619.

However, each module is paid for separately.

Here it is below:

  • Level 1 Modules 1, 2, and 3 cost $685.00 each
  • Level 1 Module 4 costs $599.00
  • Level 1 overall total comes to $2654.00
  • Level 2 Modules 1 and 2 are also $685.00 each, which is $1370.00 in total
  • Level 3 Modules 1 and 2 cost $685.00 each
  • Level 3 Module 3 costs $225.00, leaving a total of $1595.00 for Level 3

Bodyline Pilates Studio

Seeking a power pilates certification?

Look no further, as this comprehensive pilates certification program will provide you with the right tools to succeed as a power pilates instructor.

Courses offered at Bodyline Pilates Studio include Core Pilates Mat 1, Core Pilates Mat 2, Dual Mat, and Comprehensive Pilates Certifications.

In the Core Mat 1 program, you will learn the fundamentals of the power pilates method.

It takes one weekend to learn beginner-level mat exercises and familiarize yourself with the power pilates class structure and teaching skills.

The Core Mat 2 program emphasizes 12 intermediate-level exercises and sequencing.

You will have the opportunity to hone your teaching skills, too.

What if you want to do both?

With the Dual Mat program, you get the Core Mat 1 and Core Mat 2 courses at a discounted price of $200.00.

Basically, you will cover the basics of pilates and both beginner as well as intermediate level pilates movements.

This program allows you to enhance your teaching skills and knowledge of the power pilates method.

And lastly, the most extensive program, which covers beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels – is the Comprehensive Pilates Certification.

You will learn how to use advanced-level Pilates apparatus, work with clients in special populations, and provide modifications when necessary.

Pricing for this program is generally fair, and there are generous “early bird” discounts.

As there are many different types of training programs, bridge programs, specialties, and graduate training, which all affect the amount you pay.

Balanced Body Pilates

Balanced Body Pilates offers comprehensive pilates courses and has been dedicated to teacher training pilates instructors in over 50 countries.

You should know that this pilates teacher training offers four distinct pilates comprehensive certifications:

  • Pilates Mat Certifications
  • Reformer Pilates Certifications
  • Reformer Cadillac Pilates Certifications

First, let’s discuss the mat pilates certification.

In this certification pilates, instructors learn the basics and principles of mat work.

Prerequisites for this pilates mat instructor course include the following:

  • A minimum of 10 mat pilates classes
  • Has worked in a similar field, such as group fitness, personal training, yoga instructor, pilates coach, mat specialist
  • Experience with group classes strongly preferred
  • Highly recommended to complete an anatomy course

Overall, Mats 1-3all last 16 hours.

You will be required to complete 20 personal mat sessions, 15 hours of observation, and 35 practice student teaching hours.

If you add this all together, the total length of the Balanced Body Pilates certification is 134 hours.

And, every two years, you are required to fulfill your continuing education credits.

Did you know that Balanced Body also offers barre pilates certifications?

The barre pilates certification is called Balanced Body Barre.

In just 8 hours, you will learn the fundamentals of barre.

A prerequisite to this program is experience teaching group classes.

Many of the movements found in pilates classes are heavily emphasized in barre classes and focus primarily on the lower limbs and improving overall strength and muscle imbalance.

Also, Balanced Body Barre offers a comprehensive barre pilates certification, which is 16 hours.

This comprehensive certification program definitely buffers up any pilates instructor or personal training certification.

The focus is on functional fitness training and provides instructors with the essentials and core values they will need to teach 30 – 60 minute classes. 

You will learn how to teach the music, cue clients, and correct clients to ensure professionalism as an instructor.

Balanced Body Barre offers barre pilates certifications midwest as well as online.

Pilates certifications online have become increasingly popular and can definitely be much more convenient.

In the 16-hour comprehensive barre pilates certification, you will learn the following:

  • The fundamentals of barre
  • Barre exercises
  • Structure of classes
  • Movement principles and the Balanced Body Programming System.
  • Cueing to music
  • Teaching for proper alignment
  • Having and keeping the passion to teach for exciting, successful classes

To become a certified Balanced Body Barre Instructor, you must complete either the fundamentals or comprehensive coursework, practice teaching for at least 6 months, and pass your certification exam.

No worries, you got this.

On a final note, you may actually qualify for getting scholarships for pilates certifications, barre pilates certifications, and even pilates yoga certifications.

Already certified in pilates but not in yoga?

Want a separate yoga certification to accommodate personal trainer credits?

I highly recommend the ISSA Yoga Instructor certification.

In fact, the ISSA Nutritionist certification may pair well with your pilates and/or yoga certification especially if you want to become a nutrition coach.

Stott Pilates

Stott Pilates is a popular full-time day course teaching pilates to instructors all over.

This comprehensive program includes the following two modules:

  • Comprehensive Mat Work and Reformer Pilates
  • Comprehensive Cadillac, Chairs, and Ladder Barrels

The Comprehensive Mat Work and Reformer Pilates program generally takes 3 to 4 months to complete.

This is also followed by a certified Pilates apprenticeship.

Lastly, this program costs $2,890.00 in total, when you combine the prices of both modules.

On the other hand, the Comprehensive Cadillac, Chairs, and Ladder Barrels program takes around 2 months to complete, and will also require a certified Pilates apprenticeship.

See the source image

Prerequisites for this program include experience in the field, teaching group fitness, and/or dance classes.

You must also have completed 30 logged hours of Pilates classes.

The total cost of the Comprehensive Cadillac, Chairs and Ladder Barrels program is $1,520.00.

Please keep in mind that coursework and required books must be purchased separately, as they are not included in the total price for each program.

Stott Pilates certified instructors must complete both modules to become pilates instructor certified.

Pop Pilates

Looking for fun ways to improve strength with flexibility?

Pop Pilates does just this.

Think of it as more than just your typical whole-body fitness routine, but as comprehensive mat work that will have you swearing you’ve danced.

Its focus is predominantly on high-energy movements, muscle toning, and enhancing confidence.

To be considered for this program, you must fulfill the prerequisites.

First, you will need to be at least 18 years of age.

For pilates certifications online, you will have 12 weeks to complete your training and submit your evaluation video, which must be submitted in English.

But just because you complete your training and submit your video does not guarantee certification.

To receive a full refund, the coursework cancellation policy is 48 hours after your purchase.

Finally, upon certification, a Pop Pilates Membership of $12.99 USD per month or $120 USD per year is required to maintain your POP Pilates trademark for classes.

In the Pop Pilates instructor training course, you will learn the following:

  • Out-of-this-world methodology and choreography
  • Body awareness
  • S.H.I.N.E. and P.O.P. cueing techniques
  • Proper alignment and form

Note this comprehensive program does provide continuing education credits for the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), and the American Council on Exercise (ACE) personal trainer credentials.

And if you truly want to make money as a personal trainer, then earning a related credential is the key.

Which reminds me.

Most people ask me, “do you have to be certified to be a personal trainer?

Uhm, yes!

If you aren’t yet a certified personal trainer and consider becoming one, then I highly recommend reading through the following study materials to set you up for a good start:

Want to compare certifications?

That’s made easy with the NASM vs. ACE article.

Before I move forward, I should mention to you that the International Sports Sciences Association (ISSA) is another great personal training certification, and is in fact my favorite one.

You can also compare NASM vs. ISSA just to see what’s what.

But enough talk about that.

Let’s circle back to the Pop Pilates training.

How much does modern pilates training cost?

Overall, the total cost of this training comes to $299.00.

Not bad.

It is also self-paced and may be done from anywhere.

Once you register for your training, you will receive 14 Comprehensive Training Videos.

There are 40 Technical Breakdown Videos, other required books, live class options, and FAQs with a Master Trainer.

You will learn Pop Pilates choreography, choice of music, and class notes.

Becoming a Pop Pilates instructor is simple, and all you will need to do is register for the pilates certification online or live in person.

Then, you will complete your training and submit your final evaluation video.

The minute you are Pop Pilates instructor certified, you will have a monthly membership, with access to a myriad of resources and support throughout your career.

Polestar Pilates Education

You will have an opportunity here like no other to advance your career as a certified pilates instructor through this comprehensive program.

Polestar Pilates Education is a highly reputable fitness and rehabilitation certification program existing for over 25 years and is led by a Doctor of Physical Therapy.

Polestar is a nationally recognized Pilates certification, teaching pilates in 40 countries, and is available in 12 languages.

Additionally, the Polestar Pilates education coursework mainly focuses on detailed, proper movement and posture assessment, critical thinking, and communication skills.

Polestar-certified instructors are those who seek to heal through movement.

See the source image

Let’s shift our attention to the Comprehensive Pilates for Studio and Rehabilitation program.

This would be ideal for pilates instructors who want to work with this specific niche.

Other sports medicine professionals who would benefit from this program include physical therapists, osteopaths, massage therapists, chiropractors, personal trainers, and even strength and conditioning coaches.

A strength and conditioning coach works primarily with athletes but may implement pilates knowledge and learned skills into their already existing knowledge and practice.

Exercise adaptation, muscle balance, and muscle flexibility are essential, especially for athletes, and they will be blessing you a whole lot for going above and beyond to help them perform their best.

Interested in becoming a strength and conditioning coach and aren’t yet certified as one?

I’ve found the CSCS study guide and CSCS practice test to be extremely helpful in learning more about the certification and preparing to become a strength and conditioning coach.

Anyway, let me backtrack to the Polestar Pilates program, which will teach you the Polestar Principles of Movement, assessment techniques, sequencing, and cueing.

You may take this certification course online, or in a studio near you.

Located in Colorado?

Firehaus Pilates studio now offers Polestar Pilates Education, which makes it one of the best pilates certifications in Denver CO.

Following completion of the Polestar Comprehensive program, you will be eligible to register for and take the PMA Certification Exam.

This final exam consists of an online prerequisite course in the Principles of Fitness and Rehabilitation followed by six, two-day-course modules.

Pricing for this comprehensive program is listed below:

  • Principles of Movement; online course: $249.00
  • Early Bird Tuition (90 days prior to starting the 1st module): $4,800.00
  • Standard Tuition: $5,600.00
  • Final Exam Fee: $600.00

Overall, this program is expensive, but it provides great quality.

The second pilates certification program offered with Polestar is The Polestar Transition Course, also known as The Transition (Bridging) Intensive.

Are you already a Pilates instructor who aims to improve teaching and analytical assessment skills?

Do you also crave that refreshment of knowledge on the Pilates repertoire and the Polestar Principles of Movement?

If you answered “yes” to both of those questions, then this program is definitely for you.

You will need to successfully complete the prerequisite course in the Principles of Fitness and Rehabilitation, and a six-session course as well.

The cost of the Bridge Intensive is as follows:

  • Principles of Movement; online course: $249.00
  • Tuition: $3,800.00
  • Final Exam Fee: $600.00

Pearl Pilates

Pearl Pilates is one of the top leading pilates certifications Portland Oregon has to offer.

The pilates teacher training is run by Jeanni Chrisman, an authorized teacher trainer for the Pearl Pilates Studio Certification course created by Momentum Studios.

She conducts several courses per year at Pearl Pilates Studio, which are only offered in June.

Momentum is a nationally recognized Pilates certification facility with hundreds of trainees in 30 states and foreign countries including Canada, Australia, England, and Germany.

It is also recognized by the Pilates Method Alliance as a Comprehensive Pilates Education Facility.

In this course at Peral Pilates Studio, you will learn how to design, teach, cue, and modify beginner, intermediate, and advanced level pilates classes.

You will also integrate the use of modalities and pilates equipment in order to meet your client’s specific needs.

Additionally, students in this comprehensive program learn the following:

  • Definition of Pilates
  • The 6 Principles of Joseph Pilates
  • The 34 Fundamentals of Pilates Exercises
  • Mat work and apparatus pilates
  • Assessment
  • Program design
  • Proper exercise sequencing, modifications, and variations
  • Group class structure
  • Special populations
  • Making corrections and faulty movements

Certifications offered are Mat Pilates, Reformer Pilates, and Full Studio Pilates.

You can learn about each specific program, but let’s note some basic things to keep in mind.

The Mat Pilates certification course is divided into two training intensives.

There is a total of 5 full day-courses, in which you will learn all about mat work and mat exercises.

You will cover beginner, intermediate, and advanced level exercises, modifications, and variations.

Props and equipment are reviewed as well, as they may fit specific clients’ needs.

This course may count toward continuing education course credits even in other disciplines.

For the Mat Pilates certification, there are only a few prerequisites.

First, you will need to demonstrate a basic understanding of anatomy and some working knowledge of mat work.

Kindly note that there are many resources and books for self-study.

Course materials for the Mat Pilates certification include a training manual, and the following other resources:

  • A Pilates Primer: The Millennium Edition (Return to Life & Your Health)
  • Anatomy of Movement (Blandine Calais-Germain)
  • Recommended: Pilates Mat (not Yoga mat); fitball, foam roller, Theraband, magic circle

Keep in mind that courses do offer materials at a trainee discount.

The total length of this program is 30 hours.

In order to obtain your CECs, you must attend all 5 days, 6 hours each day.

To become pilates instructor certified, an additional 90 hours of apprenticeship are required.

The entire cost of the Mat Pilates certification program is $1,200.00.

Study materials are not included.

The final exam fee is $250.00 and is scheduled individually by students whenever they feel ready to take it.

Before taking your exam, you must successfully complete all apprenticeship hours.

For recertification purposes, you are required to obtain 10 continuing education hours every two years.

The recertification fee is $25.00.

Next, you have the Mat Work and Reformer Certification program, which consists of two, full three-day intensive courses, or 36 hours.

You cover movement across all levels and learn the classical work of Joseph Pilates.

This program is best for pilates instructors looking to teach a variety of clients from gym and studio settings to rehabilitative and therapeutic ones alike.

Prerequisites for this program are proficiency in Pilates and anatomy, and a minimum of 25 classes or private pilates classes by a certified Pilates instructor.

Required books and course materials include the following:

  • A Pilates Primer: The Millennium Edition (Return to Life & Your Health)
  • Anatomy of Movement (Blandine Calais-Germain)
  • Anatomy of Movement: Exercises (Blandine Calais-Germain)
  • A Busy Person’s Guide to Easier Movement (Frank Wildman)

Note that this program also provides continuing education credits.

Apprenticeship requirements must be fulfilled as well.

The total cost of the Mat Work and Reformer Certification program is $2,400.00.

The cost of the certification exam is $250.00.

You will have two years to fulfill your 16 hours of continuing education credits in order to maintain your certification.

Lastly, you have the opportunity to obtain the Pilates Full Studio Certification.

This is a 4 three-day intensive for a total of 12 days and 72 hours of teacher training.

All levels are covered on pilates equipment, or apparatus, as well as the Fundamentals of pilates and mat work.

The first two intensives are dedicated to the Fundamentals of pilates, Mat work, and Reformer.

The third Intensive emphasizes Cadillac pilates.

And the last Intensive covers Ladder Barrels and Chair.

You will learn classical pilates education as well.

The prerequisites for this program are proficiency in Level III Pilates, anatomy, and at least 25 classes or private classes by a certified Pilates instructor.

Below are the course materials and required books you will need:

  • A Pilates Primer: The Millennium Edition (Return to Life & Your Health)
  • Anatomy of Movement (Blandine Calais-Germain)
  • Anatomy of Movement: Exercises (Blandine Calais-Germain)
  • A Busy Person’s Guide to Easier Movement (Frank Wildman)

Apprenticeship requirements consist of 450 hours plus your 72 hours.

The cost for the Pilates Full Studio Certification is broken down here.

  • $2,400.00 for Matwork Reformer
  • $750.00 for Cadillac
  • $750.00 for Ladder Barrels and Chair

The certification exam fee is $250.00.

Blue Sparrow Pilates

The absolute cream of crop pilates certification in San Francisco is Blue Sparrow Pilates.

The Blue Sparrow Pilates teacher training is designed to accommodate flexible scheduling and may be taken and completed at your own pace.

You have many options for teacher training as well.

New to the Pilates World?

Then you would definitely benefit most from the Intensive Pilates Education courses.

You will learn intensive mat work, intensive reformer, intensive Cadillac, intensive stability chair, and intensive barrel.

Looking for a more advanced level of Pilates education?

If you have already completed those 5 intensive courses described above, then you must be ready to advance your Pilates career.

This program covers exactly the same content as the intensives, but at a much more advanced level.

Did you know Blue Sparrow Pilates also provides continuing education courses?

Examples of such courses include Fascial Movement Training, Total Barre, and numerous CEC workshops.

Exam fees for both Levels I and II certification exams are $300.00.

Best Pilates Certifications Roundup

Pilates Certification ProgramsPrerequisitesLevelsCertificationCompletion RequirementsTotal Cost of ProgramStudy Options
Peak Pilates1. 18 years old
2. CPR/AED and First Aid certified
3. High school diploma or equivalent
31. Comprehensive
2. Mat
3. Bridge
400 hours and 9 modules$5,619.00Online and in-person
Bodyline Pilates Studio1. 18 years old
2. CPR/AED and First Aid certified
3. Prerequisites for each certification vary
51. Balanced Body Movement Principles
2. Balanced Body Mat
3. Balanced Body Reformer
4. Balanced Body Comprehensive Pilates
16 hours for ALL certification programs; 11-12 months$500 to $650 per module, not counting $65 to $85 per course materialOnline and in-person
Balanced Body Pilates1. A minimum of 10 mat pilates classes
2. Has worked in a similar field
3. Experience with group classes strongly preferred
4. Complete an anatomy course
5. Prerequisites for each certification vary
31. Mat
2. Mat and Reformer
3. Reformer
4. Comprehensive
1. Mat: 134 hours
2. Mat and Reformer: 332 hours
3. Reformer: 214 hours
4. Comprehensive: 520 hours (not including anatomy)
VariesOnline and in-person
Stott Pilates1. 18 years old
2. CPR/AED and First Aid certified
3. Experience teaching group fitness, and/or dance classes
4. Prerequisites for each certification vary
31. Comprehensive Mat Work and Reformer Pilates
2. Comprehensive Cadillac, Chairs, and Ladder Barrels
1. Comprehensive Mat Work and Reformer Pilates: 310 hours
2. Comprehensive Cadillac, Chairs, and Ladder Barrels: 165 hours
1. $2,890.00
2. $1,520.00
Online and in-person
Pop Pilates1. 18 years oldAllComprehensive12 weeks$299.00 for program; $120.00/year for membership once certifiedOnline and in-person
Firehaus Pilates/Polestar Pilates Education1. 18 years old
2. CPR/AED and First Aid certified
2. Comprehensive: Principles of Fitness and Rehabilitation course and six, two-day-course modules
3. Bridge: Principles of Fitness and Rehabilitation and a six-session course
All1. Comprehensive
2. Bridge
Approximately 450 hours1. Principles of Movement: $249.00
2. Comprehensive Early Bird Tuition: $4,800.00
3. Comprehensive Tuition: $5,600.00
4. Bridge Tuition: $3,800.00
5. Final Exam: $600.00
Online and in-person
Pearl Pilates1. 18 years old
2. CPR/AED and First Aid certified
3. Prerequisites for each certification vary
51. Mat
2. Mat Work and Reformer
3. Full Studio
1. Mat: 16 contact hours, 120 apprenticeship hours
2: Mat Work and Reformer: 36 contact hours, 300 apprenticeship hours
3. Full Studio: 72 contact hours, 450 apprenticeship hours
1. Mat: $1,200.00
2. Mat Work and Reformer: $2,400.00
3. Full Studio: $3,900.00
4. Final Exam: $250.00
5. Recertification: $25.00
Online and in-person
Blue Sparrow Pilates1. 18 years old
2. CPR/AED and First Aid certified
3. Prerequisites for each certification vary
21. Intensive Mat Work
2. Intensive Reformer
3. Intensive Cadillac
4. Intensive Stability Chair
5. Intensive Barrel

1. Advanced Mat Work
2. Advanced Reformer
3. Advanced Cadillac
4. Advanced Stability Chair
5. Advanced Barrel
VariesExam: $300.00

By Program:
1. Intensive Mat Work: $1215 (Early), $1515 (Late)

2. Intensive Reformer: $1740 (Early), $1940 (Late)

3. Intensive Cadillac: $945 (Early), $1045 (Late)

4. Intensive Stability Chair: $575 (Early), $625 (Late)

5. Intensive Barrel: $395 (Early), $445 (Late)

1. Advanced Mat Work: $235 (Early), $285 (Late)

2. Advanced Reformer: $710 (Early), $760 (Late)

3. Advanced Cadillac: $235 (Early), $285 (Late)

4. Advanced Stability Chair: $185 (Early), $225 (Late)

5. Advanced Barrel: $185 (Early), $225 (Late)
Online and in-person


What is the best pilates certification?

The truth about pilates certifications is that the best is the one that best suits your needs and goals. Since it can be tricky navigating the myriads of accredited pilates certification programs, I recommend you do some research to decide which is best for you.

What is the Stott Pilates method?

The Stott Pilates Method highlights contemporary pilates and the original fundamentals created by Joseph Pilates. This safe and effective method includes exercise science and spinal rehabilitation in a more detailed manner. It is often used for rehabilitation clients, prenatal clients, athletes, celebrities, and everyone else.

How do you get certified in pilates?

To become pilates certified, you will need to attend pilates teacher training, or enroll in a pilates certification program accredited by the Pilates Method Alliance (PMA).

How long does it take to get certified in pilates?

Generally, you may obtain a basic mat Pilates certification after about 40–50 hours of training. For both mat pilates and apparatus (pilates equipment) training, you will need between 200 and 500 hours of coursework, observation, and practice teaching. Program length often varies.

Is it worth it to become a pilates instructor?

If becoming a pilates instructor certified and teaching pilates classes is definitely a career path that you want to pursue, just do it. Your investment in training and any necessary equipment will be with every penny.

Can I teach pilates without certification?

There is no law that prevents individuals to instruct Pilates classes without a pilates certification. But having a pilates certification ensures extensive knowledge and professionalism, and will attract more clientele.

How much can you earn as a pilates instructor?

Pay for pilates instructors depends on location, level of experience, background, and full-time versus part-time status. Most pilates instructors can expect to earn anywhere from $29.00 to $45.00 per class.

Are pilates instructors in demand?

All areas of fitness and health are in demand, as people realize that investing in their health and wellness is important.

Can you teach pilates from home?

With the increasing popularity of technology, instructing online pilates classes or pilates private and semi-private sessions is definitely possible.

What makes a good pilates teacher?

There are numerous things that constitute a good pilates teacher. These are education and years of experience, background knowledge, the willingness to learn different styles, and passion for what they do.


Without a doubt, the first step in pursuing a career as a pilates instructor would be to realize that you have the passion to help clients achieve their fitness, wellness, and weight loss goals.

Then, you’ll need to assess your background, skills, and education.

Be open to learning different styles of Pilates, and any other information which may help you succeed as a Pilates instructor.

In order to become a certified pilates teacher, you will need to attend pilates teacher training accredited by the Pilates Method Alliance.

There are many different types of pilates certifications and methods, so it is important to know which certification you are seeking.

This will definitely help you decide which certification is the best one for you.

Are pilates certifications all the same?

Absolutely not.

There are certifications in Mat Pilates, Reformer Pilates, Comprehensive Mat Work & Reformer Pilates, Classical Pilates, Contemporary Pilates, Power Pilates, and even more.

The comprehensive pilates certification programs listed and described in full detail above are all among the best places to get pilates certifications.

Pricing for each certification program, prerequisites, coursework, required books, and certification requirements are all covered as well.

But overall, may the best pilates certification be the one that best suits your needs and goals.


  1. Kloubec J. Pilates: how does it work and who needs it? Muscles, ligaments and tendons journal. 2011;1(2):61-66. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3666467/
  2. ‌Meikis L, Wicker P, Donath L. Effects of Pilates Training on Physiological and Psychological Health Parameters in Healthy Older Adults and in Older Adults With Clinical Conditions Over 55 Years: A Meta-Analytical Review. Frontiers in Neurology. 2021;12. doi: https://doi.org/10.3389/fneur.2021.724218
  3. ‌Roh SY. An exploration of implications for the development of Pilates instructor system through identification of instructors’ difficulties. Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation. 2016;12(4):355-362. doi: https://doi.org/10.12965/jer.1632664.332

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