. Classical Pilates. Traditional Pilates. These terms refer to the Pilates Method as it was taught by Joseph Pilates. The United States Pilates Association™
(U.S.P.A™) is one of the foremost groups working to preserve the teachings of Joseph Pilates in their original form. In January of '09, I spoke with Catherine Cuzzone, who runs the U.S.P.A., along with co principals/directors, Brett Howard, and David Freeman. From that talk and subsequent emails, I put together this brief profile of the U.S.P.A.™.
The United States Pilates Association is dedicated to preserving the integrity of the original teachings of Joseph Pilates
. They hope to do this through Pilates instructor training, continuing education, and as responsible owners of the archives of Joseph Pilates work in writing and on film.
Pilates Instructor Training through U.S.P.A.:
The U.S.P.A.'s Authentic PilatesTM
teacher certification program is based on their ownership of the Joseph Pilates Archives and his copyrighted Teacher Training Manual. Authentic PilatesTM
trainees learn a very distinct formula of teaching that encompasses exercise order, language, cues, and student progression.
Teacher training is through the New York Pilates Studio Teacher Training Program. This one-year comprehensive program is structured in 3 phases -- an academic phase, an apprentice phase, and a supervised solo teaching phase. The program is 600 hours and costs $4,000.
The Joseph Pilates Archives:
The U.S.P.A. archives include film, photos, original equipment designs and Joseph Pilates' original writings like his original teacher training manual. These media show "hundreds of exercises many of which have not been seen, or explored by the Pilates community"(U.S.P.A. website)
Access to these archives has been limited to people in the Authentic PilatesTM community. However, the U.S.P.A is looking at ways to make the material available to other instructors. A concern for the U.S.P.A. is that the integrity of Pilates not be diluted through over exposure and more contemporary interpretations of Joseph Pilates work.
Membership and Benefits:
Currently, membership is only available to the 1,000+ graduates of the U.S.P.A. teacher training program, though U.S.P.A. is looking at ways to extend membership to a broader group of certified Pilates instructors. Membership benefits include being listed with the U.S.P.A., continuing education opportunities, as well as insurance and educational discounts.