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International Pilates Certification
Competency Doctrine

IPCertification documentation requires Pilates Instructors to teach within their skill.
The following recommendations are guidance for Pilates Instruction.

  1. A certified Pilates instructor can make an accurate ‘Fitness Assessment’ of the Pilates client (i.e. strength, flexibility endurance and body fat composition) and is competent designing fitness programs (i.e. considering the client’s goals, intuition, feedback, ‘Health History Questionnaire’, posture analysis and fitness assessment and if provided, their physician's evaluation or prescribed protocols) and is skilled in ‘Fitness Record’ documentation.

  2. A certified Pilates instructor MUST hold the client’s SAFTEY as her/his core responsibility. Therefore she/he is required to obtain CPR certification and professional fitness instructor liability insurance as well as perform safety inspections of fitness equipment and subsequently request maintenance of it when deemed necessary, for the well-being of the client.

  3. A certified Pilates instructor teaches how to perform movements safely and effectively, therefore she/he must be proficient in critical analysis of any exercise with the Pilates principles (i.e. Pilates is unique in the fitness industry due to application of the 5 Pilates principles; 1. Breath, 2. Oppositions, 3. Successive Contractions (originated by Francois Delsarte-1811-1871) and 4. Reciprocal Enervation (implemented by Physical Therapists), 5. Articular Traction (employed by the medical industry and exercise physiology) and is obligated to modify or dismiss any Pilates exercise when evaluated to be contraindicative to the clients' needs and abilities.
    NOTE; all modifications are based on the client's current needs and abilities, subsequently, we do not adhere to PRE-SCRIPTED routines (i.e. set spring loads, number of repetitions, breathing directives, pelvic/spinal alignment, sequence, pace or teaching style).

  4. A certified Pilates instructor is knowledgeable in the five stretch techniques.
    NOTE; The IPC flexibility policy is; we do not stretch clients, but rather, instruct the client in 4 of the five stretch modalities. Our objective is to teach the client to obtain or maintain a normal ROM. We never use the BALLISTIC stretch technique or force clients into an extreme or uncomfortable ROM (as in Joseph Pilates videos). Pilates Instructors may facilitate flexibility exercises by assisting stabilization within a normal ROM as the client releases excess tension in a STATIC STRETCH or performs PROPRIOCEPTVE NEUROMUSCULAR FACILITATION stretch techniques. We prefer instructing the client in DYNAMIC STRETCHING and ACTIVE ISOLATED STRETCHES for functional efficiency.

  5. A certified Pilates instructor is skilled in contemporary ‘Teaching Techniques (i.e. Demonstration, Touch System, Verbal Cueing, Graduate System, Technical Training, KISS System, Inspirational Teaching) and ‘Learning Modalities’ (i.e. Categorization, Code, Rhyme, Chant, Mnemonics, Acronyms, Reconstruction, Crossdics, Chunking, Visualization, Color-coding, Loci Method, Concept Image, RCRC).

  6. A certified Pilates instructor should be able to recognize (NOT diagnose) conditions or symptoms that a client exhibits that warrants immediate cancellation of the Pilates session and referral to a health professional.
    NOTE; symptoms such as, (but not limited to) chronic pain that does not respond to Pilates exercises, prolonged or increasing pain, inflammation, unusual chest pain, rapid heart rate, difficulty in breathing, numbness, distal bilateral tingling, intoxication, blurred vision, fainting, nausea, prolonged dizziness, a significant decrease in their normal coordination or mobility, loss of consciousness.

  7. A certified Pilates instructor always request clearance from a medical professional prior to working with a client under present or recent medical care and always follows medical guidelines, contraindications and general suggestions of the client’s health care provider.
    NOTE; Pilates exercises may exasperate fresh injuries permanently if the client returns to Pilates before the medical professional has discharged the client.

  8. A certified Pilates instructor will NOT breach her/his scope of practice by practicing physical rehabilitation, adjust a subluxation, correct illness, deformity or advise as a pharmacist, physician, chiropractor, physical therapist or dietitian.
    NOTE; A Pilates instructor may employ post-rehab protocols or offer her/his unqualified opinions but our principal consideration is to focus on maintaining the client’s wellness, it is the attending physician's responsibility to evaluate, monitor and prescribe protocols for the client's physical changes.

  9. A certified Pilates instructor concentrates on balancing the ratio between strength, endurance and flexibility and will not instruct a client to perform exercises past normal levels, even at the client's request.
    NOTE; intense strength training a muscle causes an imbalance with it’s antagonist muscles which may lead to injury, excessive endurance training may lead to joint compression or joint disorders such as degenerative disc, bursitis or arthritis, flexibility beyond a normal ROM may lead to permanently over stretched tendons or ligaments which predisposes the client to severe injuries (i.e. we avoid hyper-flexion as well as hyper-extension including the spine, knee, elbow and wrist).

  10. Continue education is required for a certified Pilates instructor.
    NOTE; A Pilates instructor must complete a CPR/first AID course.

CODE of CONDUCT

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