Why Pilates Classes Are So Expensive?

Is Pilates Expensive? Extensive training, costly equipment, and dedicated instructors ensure a lifetime fitness investment.

  • Author: Lesley Logan
  • January 20, 2024
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why is pilates so expensive thegem blog - Online Pilates Classes
why is pilates so expensive thegem blog - Online Pilates Classes

How Expensive Is Pilates?

Pilates Expensive

I remember when I first fell in love with Pilates I immediately purchased the unlimited class membership. While it was more money than my gym membership I did the math. I could go to one class for $25 or I could go to as many classes as I wanted for $116. And, I managed to get to those classes 3-5x a week! I felt like I was winning on the deal end.

But, what I couldn’t swallow was the cost of a Private Pilates session. Back then they were $75-$90/session. Now, most fully certified Pilates privates are between $80-$175/session. And, I know for many that can sound expensive. However, let’s take a look at the “why behind this wait what? Pilates is how much?!”

While I was going to Pilates like a mad woman and feeling fabulous after several months I could tell that while I knew the exercises I wasn’t getting stronger at many of them. The ones my body cheated on I still cheated on. And, while I could hear the teachers ideas, cues and corrections he or she didn’t have the time or ability to help me when I was one of 15, 20 or even 30!

How Much Are Pilates Classes?

I moved to LA and classes and memberships were even more expensive! And, the teachers of the classes I could afford were not as experienced as what I was used to. This landed me in a private studio doing a duet with another college girl and learning how much I simply didn’t know and couldn’t know in a class.

Fast forward to me becoming a teacher. I quickly learned why Pilates from a fully trained instructor called for the prices being charged. And, why, it’s often a steal. Figuring out what to charge was not the easiest thing I had to do when becoming a teacher.

1) Becoming a Pilates instructor does not happen over a weekend! Pilates instructors who are fully trained have gone through at least 450 hours of training sometimes 950 hours just for the foundation. The programs cost as much as some college tuitions.

2) Continuing education is even more expensive! Many teachers finish their basic training and then to dive deeper they take workshops or special training to gain more knowledge in teaching special populations of people, correcting better, cueing better, exercises not covered in their foundational training etc.

3) They take sessions too! Your Pilates instructor is also taking from their mentor each week. Why? Because to teach you better they too have to learn and feel Pilates in their body. And, Pilates isn’t an overnight fix. It’s a lifetime fitness commitment that continues to gift you rewards even ten, fifteen, thirty years later!

4) Pilates Equipment is expensive. The basic equipment to start a studio can set a teacher or owner back at least $10k and that’s before they get the towels, yoga blocks and weights.

5) Location, Location, Location! If you live in a city the prices are likely to be higher due to the cost of running a business in a city vs a more suburban or rural area.

6) Your Pilates instructor is more than a Pilates instructor! They are your accountability partner, your movement advocate, they think about your body before, during and after your session. They spend time planning your workout, scheduling and rescheduling your sessions and even listening to all that your mind shares. While they are not your therapist, physical therapist, best friend or life coach often your mind and body ask that of them. A Pilates instructor is a special person who will get training, do research and think about all the ways they can help you continue to do your Pilates and progress so when you walk out that door you feel like a million dollars!

Still wondering why Pilates is so expensive? In life, there are things worth saving and couponing. But, when it comes to your bodies health and longevity I highly recommend doing your research. Finding an instructor that is fully trained, has knowledge about your special needs and can help you hit and surpass your health goals. If you’re wanting to save a little green buy a package or supplement your private sessions with a class in person or online. This way you know you have one session dedicated to helping you learn how to move your body and classes to challenge what you learned in that session.

xx~LL

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By Lesley Logan

Lesley Logan, NCPT, is the founder of OnlinePilatesClasses.com, the first free online catalogue of Pilates exercise tutorial videos, where you can also find weekly online mat classes and workshops. When not teaching from her studio in Los Angeles, Lesley can be found traveling the world leading Pilates retreats, or offering Pilates business coaching to studio owners and other instructors through her private mastermind group. Connect with Lesley on instagram @lesley.logan or through the contact page on this site.

Disclaimer: Some of the links in this article are “affiliate links”, a link with a special tracking code. This means if you click on an affiliate link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. The price of the item is the same whether it is an affiliate link or not. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers. By using the affiliate links, you are helping support our Website, and we genuinely appreciate your support.

4 comments

  1. Hello! I always ask myself whay is Pilates so expensive – you can do all workouts at home if you want and you have a tons of online videos on Youtube. But, very important is that you do all workouts correctly and this can give you only pilates studios, instructors, etc. This is the reason (my opinion) why Pilates is so expensive!

    1. Hi Sina, totally hear ya. Yes the expertise of the instructor and the equipment do affect the price. And for good reason. There are also many ways to experience Pilates at different price points which is great so that more bodies can be introduced to Pilates.

  2. Hello! I always ask myself whay is Pilates so expensive – you can do all workouts at home if you want and you have a tons of online videos on Youtube. But, very important is that you do all workouts correctly and this can give you only pilates studios, instructors, etc. This is the reason (my opinion) why Pilates is so expensive!

    1. Hi Sina, totally hear ya. Yes the expertise of the instructor and the equipment do affect the price. And for good reason. There are also many ways to experience Pilates at different price points which is great so that more bodies can be introduced to Pilates.

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March flashcard sale | Online Pilates Classes

SUCH A TEASE

ONLINE MAT & REFORMER PILATES CLASS DESCRIPTIONS:

Teaser is probably one of the most photographed exercises in Pilates. Which makes people think it's a "peak pose." But, it's anything but! It's simply another layer to your Pilates practice. This week we will acknowledge how each exercise contributes to your ability to do Teaser (someday) and then how Teaser teaches you where to get curious in your practice.

On the Mat we will use light weights for one round of Teaser as they can be helpful for those still adding into their practice.
No props on the Reformer.

See you in class,

xx~LL

MAT EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, light weights and a Mat!

>> Wondering what mat I’m using? You can find out more here.

REFORMER EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self and a Reformer!

>> Wondering what reformer I’m using? You can find out more here.

UP, UP, & AWAY

ONLINE MAT, REFORMER, CADILLAC & WUNDA CHAIR PILATES CLASS DESCRIPTIONS:

We are all going to feel like Super Humans after this month!!

Whenever I’m in a hard exercise (for me) where I’m holding myself up with my arms and reaching my legs away I picture myself with super human strength!!! I can do ANYTHING! It makes me smile and helps me stay STRONG.

This month our exercise is Up Stretch and when you think about it - reaching your legs away and staying strong over the carriage may feel a lot like flying!

We’ll be focusing on stabilizing our strong cores while staying equally balanced in our arms and legs. We are giving you some amazing building blocks by merging strength and stretch in all directions. You are going to get a little bit of everything that you can use to connect to your Up Stretch (and even your Roll Up and Knee Stretches Off).

Chair: Please have a foam roller and a balance pad available. We are going to challenge your balance safely.

xx-LL

CRAB SPECIAL

Online Mat & Reformer Pilates Class Descriptions:

I've had a lot of questions about the Crab on the Mat and I think there are a lot of fears around it. I believe you can Crab sooner than you think! On the Mat, the focus is about the Crab which comes at the end of the order, so let see how everything we do is to prep for it. On the Reformer, there's so much we can strengthen and practice so that you can do the Crab. Let's make a Crab Special!

Mat - Magic Circle. If you don't have one, you can use a ball or theraband or an old pair of leggings

Reformer - no props needed

See ya in class,

xx~LL 💋

    MAT EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, Magic Circle (ball, theraband or old pair of leggings) and a mat!

    >> Wondering what mat I’m using? You can find out more here.

    REFORMER EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self and a reformer!

    >> Wondering what reformer I’m using? You can find out more here.

    EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE

    Online Mat & Reformer Pilates Class Descriptions:

    An OPC favorite theme is back! This week's class is prop free and all about focusing on your breath. Focus on when you're holding your breath so we can explore why. And as best you can inhale and exhale as you move so that the breath can help you rock, roll, reach and stretch!

    Joseph Pilates was BIG ON BREATHING! I won't make you pull out your breathisizer but I do want you to fill those lungs up!

    See ya in class,

    xx~LL 💋

    MAT EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, and a mat!

    >> Wondering what mat I’m using? You can find out more here.

    REFORMER EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, and a reformer!

    >> Wondering what reformer I’m using? You can find out more here.

    HIPPY KI-YAY, MAT & REFORMER

    Online Mat & Reformer Pilates Class Descriptions:

    To find the work, we’ll use a hip band and mix some reformer exercises into the mat workout and some mat exercises into the reformer workout. We’ll work on finding connections to our hips while loosening them up and making them stronger.

    Mat Props: hip band, light weights, and something to prop the hips up.
    Reformer Props: hip band and your typical reformer pieces

    See you in class,

    Rachel

      MAT EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, hip band, light weights and a mat!

      >> Wondering what mat I’m using? You can find out more here.

      REFORMER EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, hip band and a reformer!

      >> Wondering what reformer I’m using? You can find out more here.

      ANCHORS AWEIGH!

      Online Mat & Reformer Pilates Class Descriptions:

      Anchors Aweigh is often misspelled as Anchors Away! Did you know this? And did you know this - The expression anchors aweigh means all the anchors are clear of the sea bottom, and the ship begins its voyage. So, I actually thought I was being clever when I changed it to Anchors Aweigh because I want to use the 1 lb weights as a prop. Also, I want to use this theme to bring focus and clarity during each exercise about what's not moving vs. what is moving. And really keeping what’s not supposed to move as still and stable as can be. May be harder than you think to do, so let’s have fun with it! Think of it as a game.

      Mat prop: 1 lb weights (water bottles or soup cans as substitutions ) + pole (dowel/broomstick/swiffer as substitutions)
      Reformer prop: 1 lb weights (water bottles or soup cans as substitutions ) + pole (dowel/broomstick/swiffer as substitutions)

      See you in class,

      Christine

      MAT EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, 1 lb weights, pole and a mat!

      >> Wondering what mat I’m using? You can find out more here.

      REFORMER EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, 1 lb weights, pole and a reformer!

      >> Wondering what reformer I’m using? You can find out more here.

      WINTER WONDERLAND

      Online Mat, Reformer, Cadillac & Wunda Chair Pilates Class Descriptions:

      OPC Teacher Christine loves the snow! Snowy days make her happy. So during the winter season, her Pilates practice is more to support her snowy activities. Skiing, Ice Skating, Snowboarding and more! In class, we’ll work on some breathing, balance, lower body stamina, and upper body strength to carry all that gear!

      Cadillac/Tower = no props needed
      Wunda = no props needed
      Reformer = no props needed
      Mat = no props needed

      See ya in class,

      xx-LL 💋

      THE BIG 4-6

      ONLINE MAT, REFORMER, CADILLAC & WUNDA CHAIR PILATES CLASS DESCRIPTIONS:

      It's Mindi's BDAY month y'all and she is turning the Big 4 6!!! Oh yeah, which means that we are going to be doing either 4 reps of an exercise or 6!!! Alternating between the two means you get to explore what it feels like to have more reps or less reps to play with an exercise.

      Mat class - have your magic circle ready!

      See ya in class,

      xx-LL 💋

      Wish I was a Baller

      Online Mat & Reformer Pilates Class Descriptions:

      In this class we will use the small ball in a variety of ways to find more connection in each exercise. Finding your upper back, Thass and inner thighs to name a few. We have added a few variations and a little creativity to make this class fun and challenging. Hopefully in the end you will feel like a baller!

      Mindi

      MAT EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, small ball and a mat!

      >> Wondering what mat I’m using? You can find out more here.

      REFORMER EQUIPMENT NEEDED: Your awesome self, small ball, sitting box and a reformer!

      >> Wondering what reformer I’m using? You can find out more here.