Pilates School SF
Affordable | Personalized | Permanent Change
A Unique Pilates Studio
Welcome to an inclusive, equitable, BIPOC + LGBTQIA space!
Our driving mission is to ensure Classical Pilates is an attainable practice for all humans, not just for those that have the discretionary income to indulge on a luxury item. Access to knowledge and health should not be a right reserved for the privileged few. We’ve taken the elitism out of fitness by making Classical Pilates more affordable, body-positive, and diverse.
What Make Us Different
If you have ever felt like you didn’t belong at a studio, you belong here!
At the Pilates School SF we make a point of fostering a truly diverse community of every gender, shape, and background. One size does not fit all, here. We believe in tailoring the work to fit you.
The Pilates School is designed to operate more like an actual school than a big box gym. We offer core classes (oh yeah, pun intended) and elective classes. There will very likely be some homework, and an expectation that you will take ownership over aspects of your training. We will be there to guide you every step of the way, but you have to do the reading, so to speak. There are hundreds of exercises within the Classical Pilates repertoire. We have codifed this massive, complex body of work into a logical curriculum built around the science of physical movement.
Every month we focus on a different theme or aspect of the work, and every week we cycle through the Pilates equipment in order to apply those topics to the exercises. Every loop we run you through reiterates and builds upon the information from the previous loop. You will leave this program with deep understanding not only of your body and its unique needs, but perhaps more importantly, how to use Classical Pilates as a powerful tool to effectively train and heal *your* body.
Ready to Get Started?
Decide How You Want To Start
Choose between a slower, more in-depth Consultation process, or make the commitment to yourself right now with a Quick Start membership.
Pick Your Service
We offer a variety of monthly memberships and private session packages, all designed to meet your needs and work within your budget. Nothing here is “one size fits all”.
Start the Journey
Follow your personalized program and dive right in to a new level of strength! Don’t worry, we will be there to guide you every step of the way. We all travel along the Pilates path together!
Services and Programs
The core of our program and our most popular service. A monthly mix of group classes and private sessions.
Privates, Duets, & Trios
Everyone needs some Pilates “Me Time”. Try 1-on-1 to 3-on-1 sessions to refine and deepen your Pilates practice.
A BIPOC + LBGTQIA focused certification to empower under-represented groups in Pilates and fitness. (Our comprehensive program is on its way to being nationally accredited!)
Social Events & Workshops
Pilates School members love two things: Pilates, and food. We often combine the two at our social events. Workshops and System Reviews allow a deep dive into specific topics.
You Have a Right to High Quality Training
In these trying times affording quality fitness training is even harder than usual for some. In order to accommodate those dealing with financial hardship, we are hard at work on developing our Community Class Program, which will make our training more accessible to those in need. No matter where you are in the world, you will have access to high quality, detailed Classical Pilates classes and prerecorded workouts available to you.
Take a look at our co-founder Ray showing how much detail you can get from just an online class. This is just one of the many classes we will offer in the Community Class Program.
Our new program will launch in early 2023!
The Pilates School Book Series
Remember how we said that our program was set up more like a school than a gym? During your time in our program you will be guided by your instructors through a series of books and exericse booklets. These booklets give you a way to track your workouts, take notes, and are a great reference guide to all things Classical Pilates. Visit our store to view our complete book series and our recommended reading list.
Get Started Book - Your guide to the first 30 days in our program.
Pilates System Books - An in-depth breakdown of all the exercises of each level.
Recommended Reading: Pilates books everyone should read.
Frequently Asked Questions
I'm just looking for a drop-in reformer class...
We do not offer drop in classes. Our membership program is designed for someone ready to do the deep work required in authentic Classical Pilates. This means you are ready to commit to the learning process. For most people that means you are in the studio at least 1-2x a week for 12-18 months.
Do I need private session?
Put simply, every needs private sessions. They are the most effective way to learn Classical Pilates practice. Yes, they can be expensive, but for some it is the best route to long term health. We recommend private training if:
- You have a chronic illness or injury that can be exacerbated by exercise.
- You suffer from muscle or joint pain that affects daily activities.
- You are prenatal, pregnant, or postpartum.
- You prefer to learn in a 1-on-1 environment.
- You wish to see faster results.
If some of these statements resonate with you, consider starting our program with the New Client Consultation, and then Private Sessions.
I'm pretty fit. Can I take advanced classes?
A common misconception for new clients is that your level of Pilates proficiency is related to your fitness level. Regardless of your fitness level, someone that has never taken a Classical Pilates training before is considered a beginner. Moreover, new clients assume that Pre-Pilates/ Basic means “easy”, but we can assure you it is not! Basic means foundational, and a Basic level workout can leave even the most Advanced clients sweating.
Lastly, reaching an Advanced level is not necessarily the ultimate goal in Classical Pilates. The goal is for you to gain complete control over your body and how it moves through everyday life. Not every body needs to perform Advanced level stunts. There is a lot of difficult, quality work to be found in Pre-, Basic, and Intermediate Pilates. Most people stay in the intermediate system happily for many years, always digging deeper and finding something new and challenging to enjoy.
Don’t be afraid of starting at the very beginning. We promise it’s worth it.
What is "Classical" Pilates?
Oof, that’s a big question. But the simplest answer is that Classical Pilates has the following qualities:
(1) the instructor is Classical certified, meaning they have apprenticed under a master teacher training for 2-3 years.
(2) We focus on the original exercises which were designed for- and tend to be done on- Classical Pilates equipment. There is an optimal flow and order that the exercises should be performed in, and this routine is best expressed on Classical equipment. Joseph Pilates designed the exercise routine in a way that builds a solid understanding of the core concepts of Classical Pilates: Centering, Control, Concentration, Breathing, Precision, Rhythm and Flow.
(3) Classical Pilates follows a structured progression from on piece of equipment to the next, starting in Pre-Pilates and all the way through Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced. Some of the equipment has an “exercise order”, wherein the goal is to master the exericses in that specific order before attempting more challeneging exericses. Everythig builds on top of what you learned before it.
(4) Joe Pilates’ original goal was teaching his students to gain independence. We aim to do the same. We teach you to fish, instead of charging you every time you need to catch a fish. We train you to know your body’s needs, and how to utilize Pilates like the powerful tool it is.
Which membership should I pick?
First, get yourself a New Client Consultation package. Everyone starts there. It gives you a chance to try a little of everything we offer. Now, if you know you want to start this process, get yourself the Quick Start Package which includes a discounted Consultation Package and your first month of membership. Which membership? It depends on your preference and budget. GIMME ALL THE CLASSES is our class-focused membership with one Private Session each month. GIMME ALL THE THINGS is our hybrid membership with group classes and 3 Private Sessions every month.
Still unsure? Schedule a free tour of the studio or a chat with our studio manager Alysia. We will be happy to show you what we do!
This seem like a big commitment. Any short-term memberships?
Yeah, we know our program is a bit of a commitment. But our goal in designing it was to help you gain complete independence in your Pilates practice. So we would suggest that you start this process when your mind, body, and schedule are ready to fully commit to this work. Unfortunately there are no shortcuts to an authentic Classical Pilates practice.
Ready to Begin Your Pilates Journey with Us?