As we head toward Mother’s Day, we thought it to be a great opportunity to look back at our Peak Pilates® founding mothers! Julie Lobdell, the original owner of Peak Pilates® had the desire to create an education that was as good as the premiere brand of Pilates apparatus she was building…and she wanted it to be classical. In 1999, she started exploring ideas of how to make this happen, and finally, she brought together Colleen Glenn, Clare Dunpy and Zoey Trap to help her realize the dream.

From the beginning this group of women was driven by a desire to take the guesswork out of teaching, to de-mystify classical Pilates, and give the secrets away. In this endeavor they created comprehensive manuals (many programs then had no support materials), videos, and detailed lesson plans to build a consistent, high-quality approach.

This group of four recognized the need in the industry for modular, bite-sized programs that allowed an instructor to grow at his/her own pace and ability to allocate resources. This was truly revolutionary at the time and created an accessible pathway to classical certification.

Understanding that the Master Instructors who would deliver the program would be the front line and indeed build the brand, a lot of attention was given to training MI’s. After application, acceptance and preparation, all MI Candidates attended MI Camp where they were prepared to lead every aspect of a course, including honing high-level teaching skills, developing strong presentation skills, and learning to work with feedback and coaching. MI’s were required to audit and then co-teach every level before being approved to lead a solo course.

Over the years, a lot of growth has occurred. The original program, Peak Pilates® Systems (PPS) included mat, reformer, and tower with separate courses on chairs and barrels. This was later revised to be an integrated approach with all apparatus taught at each level. Five years ago, another revision was undertaken, and today the program is supported with robust online materials that include PowerPoint presentations, video and audio libraries, study guides, and quizzes. Indeed Peak Pilates® is still committed to being the gold standard in instructor education!

Today we have teachers on every continent except Antarctica, but rumor has it a penguin has applied for our Bridge Course. Unfortunately, even for elegantly tuxedoed individuals we have criteria that we continue to uphold.

Thank you to our founding mothers. And to all of you mothers who are nurturing children, pets or creative endeavors…we honor you. Happy Mother’s Day!

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