A Path to Becoming a Pilates Instructor

Have you ever thought of becoming a fitness instructor of some sort? Or maybe you love movement and healing and living a healthy life. Or perhaps you feel your life’s calling is to help people in some capacity. If you answered yes or slightly nodded your head to any of these, then keep reading.

Here in West Michigan, we have our own amazing resource when it comes to Pilates Master trainers. Ahme Bovee is a Master Trainer through Balanced Body with over 20 years experience. Our instructors at Pilates in East and Pilates in Ada completed some or all of their training through Ahme.

Today we caught up with Debra Lappenga to learn about her journey to becoming a Pilates instructor. When asked how she found Pilates, Debra said that it was after her second pregnancy that she found her “new love.”

“My Pilates journey began when I was 5 months post-partum with my second child. Physically it had been a very difficult pregnancy for me. I did Physical Therapy for most of the pregnancy and continued twice a week postpartum. I saw an ad in the newspaper for Pilates classes, and they were cheaper than what I was paying for PT. I signed up for two mat classes/week. After the first class, I came home and told my husband that I loved it and I was never going to stop!”

After being a Pilates student for 10 years, Debra’s thoughts began to turn to the possibilities of becoming an instructor.

“For 15 years I’d been a stay-at-home mom, and as my youngest daughter started preschool, I really started to consider in earnest what my next phase of life should look like. Pilates had been a staple in my life for a decade and I knew it always would be, so becoming an instructor seemed like a logical next step. I knew whatever I added into my life I had to have a real passion for…and I’m definitely passionate about Pilates!”

When coming to the conclusion that becoming a Pilates instructor could just be the next right thing for her, Debra asked her Pilates instructor (and studio owner of Pilates in Holland), Mandy Compagner about where to begin.

“Ahme came highly recommended by my instructor, Mandy Mandy said she’d only hire instructors trained by Ahme. After my first training weekend I understood why. Ahme is kind,  encouraging, patient, and a life-long learner. She includes everyone in the discussions, she never talks down to anyone (even when someone asks lots of questions…me!), and she’s incredibly knowledgeable. It’s clear she loves what she does and is keenly interested in investing and mentoring the next generation of Pilates instructors.”

So, what’s next for Debra?

“I’ve already begun using my training as an instructor-in-training at Pilates in Holland. I currently teach 2 group reformer classes/week, 2 mat classes/week, and have multiple private clients. It’s been such a perfect fit! I can’t even bring myself to call it work, Pilates is my passion!”

If Debra’s story resonates with you or you are just curious about dipping your toe in the Pilates pool, you can see the list of upcoming Instructor Training Courses taught by Ahme here. For those of you who are quick decision makers, you can get started as early as this upcoming weekend with Movement Principles! 🙂 We might be biased, but as instructors, we do think that we have the best jobs in the world!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *