Pilates Teacher Training with Yandell

Join Yandell on her seven week journey to becoming a PIlates teacher at the Essence of Living Academy on the Gold Coast.


The journey begins – Week 1 of Pilates teacher training


YAY the day had finally come that I have been waiting for, Pilates level 1 teacher training. What a great way to start the course, a hard intense matt class with the beautiful Tara, the energy in the room was vibing. I’m sure all the other girls where as excited as I was to be finally starting our training. I’m not one to get nervous about anything but to find out the first weekend was all theory on anatomy, the nerves came alight. Combining class with all the yogi teacher trainers we all switched on our brains and got to work. I wondered how I would sit still all day, as I haven’t been in this type of environment since I left school 7 years ago.

I am a very energetic, active and on the go person from the time I wake up to the time I hit the pillow. My daily routine consist of waking up going to boot camp or a run, working all day at a café, then in the afternoons catch a Pilates and yoga class then off to dance training all night as I’m a professional entertainer/dancer. I love fitness and being active all the time so I knew the biggest challenge for my first weekend of teacher training was to sit still and focus. I surprised myself!!! It was challenging but learning about something your passionate about made it easy for me.

Day 2 packed my lunch and off to school again I went. Starting my day with another awesome matt class with Tara, all of us girls felt more comfortable then we did on day 1. Everyone was talking about the exam on anatomy we had to sit that afternoon. We spent lunchtime Stressing about the exam and recapping over what we learnt the previous day. The exam was on naming different muscles in the body and how you would strengthen that muscle in a Pilates class and how you would stretch that muscle after it has been worked. I think everyone was pretty happy with their results as all smiles and positive vibes where in the room. This weekend cant come quick enough as I’m super excited to keep learning and growing to become a Pilates teacher.


Week 2 – Empower yourSELF, cleanse yourSELF!


Week 2, what an incredible, informative & knowledgeable weekend. We had the honor on Saturday to be taught by Dr Rama Prasad, that specializes in Ayruveda-Tongue-Diagnosis as well as 5 Element Body-Type Analysis and uses these along with Ayurvedic psychology to form a complete treatment approach. He taught us the ‘5 elements’ Ether, Air, Fire, Water & Earth and how in every aspect of life you will see these 5 elements.

Everyone is made up of the same elements but within these 5 elements everyone has different proportion and percentages such as distinct body features, their built, their energy, and even the way we shake hands with each other ! We are all our own unique SELF thanks to these elements! It was crazy when we went around the room and pointed out what elements we all were and how they completely suited our life style. Very interesting and cool stuff I thought.

Sunday morning straight up, was a sweaty challenging Pilates mat class with Michelle.  Not only did she teach a awesome class but she explained why Pilates teachers need to be so fit and energized at all times in this industry- I can’t wait to teach Pilates! Again we had the weekend with the yogi trainers for their last day of their course . We played a fun mind game in a circle and everyone got to know a little bit about each other.

Next was ‘Thai massage’ lesson time! Heaven! We learnt the basic technique and skills of giving a 1hour Thai massage. Then we swapped over and received a massage – can’t wait to practice this ancient art !

After lunch we got the privilege to attend Avishai Barnatan sound shower. Avishai uses a combination of ancient wisdom and modern tools to realign the body/mind and enhance your natural healing process. As we laid there in stillness we were immersed with the sounds of soothing vibrations created with Chimes, Tibetan bowls, Flutes and overtone chanting. Being exposed to these healing frequencies enhances a physical, mental and emotional calibration to the human body and energy field. I personally felt the vibrations target my tight muscles and knee joints throughout the sound shower and it was actually quite painful at some points, in a good way though. I felt deep peace and joy from the sound shower and am very grateful. If you ever get to experience this please do as it was something like I have never experienced before !


Week 3 Pilates Teacher Training – Inhale Love Exhale Compassion


Week 3 was a very fun and interesting weekend of Pilates mat exercises. We had the pleasure to be taught by Jenna one of the Pilates teachers at  Essence. With her knowledge and practice combined I walked away confidently knowing that I can go teach a basic mat Pilates class.

Participating in a Pilates class may be all fun and easy sometimes but when you’re on the other side and being the teacher it definitely is not as easy as it seems. Inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth is a very important part of Pilates.

We call this the Pilates breath. Making sure your participants are inhaling and exhaling on the right movement of the exercise, while talking, correcting people’s movement and doing the workout your self is much harder than what you think. It was a great weekend learning these skills and exercises and can’t wait to put it all to practice in a class.

Becoming a Pilates teacher isn’t just about smashing out a hard core ab workout , it’s a lifestyle that I’m embracing to be a fitter, healthier & more energized me on and off the mat in everyday life.


Pilates teacher training – Week 4


Half way through this awesome course and I just don’t want it to come to an end. On the weekend everyone really stepped up and took on the role as a Pilates teacher. We had the lovely Jannine teaching us some of her Beyoncé sexy moves while she incorporated them into the class. Pilates doesn’t always have to be serious – Jannine showed us how to have some fun in our class while still working the core and booty.

Learning from different teachers in the last couple of weeks has been great as they all have different exercises, transitions, moves and grooves. This is great for us teacher trainers to learn and observe.

In a class there are so many different techniques a teacher will use on an exercise to make it harder, challenging or even give options for everyone to do. There is layering a exercise, so for example start with ab crunches, then lift the legs to tabletop position, extending and bending the legs, oblique crunches, legs straight up to the sky, alternating and switching the legs, little pulses and it could just keep going on. Another great technique is changing the different reps so instead of doing 20 of the movement you might do 50 or 100 or go from 10, 9, 8, 7…. All the way down to 1.

I can’t wait to start putting all my knowledge of beginner and intermediate exercises into a class to teach and share. It will be a bit scary teaching a class but practice practice practice is the key. This week I’m teaching a class to my friends and family so I can get, as much practice and feedback as possible. It will be fun so I will keep you posted on how it goes. The weekend was full of sweat, laughter, inhaling and exhaling, and learning all intermediate exercises.


It’s Week 5!


It’s all so crazy to think in 2 weeks I will be a Pilates teacher, making my passion and love be my work in everyday life. This weekend came together with everything we have been learning and put it all into practice and exams. We all for the first time delivered a 3 minute inspirational speech in relaxation whilst giving each client a little massage.

At first I was very nervous but at Essence of Living it’s a very safe and encouraging place where there is no judgment and you feel just at home. All the ladies had great inspirational speeches and spoke from their heart with love and passion. As I delivered my inspiring talk I sent prayers, love and thoughts to all the Parisians that had experienced such tragedy and for all those who lost loved ones.

These real life events are so devastating and affect all of us in the world. We sat an exam on the second day. I didn’t realize how much knowledge I have gained about Pilates in the last 5 weeks, not just in physical but in theory as well. Michelle taught us some fun Pilate activities to help us with teaching a class. Just doing these activities and little techniques will really help me when I enter the teaching world.

What a awesome jam packed weekend of Pilates it was.


Pilates Teacher Training is almost over – Week 6



Full of energy, sweat, nerves, tears, laughter and fun!

We all had to teach our first Pilate beginner’s class on Saturday and from all the great feedback and tips from Michelle all the ladies were unreal and really stepped it up and took on the part of being a Pilates teacher. Personally I felt like I was on the biggest Pilates buzz after teaching and gosh it was the best feeling ever. The room was pumping with adrenaline and energy the whole time and when the hour class was up everyone was so happy with their class they taught. It was super fun putting the past 5 weeks of knowledge and everything we have learnt into practice.

That afternoon we all sat around and delivered a short speech on specific topics relating to the human body. Some of these topics where asthma, pregnancy, Parkinson’s disease, back problems, knee replacements, heart disease osteoporosis etc. I spoke about a topic that is affecting Australians of all ages ‘Obesity’.  Australia is today ranked as one of the fattest nations in the developed world. Almost 2 in 3 Australian adults are obese and 1 in 4 children are overweight.  You can defiantly fight obesity with Pilates if you combine it with other elements of healthy living, such as sensible diet, healthy lifestyle, and regular physical activity.

Using all the knowledge and research that we shared with each other on the Saturday, we put into practice and all delivered a 1 hour special population class relating our topic.

Doing what you love to do and making your passion your work is the most exhilarating feeling you can have. I just can’t wait to start this new journey in my life as a Pilates teacher and I look forward to meeting all you beautiful souls and hope that you will attend my class.


I’m a Pilates teacher – Week 7


Seven of the most inspiring, fun and knowledgeable weeks have sadly come to an end. I have made lifelong friends through out these amazing weekends. To share a space with like-minded beautiful souls really makes a big impact on your everyday life on and off the mat. To be surrounded by such positive vibes is incredibly healthy. I have grown as a person both mentally and physically thanks to my incredible mentor Michelle. She has showed me so much respect for Pilates. My practice on the mat has made me stronger and fitter in ways like never before. I truly believe I am very ready to be an awesome Pilates teacher.


As I look back at this journey some of my highlights would definitely be the Sound Shower workshop which directly affected everyone in different ways. With me it made me so aware of my inner senses – senses that I had never tapped into before.

Some of the most interesting topics that we covered off was the history of Pilates. Joseph Pilates, a physical- cultural enthusiast from Germany, developed Pilates during the first half of the twentieth century. From his physical training regimes and knowledge he created Pilates that would stretch, strengthen, focus on body alignment and increase core strength by the mat work. Pilates is so important for our whole well being and health.

And of course the biggest buzz and one to remember was the weekend when we all taught our first Pilates class to one another. I can still feel the energy, nerves and adrenaline sitting here thinking about it- it felt incredible to teach.

This journey for me is just the beginning and is opening big doors to a new chapter in my life. My Pilates creativity is coming alight as I’m ready to teach all you beautiful readers some fun, sweaty, intensive mat classes. I want to thank you for reading my blogs and I hope you have enjoyed watching me grow and blossom as a Pilates teacher. If you ever see me around during practice or teaching come up and have a friendly chat and together we can share our experience and support this awesome community at Essence of Living. Never let anyone or anything get in your way of achieving your dreams and goals.


Are you passionate about Pilates? Want to start living your dream of becoming a PIlates teacher? Visit our Academy page to find out all the details on our training courses, location and information on how to enroll (or apply for a scholarship!).