By Nicole Rogers
Have you ever wished for an online Pilates encyclopedia? If so, Pilates Interactive, a new web platform from BASI Pilates founder Rael Isacowitz, might be what you’re looking for. It’s an instant exercise reference tool, a continuing ed program and, for those like me who work alone, a digital colleague, packaged onto one site and accessible at any time. It is an extremely handy tool for Pilates in the 21st century.
At its most basic, Pilates Interactive is an online video library of the BASI exercise repertoire. Each video on the site is a demonstration of an individual exercise, and most feature Rael Isacowitz performing and/or cueing the movement. The videos are searchable and sortable by key word, difficulty level, apparatus, muscle, or BASI block (BASI’s unique system). Because all of the video content is streamed, nothing needs to be installed or downloaded onto your computer. The site’s main interface is sleek and easy to navigate and the viewing interface for each exercise has at-a-glance exercise notes, organized into set-up, movement, muscle focus, objectives and cueing sections. At last count, 327 exercises were available and BASI is still adding to the site.
Pilates Interactive also has a searchable “Workouts” section, where exercise videos are strung together so that the user doesn’t have to continually click “play” for each exercise. While I think one of the most fun and creative things about teaching Pilates is coming up with an inventive workout for your client, it’s helpful to have something like this to spark your creativity— particularly if you often teach alone, as I do. The Pelvic-Lumbar Stability workout that I watched gave me some great ideas, and I imagine the more I watch, the more new ideas I’ll accumulate. There is also a special “Spotlight” section that features Isacowitz teaching various workshops and BASI “exercise of the month” clips, and you get to see how Isacowitz teaches the exercises.
BASI graduates clearly will be interested in Pilates Interactive, but BASI marketing director Roy Isacowitz (Rael’s cousin), says that the number of non-BASI-trained subscribers to the service—now almost 50 percent—has been astounding. With so many exercises and features, and BASI adding more each month, I can see why this ambitious service has mass appeal. Beginning instructors can find excellent information to support and enhance their teaching, and advanced instructors can refresh their knowledge of an exercise they haven’t practiced in awhile. Studio owners can keep detailed records of their clients’ workouts, and provide a training resource for their instructors.
Pilates Interactive is available by subscription,and is available in two different packages, Pro, and Studio, which have slightly different capabilities. Pilates Interactive Pro, which is for individuals, is $9.99/month or $99 annually. Pilates Interactive Studio, for studio owners and operators, is $19.99/month or $199 annually. The Studio subscription has a sophisticated calendar that allows you to keep a log of client sessions. Additionally, the Studio subscription allows you to create custom workouts. Roy Isacowitz says the next version of the Pro subscription will have that capability as well. The site doesn’t offer a trial period, but does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, so one can try the system out and receive a full refund.
If you’d like to see a demo of how Pilates Interactive works, this promotional video clip from BASI really gives you a feel for the online platform. BASI has also recently rolled out a new Pilates Interactive iPhone app as well. To learn more or subscribe, visit www.pilatesinteractive.com.
Nicole Rogers is a Pilates instructor and writer. She lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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