Pilates has potential to be a lucrative career in many different ways. A career in the Pilates industry can be very flexible in the daily hour structure- enabling practitioners to use many different approaches to generate revenue.
Simply being employed as a Pilates Instructor is the initial entry point for many professionals and the base wage for a qualified Pilates instructor is generally around $35 an hour, depending on the studio.
According to widely accepted Government figures, and the Fitness Industry Award MA000094:
The wage of a qualified Pilates Instructor is above Level 7 Full/Par time and Casual, illustrating that Pilates Instructors are paid more than corresponding earners in the Fitness Industry.
Working within a Pilates or Allied Health studio can certainly be an improvement on the typical ‘nine to five’-style office job. While you may not have the opportunity to work eight hours a day in the typical Pilates studio because most do not operate on those ‘nine to five’ hours! You are more likely to be using the enlightening Plates framework to only work four hours a day BEFORE 11am and then the next 4 hours after 3pm- giving you the opportunity utilise the rest of the time in between to do whatever you like.
As far as the actual hours workable, most studios run morning or afternoon shifts with the odd few offering midday classes for clients on their lunch hour. This enables you as a Pilates Instructor to potentially choose to only work the morning or afternoon shifts, and in that way, maximize whatever part of the day you need most. Whether it be making sure you’re home on time to pick up the kids from school, or working on University assignments during the day, or if you just can’t go a day without a morning jog or swim- then studio shift work can be very attractive to those who seek a healthier and more time-rich lifestyle.
Starting a home studio or mobile Pilates business is another option for the Pilates professional. This, of course, depends greatly on your home, the zoning regulations in your area and what kind of practice you’d like to run. If you have a large amount of space available or can find a community hall or similar building to use, beginning to offer mat Pilates offers a low start-up cost and can be a consistent earner with mat participants who are prepared to pay anywhere from $10-$20 per class. A simple schedule with groups of 6+ clients in each class can easily yield upwards of $1500 a week and be run by just one Pilates Instructor. Teaching about 4 hours a day depending on your location, and skill in teaching, it is possible to create a very success business by just teaching Pilates Mat classes.
If you have a suitable space and an amount of start-up capital available to be invested then an equipment-based studio may be more up your alley. Clients will pay more for equipment classes than they will for Mat classes and even though the initial outlay costs are far greater than starting a Mat Pilates business, a studio with 5 Pilates Reformers could potentially earn $3000 per week, based upon the teaching of 4 hours a day.
Continuing the specialization further, another option is to become a Clinical Pilates Rehabilitation studio, specialising in private sessions along with some small group classes. This type of Pilates studio can actually be initially cheaper than a larger, all Reformer studio, as the amount of equipment required is spread between between Reformers and Wunda Chairs etc. A small Clinical Pilates Rehabilitation studio, with five varied pieces of Pilates machinery that offers specialized programming and one-on-one sessions offered could easily make the same as a purely reformer studio, with a lower start-up cost and a more committed client base who come along more frequently to work on their with specific pathology rehabilitation.
Lastly we have the scenario where the a permanent space is acquired either by lease or purchase and the Qualified Pilates Instructor establishes a larger studio from that space. The most cost and time consuming aspect of this scenario can be having additional staff working for the business, but this enables the studio to be run consistently and provides the studio with more potential times to offer additional classes or other ventures. Many studios of this type will add beauty therapy, massage, Physiotherapy or other Allied Health modalities to the daily services- both increasing potential revenue and also broadening the client base. A small studio with 5 pieces of equipment and one additional staff member could easily have a gross earning potential of over $7000 a week. Of course, this depends greatly on the location and times offered by the studio.
Note that all of these estimates are all based upon FOUR CLASSES A DAY, five days a week. Making it a grand total of 20 hours worked a week. This is an approximate scenario which could be suited to just about any location- from a big city to a regional area. These calculations illustrate that the hourly wage of a Qualified Pilates Instructor can be up to $150 an hour.
There are few careers in the job market in which you can decide you’d like to study and then be earning $150 an hour within two years of that decision. Done right, Pilates can provide not only a lucrative and satisfying career choice, but can also be re modelled at any time to fit whatever your life needs at any given time.
With the right location, marketing and expertise, owning and operating a Pilates business can comfortably satisfy even the hungriest entrepreneur.