BASI Pilates Module 1 via Virtual learning 

A New Way of Learning Pilates


Starting a Pilates teacher training course during a pandemic isn’t what our recent Brisbane BASI students had planned for 2020. But when the coronavirus hit Australia in March and we all went into lockdown BASI Pilates Australia was able to offer a comprehensive Pilates instructor training course for our Queensland students via virtual learning. Three very different students began their Pilates studies in April 2020 from home.

We caught up with Bec, Beth and Renae (our Brisbane 2020 Virtual students) after they recently completed Module 12 to find out what inspired them to study the BASI Pilates Comprehensive Global Program and what it was like to begin their Pilates course in the middle of a global pandemic.  We’ll feature their BASI Pilates stories in a three-part series over the next few weeks.

Part One – Bec’s BASI Pilates Story

Bec  – Bec Balmer Pilates, Sunshine Coast, Queensland

Bec’s love for Pilates started six years ago after she started Reformer Pilates before her wedding. She quickly fell in love with Pilates after seeing how much it changed her body. Since then Bec has been busy.  As well as working in finance, she’s had two children and taken both Mat and Reformer instructor training courses with other Pilates teacher training organisations. Then in 2019, she registered for the 2020 BASI Pilates Comprehensive Global Program at host studio Pilates Studio 64 in Brisbane.

In March 2020, a few weeks before the course was about to start, the pandemic hit Australia. Bec’s husband was working away, she had two young children at home and was also working in finance from home. She was faced with a choice to take the course via virtual learning or postpone. With a passion for Pilates and movement, she decided to go for it.

These are her words…

Why did you choose BASI Pilates?

I’d done a lot of research into diploma level Pilates courses and had narrowed it down to two. The more I looked into BASI Pilates, the more I felt it aligned with my core values. A few Pilates teachers I’d recognised from around the globe had such precision in their movement and when I’d looked into their teacher training, a lot of them were BASI trained. 

BASI Pilates teaches functional movement which transpires to day to day activities. I love that you get a good workout but are also being taught precision and control. 

 I also love that Pilates is for everybody.  The founder of BASI Pilates is male and it’s great seeing a large number of male BASI instructors around the world. I feel that helps to break the stigma that Pilates is for women and encourages males to get involved in Pilates as well.

What was it like starting a new course in the middle of a pandemic?

I’d been waiting a year to start my BASI Pilates course and was really excited it was coming up in April, but when the pandemic hit, I thought the course wasn’t going to go ahead. So when we were given the option to continue virtually, I jumped at the opportunity. 

It’s a different way of learning but it allowed us the time to break down the exercises before getting in and working through the exercises face-to-face. I was actually surprised at how much we could still do and how well we could be verbally cued and adjusted via Zoom. I was pretty impressed with that.

The other thing I found beneficial was being able to access instructors from different countries across the world to do live virtual classes via Zoom. I’ve been able to do two of Rael’s live mat classes as well. It’s a pretty uplifting feeling knowing that you are moving in sync with people from all over the globe in countries such as Japan, Russia, Greece and the USA, just to name a few! So that’s a pretty amazing feeling! I’m not sure if I would have had that opportunity pre-pandemic. So I’m seeing that as a positive. 

What sort of support have you had from our Australian faculty?

It’s been great to be able to do classes with Jordanna, Shayne and Emily. They all have different teaching styles and different cues. I feel very lucky in having them all as mentors. I think at the end of the day if you have the right mentors you are going to do well. 

I regularly take Emily’s Tuesday evening mat class and Jordanna’s Wednesday mat class virtually via Zoom. I’ve done private Reformer sessions with Emily & Shayne via Zoom as I have a Reformer at home, so that has been great.

I’ve been having regular weekly Reformer sessions with Jason Loya from the USA via Zoom as well, so I’m feeling very fortunate to be able to practice and get some of my hours up from home which is helpful with two young children!

Describe your relationship with the other Brisbane students?

We’ve been lucky because we are all just as passionate about Pilates as each other and we’ve all been trying to support each other where we can. We are all completely different people but the course has brought us together and I’m thankful for having made some good friends out of it.

During lockdown what happened in between the modules?

BASI Faculty, Emily did a tutorial after each set of modules which solidified everything.

We would complete a block of modules and then a week or so later Emily would do a virtual tutorial. We would spend that time critiquing the exercises and answering any other questions we had. So that was helpful. Emily has such a beautiful teaching style and I really love working with her.

What do you hope to do with the BASI Pilates course in future?

My grand plan is to have a Pilates studio. I’ve turned one of the rooms in our home into a mini studio with a Reformer and I have a Wunda Chair and Spine Corrector on the way.

The plan is to have a bigger studio space in the next couple of years, so that’s the goal. I’m just trying to focus on getting my hours up, gaining as much knowledge as I can and then I’ll look into a studio.

Any final thoughts?

I’m really just trying to structure my time to get the hours done. Yes, there are a lot of hours to complete with BASI, but like anything in life – “You get out what you put in!”

Bec Balmer

Global Comprehensive Modules 7-9 @Pilates Studio 64

Global Comprehensive Modules 10-12 @Pilates Studio 64

Renae, Beth & Bec on completion of Module 12

Bec at her home studio – Bec Balmer Pilates 

You can follow Bec’s Pilates journey via her Instagram account @becbalmerpilates and if you are in the Sunshine Coast she teaches private Pilates sessions at her home studio.

We wish Bec all the best with her future Pilates goals and dreams. Welcome to the BASI family Bec!

If you would like to study to become a BASI Pilates teacher our next virtual courses start on Friday, 11 March. Registrations are open now!.