The M.A.T. Pilates Teacher Certification Program consists of three stages: basic, intermediate and advanced. Each stage is comprised of a seminar, practical training, personal Pilates sessions, classroom instruction, and practical and written tests. The program consists of a total of:

  • 62 hours of training seminars
  • 700 hours of apprenticeship (practical training)
  • 104 hours of personal Pilates sessions (minimum of 2 sessions per week)
  • 48 hours of classroom instruction
  • 3 practical tests
  • 2 written tests


Training seminars are the cornerstones of the three stages of the program. The focus is on technique of the basic, intermediate, and advanced systems. During seminars, students learn the exercises, how they are taught, and the modifications for body types and injuries. Students also learn how to create Pilates workout systems for different clients. All aspects of the reformer, mat, chairs, barrels, cadillac, pedi-pole, and other auxiliary equipment are covered.

Stage 1 — Basic System Seminar

  • Overview of the Pilates philosophy
  • Techniques of the beginner system
  • Modifications for injuries
  • Basics of touch and voice
  • Total of 18 hours

Stage 2 — Intermediate System Seminar

  • Techniques of the intermediate system
  • Modifications for injuries
  • Progressing clients along the continuum of exercises
  • Total of 22 hours

Stage 3 — Advanced System Seminar

  • Techniques of the advanced system
  • Applying precision and control
  • Applying the principles of Pilates
  • The dynamics of the full advanced matwork
  • Total of 22 hours


The apprenticeship consists of 20 to 30 hours per week of practical training: practicing seminar material with other students, observing sessions and classes, assisting certified teachers and teaching clients. Students receive ongoing feedback and guidance from Dorothee and other teacher-trainers as appropriate. At Metropolitan Pilates, the apprenticeship hours are 8:30am to 3:00pm, Monday through Friday. Attendance is mandatory on Mondays and Wednesdays during the hours Dorothee is in the studio. During each stage students are expected to meet the following requirements:

Stage 1

  • Practicing seminar material — 100 hours
  • Observing and assisting — 100 hours

Stage 2

  • Practicing seminar material — 100 hours
  • Teaching clients — 100 hours
  • Observing and assisting — 50 hours

Stage 3

  • Practicing seminar material — 120 hours
  • Teaching clients — 100 hours
  • Observing and assisting — 30 hours


An important part of the program is becoming proficient in the Pilates method yourself. Teachers need to have a deep awareness of their own bodies in order to understand what their clients' needs are and how best to tailor a Pilates session for each client. A minimum of two sessions per week is required for certification. This can be a combination or private and semi-private lessons as recommended by Dorothee.


Apprentice meetings (classroom instruction) are held throughout the course of the program on a weekly basis. These meetings are mandatory and intended to augment seminar teachings with application to real-life clients. Case-study discussions will help prepare students for practical and written exams. Attendance at 85% of the apprentice workshops is required.


Practical tests are given at the completion of each stage of the apprenticeship. Written tests are also required in order to receive final certification in the program. Failed tests must be re-taken for a fee of $250 per test. Failed written tests must be re-taken for a fee of $150 per test.