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Ballet Talk for Dancers

How many pilates classes a week?


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I am taking my RAD Intermediate exam in 3 month's time, and I really need to strengthen my core, especially for adage. I would like to start taking pilates classes, but I was wondering how many classes I need to take a week, considering I'd like to really increase strength in the next 3 months in particular? The pilates classes are 60 minutes each and I would start out with the beginner ones and then move to the intermediate ones when ready, so there is a variation in the difficulty of the classes. This pilates is mostly mat-based work.

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Don’t forget that training is specific. That means that the best way to strengthen your torso (personally I dislike the word core) for adagio is to do a lot of adagio. One can have a very strong torso, yet fail to engage that torso correctly in an adagio.


Having said that, there is nothing wrong with doing Pilates exercises. Doing regular Pilates exercises will definitely strengthen your torso and Pilates classes are popular. How often to do them? I don’t know that there is a right answer. Old Joe (Pilates that is) said four times a week as I recall. Most of the dance people I know who do a mat class only do Pilates once a week as far as I know. Mat classes are excellent for learning the basic principles and techniques of the exercises. Once you know the principles and basics, you can do the mat exercises on your own.


I do Pilates exercises 2-4 times a week as part of my general exercise. I’ll take 4-5 Pilates exercises and do them as a circuit for about 5-10 minutes, long enough to where my torso says enough is enough. I go by feel and not repetitions or time. Go for the “burn” as they say and then just a few more.

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