Tips for teachers and studio owners before you create a Pilates for Men mat class:

We have a strong turnout of men in all our classes and personal training.  They range in age from early 20s to over 70 and have experience levels from complete novices to professional athletes. 

We hear from many pilates, yoga and barre studios that they don’t have many men in their classes. We’ve compiled a list of a few suggestions to help increase your numbers. 


If the messaging on your website and marketing does not include men, it will be harder to attract them into the studio, as there is already a preconception that these movement modalities are exclusively for women. (This still exists, even though many professional male athletes use pilates as cross-training!) If their needs and concerns are not being represented, it will be harder to convince them to try it out. Keep this in mind as you are writing your class descriptions and in your marketing plan. 

We partner with a physical therapist who often recommends Pilates to help with back pain. Many of our men have started here because of pain and continued after they have felt the difference it makes in their lives. Another portion of the men are coming because their partners are also training with us. We always let our community know of our “Pilates for Men” class. There was even an article about it in the local newspaper.  The class started small, but built up pretty quickly. Have some patience if you put the class on your roster. 

The next ideas are based on our experiences and generalities. 

Pilates is “easy.”

There is often a preconception that pilates, yoga and barre are “easy.” We, as teachers, know that this is not true! Keep in mind that your male clients should feel a physical challenge, but never be shamed for what they can’t do. (This is of course for ALL people, but I’ve heard of experiences where the female teacher was making fun of the male student when he could not perform the movement. This is unacceptable behaviour from an instructor.) Generally, we teach tough classes for the men, and gradually introduce more subtle concepts as we go. 

Strong but not so flexible

Men are usually stronger but lack flexibility. Consider adding some stretching between exercises or at the end of the class. To make this more accessible, use a yoga belt or towel in the stretches. To our female teachers, just because it’s easy in your body, doesn’t mean it’s easy in theirs. This can be a very frustrating practice, so go slow in the stretching. 

Sitting on the floor can be very hard and uncomfortable in a stiffer body.  We had boxes made so that they can sit a bit higher for the floor work. Yoga blocks would also do just fine! The boxes are included into the flow and structure of our classes, which spares them back and hip discomfort. 

Men can usually get better access to their bodies through muscular effort, not by subtle metaphysical cueing. We do eventually go deep into movement analysis, but definitely not in the first few training sessions. 


Our male community is quite fun and funny. They even have their own WhatsApp group and keep each other accountable if someone has not been there for a while! They laugh together, motivate one another, and have a place to work hard without all the extra typical “gym” competition vibes. They are serious when they are training, but there is plenty of time and space for them to have a good time. Never underestimate the value and power of community and friendships! 

Try it out!

We definitely encourage you to consider adding your own “Pilates for Men” class on your schedule.  Its great for men and its wonderful for your entire studio community. 

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