7 Spot-On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

Literal. Clear. To the Point. I love it when a Pilates teacher does not mince words.

I thought I'd share a few of my faves.

1. My personal favorite and a Sandy Shimoda special.

7 Spot- On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

I have heard this one many many times. Weekly actually. Making the exercises as painstakingly perfect as you possibly can makes for a tense, slow turn of events. Oops, almost forgot Sandy has another fine quote for that too.

The suspense is killing me.

This one popped out due to the glacial pace of my Thigh Stretch on the Reformer. Her comment was memorable. And my Thigh Stretch is the better for it.

2. My own commitment to connection.

7 Spot-On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

It's easy to poop-out in the middle of the exercise.

To anticipate the lying down in the Roll Up. Oh, mat so comfy

To rest when you roll up to sit in Spine Stretch. Cause sitting up tall is soooo easy…

To lie down for a little too long between reps of the Teaser.


Oh you know you've done it. We've all been there. I'm aghast when my teacher points up a little secret rest that's crept in unbeknownst to me. Gah!

My quote takes inspiration from Kerry DeVivo who was the first teacher to explain an ultimate goal of the Pilates workout. Use the exercises to find connection when you begin your workout and never let it go until the workout is finished.


3. Karen Frischmann of Vintage Pilates fame in top form.

Lessons with Karen are jam-packed with revelation. This one pertains specifically to the action of the upper back in the 2nd of the Stomach Massage Series on the Reformer. Mostly we (I) want to squeeze the shoulders together and back, essentially squishing the upper back.

Squishing is not really engagement.

It's just squishing.

7 Spot- On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

Long the Back! Yes!

Squish the Shoulders!

I don't think so.

In the 2nd of the Stomach Massage series as well as its other exercise friends (Reverse Push Thru and Long Back Arms on the Cadillac, Backward Arms on the Wunda Chair) there is more to be had in the broadening of the upper back effectively relaxing the shoulders (in lieu of the squish) which will result in greater more yummy stretch across the chest.

And don't forget to Long the Back!

4. Kathi Ross-Nash gets extra points for gravitas.

I just think this one is hilarious.

7 Spot-On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

I've tried to steal it, but I don't quite own it and it falls flat… But when it comes from Kathi I have to giggle. She says it in a sweet and gentle (mocking?) voice of false comfort while you wrestle with an exercise of outrageous proportion.

Reformer on the Mat anyone?

5. Cynthia Lochard gets right to the point.

7 Spot-On Quotes to Keep you Honest

I am guilty of this myself (of course) and it's a wonderful mantra for clients. It may seem like you need to take a moment to rest.

But maybe you don't.

What would happen if you willed yourself to continuously move for the entire hour?

Endurance. Stamina. Perseverance.

Tenacity. Grit.

Not too shabby.

 6. Jay Grimes always has a gem at the ready.

7 Spot- On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

It's one of my favorites, really and it's always delivered in a silky-soft soothing voice while you sweat it out doing no less than the Twist with One Arm on the Reformer – ALL of it mind you.

 7. Romana quoting Joe Pilates. This one's a keeper.

Pilates is hard, yo. And full of tough love.

What doesn't kill you makes you stronger…yes?

7 Spot-On Pilates Quotes to Keep you Honest

Heard any Spot-On Quotes that really upped your game?

Leave a comment below and keep us in the loop. Then go workout. You know you want to.

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  1. “You’re not going to live there” as in doing 3 or 4 or 5 of anything won’t kill you, or the handle situation with the extension straps is annoying, but you’re not going to live there…

    • Ooh I like that!

      Thank you…I also like to say a variation of that with regard to lying over the Spine Corrector – if it feels uncomfortable at first. “You’re won’t be there forever.”

  2. Excellent! I’ve got two for you.
    Jay Grimes on pacing in general: speed is the enemy of fast tempo
    Janice Dulak when asked about breathing: don’t worry about it, you’ve got 23 hours left in the day to breathe.
    Always something fun going on in the Pilates studio!

  3. “I said you can start the class early… I didn’t say you can finish it early…”

  4. Ok ladies, now we’re only going to use our mouths for breathing!

  5. A favourite from Alan Herdman this summer, “Can you try that again…with a bit more drama this time?”



  7. Don’t count ’em, make ’em count.!
    I say that.

  8. ‘Tough love’, ‘long back’, ‘engage’, ‘reformer on mat’, ‘tenacity and perseverance’, and ‘connection’, all a resounding YES! I would add ‘focus’ and ‘mindful’ to ‘connection’ and suggest ‘move’ (w/o tempo restrictions) and freeze’ (to check form) as a worthwhile addition to an ‘all slow’ practice. Many thanks . . . .SD

  9. love these quotes. Do you take requests for up coming blog posts?

  10. …and here’s what I say…” not easy this Pilates business”…

  11. I loved the quote: “what you don’t like, do it twice”


  12. I’ve always enjoyed. Maximum result with minimum effort, that’s the goal girls. But if it’s easy your doing it wrong.

  13. The first one – slower is not better – is true but I find if beginners do something to fast then it’s usually wrong so I am often slowing them down.

    I am a horse riders too and teach other riders Pilates as it’s so beneficial for riding so I sometimes say ‘more impulsion, less speed’ as this is what we want from our dressage horses so my riders can understand that more easily.

    • I agree. The delicate balance of precision and pace: The pace is meant to challenge the precision, but if it all becomes a hot mess at that point, of course the former needs some attention…

  14. I love the quote “what you don’t like you do twice”
    Thanks for sharing such quotes.

  15. Now be prepaaaare, because it isn’t over when is overrrr – Eliezer Rabelo
    When you think you’re there, stretch another quarter inch – Karen Clippinger
    When you see me for your next class, please bring the same posture you leaving with – Eliezer Rabelo
    Now let’s work the not so obvious muscle involved in this exercise – Eliezer Rabelo

  16. Romana’s quote reminds me of what I tell clients. “The exercise you dislike is the one your body really needs. The ones you love are because you’re already good at them. Now guess what your homework is?” I hated Rolling like a ball (stiff lower thoracic) – do it nearly every day now, still not easy, but it works.

    • Hi there –

      Yes this is so true. I have avoided all the side bending exercises for years – now I love them and they feel so good. Twists too 🙂 Still challenging but feels so good afterwards! Thanks for reading and watching – cheers to you! xo

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