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Christine Splits Cropped

My Pilates Journey by Christine

  • by Christine Bowen - Feb 03, 2021

Discovering Pilates

Read about Christine Bowen (Romana’s Pilates teacher Level 5) and her dive into Pilates. It's the dedication of teachers like Christine to their training and ongoing development which makes us love having them at Maitri Studio even more! Having experienced Christine's teaching first hand, I can testify that her solid apprenticeship training stands her in such good stead and that she is an observant, knowledgeable and friendly teacher who'll encourage you to be your best. You can join Christine for Pilates group classes or 1:1 (mat or Reformer) at Maitri - although currently only on Zoom during lockdown.

This is a shorter version of Christine's full post (edited by me, Claire Ferry).


They say the course to true love never did run smoothly… and for me that is definitely true for my own Pilates journey.

I did a contemporary mat certification in 2012. But soon after I discovered Classical Pilates and the whole beautiful Pilates system. It was a lightbulb moment and I wanted more!

Being from Belfast there was no option to train in classical Pilates in Northern Ireland. I explored all my options (for many years!) and this took me to various countries, studios and ongoing classical workshops.

Fast forward to 2017. After years of searching I found Romana’s Pilates. At the start of 2018 I began my monthly trips to The Pilates Studio in The Netherlands to study with the top Romana‘s Pilates teachers in Europe. After 18 months of hard work, I completed the programme in November 2019. Thankfully there was no blood but there was definitely a lot of sweat and a few tears. I spent 5-10 days every month in The Hague and travelled to Dublin on Fridays between each trip to practice, teach and workout - all while holding down my part-time job in Belfast. I think that most people thought what I was doing seemed like madness but here’s why it was worth it.


It is intensive and challenging with more than 700 hours of seminars, personal practice, observing and teaching. But from my experience it is the true way to learn. You have time to grow and digest what you are learning in your body and teaching. You get support from your teachers and can progress at your own pace, because we’re all different. You are part of a group of apprentices all learning and training together, so you’re never alone.


You learn the full system from the same teacher trainers from basic to advanced and on all the equipment. [The teachers] get to know you inside and out. This is invaluable. It helps you understand how the system fits together and how to apply the system to the person in front of you. And once you complete the programme, there are opportunities to continue to learn.


Believe me, you’ll get lots of it...but I promise this a good thing. It gives you a safe space to learn and get honest feedback for your fellow apprentices and teachers.


Patience, dedication and determination. This is what you need to complete the programme. This process has the potential to change your life as a whole not just your teaching. I’m lucky to have experienced it and seen it in others. This doesn't happen by magic though. I chose teachers with high standards and a talent in being able to push to be the best you can be.


I was lucky to be part of an amazing group of apprentices from all over the world. This mix of cultures, body types, professional backgrounds and personalities all added to the experience and my teaching toolbox.

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Maitri Studio Limited
4 The Mount, Belfast, BT5 4NA

Tel: +44 (0)28 9099 2428

Company number: NI635546