On-going education is vital... Knowledge is power!


Cara Reeser provides advanced study weekends for Pilates instructors outside Colorado, bringing a breadth of knowledge and experience. Stimulate again your commitment to Pilates and add a layer to your wisdom as an instructor.

Course Offerings

The Advanced Workout
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

What makes an “advanced” exercise advanced? We will look what the most challenging exercises are in terms of the movement and body skills it takes to perform them successfully. Cara will teach a “building blocks” approach to executing and teaching the most advanced exercises in the Pilates Vocabulary. In this way, Cara will help you discover how some “advanced” exercise might be more easily accessible to both you and your clients than you thought! Exercises will be explored on the Mat, Reformer, Cadillac, and Chair. Instructors will learn valuable tools for teaching the advanced work and have an opportunity in a safe and non-judgmental environment to try it all!

From Head to Toe ~ The Full Body Low Chair Workout
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Exploring vertical, horizontal, and spiral lines – gravity, balance and space we will expand our appreciation and understanding of the Low Chair workout. Using the entire repertory on the chair we will work together to feel, describe and cue the body from head to toe. Come prepared to play!

The Perfect Preparation: Skill building for full expression in your Pilates practice.
2 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Kathy Grant brought a great wealth of knowledge and creativity to the work she taught.
She always told us that she wanted us to be warmed up and well prepared to practice the exercises that Mr. Pilates taught her. Kathy called her preparatory work “Before the Hundreds” In this course we will explore some of the skill building exercises from both Kathy’s vocabulary and mine, with an eye towards helping our clients gain more control, greater range, and improved alignment, with the ultimate goal of expressing themselves fully while practicing the traditional Pilates repertory.

Good Tension vs. Bad Tension: How to balance our effort and range in our Pilates practice.
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Tension is often thought of as undesirable and is often blamed for tightness, discomfort, and range of motion limitations. The question is: when we are unsuccessful at our physical goals is it because we are not using enough tension or we are using too much?
In this course we will discuss techniques, cues, and images that will help support the right level of tension or effort for the tasks at hand. Focusing on direction, space, speed, duration and force, we will find ways to guide our tension so it works when needed and releases when necessary.

The Apparatus Playgrounds:
Low Chair 6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)
Cadillac 6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)
Mat 6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)
Reformer 6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)
Pole 6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Having an endless infatuation with the moving body, energy, space, gravity and big bold movement, Cara will offer an opportunity to jump in, on and off the Pilates apparatus. Emphasizing our relationship to spring tension, points of contact and moving energy we will use the Pilates repertory as our template to engage and ground ourselves in the subtle and playful energy of the apparatus.

Refresh and Energize Using the Cadillac and Barrel
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Explore a wide range of exercises for the Cadillac and Barrels. We will review, practice and learn both the “classical” exercises as well as new moves and creative modifications. Students will enjoy expanding their current use of the barrels and the Cadillac while creating smart and specified programs for their diverse clientele.

Kathy Grant Retrospective
6 or 12 Hours CEC (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Kathleen Stanford Grant began her studies with Joseph Pilates in the mid 1950’s in his New York City studio. In the years that followed, she carried on the work she learned from her teachers Joe and Clara Pilates, her mentor Carola Trier and her peers, teaching what we now call Pilates. Kathy taught with a deep understanding and sensitivity; she was a healer, using her imagination, her experience and her intuition as her guide. In the five decades that she taught, she developed a stunning vocabulary, view and method that she passed along to her closest students. In this course, Cara will share a very personal and treasured collection of exercises, images, and stories through her lens.

Big and Bold Moves: A journey into Spinal Extension and Arm Standing
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

It is often at the end range of expression in our moving bodies that we hesitate and pull back. In this course we will work towards the full expression of back bending and arm standing. With a playful approach: an eye towards alignment, range of motion, strength building and proper mechanics students will take the journey towards these big and bold movements with out holding themselves back. Starting from the most basic skills, participants will be challenged to take risks in their personal back bending and arm standing practices, in a safe and lighthearted environment. We will work together to examine the building blocks for full range and strength in theses exercises, developing new ways of preparing our selves and our students to successfully move upside down and inside out!

Freeing up your Neck and Shoulders: A Pilates Movement Intensive
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

Unnecessary tension, poor alignment and over correcting are all components that add to excessive tightness and limited range of motion in our necks and shoulders. In this course we will explore ways to create increased freedom in the movement of the neck, upper spine, shoulder girdle and arms. By learning new techniques and visualizations for employing less tension and improving alignment, you will be able to better use many of the Pilates exercises to focus on increased strength, range of motion and easeful execution of all your upper body movement goals.

Extend, Rotate and Side-bend: The other core work!
6 CEC Hours (the number of CEC hours are negotiable)

In this course we will focus on developing better skills for well executed spinal extension, rotation and side-bending. Employing the muscles of our backs, necks, and shoulder girdles in concert with our abdominals to support a strong upright posture increases range of motion and strength in all directions. Adding more extension, rotation and side-bending will get our backs out of the dreaded forward slump!
Some anatomical review will be offered. Skills will be explored using traditional and non-traditional exercises on all of the Pilates apparatus.

Movement Science Made Simple Course Offerings
(2-day workshops with Cara Reeser and Jeremy Laverdure)

About Movement Science Made Simple
Most movement teachers and fitness instructors have studied human anatomy, but it’s difficult to make good use of that knowledge without some understanding of physiology and kinesiology. Movement Science Made Simple is a series of courses designed to teach Pilates and Yoga instructors the essentials of movement science in a way that can be immediately applied to one’s practice and teaching.
In each course’s Lecture component we will:
• Review musculoskeletal anatomy in depth, including an overview of ligamentous structures.
• Learn joint structures, kinematics, and normal ranges of motion.
• Introduce basic concepts from motor learning theory.
In the Lab component we will:
• Perform simple exercises to translate the lecture material into
classical Pilates and Yoga movement.
• Look at different bodies to familiarize ourselves with normal
variations in structure.
• Develop new ways of seeing and cuing movement based on a more complete understanding of the body.

The MSMS Lectures draw on Jeremy’s graduate studies in anatomy, physiology and kinesiology and Cara’s experience as a dance educator and master Pilates teacher. To the Lab, we bring our decades of
practicing and teaching Pilates, a deep practice of Yoga, and years of tutelage under such movement visionaries as Kathleen Stanford Grant, Irene Dowd, Barbara Mahler, and Nancy Topf.

Look, Listen, Push, Pull: Training Freedom and Support in the Head, Neck and Shoulders
2-days, 12 CEC Hours

Our neck functions to position our head for seeing, hearing, and communicating. Our shoulders are meant to allow our arms and hands to reach, grasp, and push in a large range. Easy enough, right? So why do our clients experience so much difficulty and discomfort in their neck and shoulders? Poor postural habits, learned physical attitudes, and our universal use of computers probably contribute. But, as Pilates and Yoga teachers, are we helping our clients retrain bad patterns or just adding new ones?
In this Movement Science Made Simple course we will:
• Study the organization of the head, neck, and shoulder girdle in common Pilates exercises and Yoga asanas.
• Examine the relationship between the arms, shoulder girdle and trunk in both open and closed kinematic chains. We know poor use of the neck and shoulders when we see it, but what are we really seeing?
• Learn simple exercises and gentle hands-on techniques for mobilizing the neck and shoulders and re-patterning their movement.

Separate But Connected: Training Selective Control of the Hips, Pelvis and Low Back
2-days, 12 CEC Hours

Freedom and stability in the trunk depend on freedom and stability in the hips.In this course, we will use the model of lumbo-pelvi- femoral rhythm as a means oforganizing the legs, pelvis, and low back in whole body movements. This model integrates and improves upon both static models of lumbar stabilization (neutral pelvis/spine) and the Classical Pilates view of spinal mobility (“one vertebra at a time”).

As teachers, our tools are demonstration, touch, and language. To be effective teachers our demonstration must be fully embodied, our touch supportive, and our language direct or poetic as needed. Movement Science Made Simple joins current concepts in anatomy, kinesiology, and motor learning with time-tested movement training strategies, giving workshop participants new skills to work with diverse client populations.

Your Song Is Your Strength: The Breathing Mechanism and Core Control
2-days, 12 CEC Hours
One current model of the body’s “core” includes the abdominal and low back muscles, the thoracic diaphragm, and the pelvic floor. Because these muscles are also intimately involved in breathing, breath control and core control are inseparable. Understanding the implications of this model makes it easier to correctly and safely coach both Pilates exercises and functional movement.

In this Movement Science Made Simple course, we examine:
• How the abdominals, diaphragm, and pelvic floor work together as part of the breathing mechanism, and as movers and stabilizers of the lumbar spine and pelvis.
• The physiology of breathing, emphasizing the interplay between voluntary and involuntary regulation.
• The role of intra-abdominal pressure in low back stability, and the necessity of both abdominal “hollowing” and abdominal “bracing” movement strategies.
• Supportive and stabilizing functions of the pelvic floor, including its role in intra-pelvic stability.

Beginning with breathing exercises from Pilates, yoga, and physical therapy, we will build a strong foundation for our own movement. As the relationship between breath control and core control becomes clear, course participants will learn how breathing strategies can facilitate or undermine movement strategies.

Stand And Deliver: Understanding the Lower Extremity Kinetic Chain
2-days, 12 CEC Hours
Humans are bipedal animals, with the various muscles and joints of the legs working together to produce controlled movement through space. In Pilates, we train in both gravity-eliminated and weight-bearing positions to optimize this upright functioning. By understanding how the hip, knee, ankle, and foot interact, we can more easily see where our clients’ movement is going wrong, and are more able to coach them safely and effectively.

In this Movement Science Made Simple course, we:
• Study the anatomy of the lower extremity, with an emphasis on how the hip and the foot affect the knee
• Learn Pilates protocols for promoting mobility and stability in the lower extremity
• Examine common structural variations, such as genu valgum (“knock knees”) and genu varum (“bow legs”) and learn to adapt our Pilates protocols to accommodate or correct them, as appropriate

The Brain in Pain: Movement Coaching and Modern Neuroscience
2-days, 12 CEC Hours
Many of our Pilates clients seek us out because they are in pain, and most of our clients will have pain at one time or another. Often, the pain will resolve as tissues heal, muscles strengthen, and the client improves their overall fitness. But how do we judge how fast to progress a client in pain? And what about the people who don’t get better?

In order to work effectively we must understand what pain is, and the role of the central nervous system in pain processing. Advances in pain science demonstrate that rather than being simply a signal from the body that something is wrong, pain is an output of the brain. And each individual’s pain experience depends not just (and sometimes not at all) on tissue damage, but on their history, their thoughts and beliefs, and the baseline state of their nervous system. Further, research has shown that educating our clients about pain can reduce their pain and improve their function.

In this Movement Science Made Simple course, we will:
• Update our understanding of pain, and learn to convey that understanding to clients
• Practice movement protocols for getting started with clients in pain
• Study the basic physiology needed to work confidently with painful conditions

Cara Reeser Fee Information:

• Workshops may be structured as one or two day (weekend) courses.
• Standard Course Fees are based upon a maximum of a 6 hours/day, not including a one hour break.
• Cara may be available before or after the scheduled workshop for Private Sessions and/or Master Classes* if previous arrangement have made and her schedule is permitting.
* Master Classes are typically 1 or 2 hour classes and may be designed for clients and teachers or exclusively for teachers.
• Cara Reeser’s fees start at $1,500/day, with the exception of additional fees for Private Sessions and Master Classes that are scheduled in conjunction with one or two day workshops. Dependent on the number of workshop attendants, if the host studio profits are greater than $1,500, then the profit will be shared in a 70% (Cara) to 30% (Host Studio) split.
• Travel expenses are additional to the Workshop fee and include airfare, ground transportation, accommodations and meals.
• A deposit of $500.00 is due at the time of booking. The balance and travel expense reimbursement will be due at the completion of the workshop.

Cara’s Workshop Fees:
One Day Workshop in the US- $1, 500.00
Two Day Workshop in the US- $3,000.00
1-hour Master Class- $250.00
2-hour Master Class- $500.00
Private Sessions- $95.00 (Payment will go directly to Cara)

Movement Science Made Simple Fee Information:

• Each course is two 7-hour days, including a 1-hour lunch break each day.
• 12 PMA CECs are available for course attendees.
• Travel expenses are additional to the Workshop fee and include airfare, ground transportation and accommodations.
•Cara and/or Jeremy may be available before or after the scheduled course for Private Sessions and/or Master Classes*.
• A deposit is due at the time of booking. The balance and travel expense reimbursement will be due at the completion of the course.
* Master Classes are typically 1 or 2 hour classes and may be designed for clients and teachers or exclusively for teachers.

Movement Science Made Simple Workshop Fees:
contact us for bookings and pricing for US and abroad.

Call 303.886.6925 or e-mail info@pilatesaligned.com if you would like to discuss a traveling workshop to come to your community!

Pilates Aligned

Sharing the Pilates tradition, inspiring individuals, and teaching the endless potential of the moving body is what Pilates Aligned is all about.

Learn more about Cara at Pilates Aligned, where she can be found when she is at home in Denver, CO