How to Get Your Spouse to the Studio

We’ve all been there, trying to convince our partner to come to mat class, only to be met with “Maybe next time,” “Nah, I prefer a workout that makes me sweat,” or, the worst offender of all, “But isn’t Pilates just for women?

So how do you get your love to do your other love (Pilates!)? Lead by example, says a new study conducted at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Researchers found that if one spouse ramps up his or her exercise program, the other might just follow the leader.

If adding an extra session to your already-packed repertoire doesn’t make your spouse hightail it to the High Chair, we’re hoping that our readers’ tried-and-true strategies for getting their significant others to try the method might be the magic bullet for you.

Explain that it will help with another sport.

“I convinced my husband, Michael, to try Pilates once he started running. He started slowly, but soon was training for a race series that included a 5K, a 10K and a half-marathon. Once he got serious about training, we would take Pilates classes together. My main argument was that Pilates would help him build strength and, more important, prevent injury. Our deal was that if I ever saw him running with bad posture, he would have to stop. When he had a stress fracture in his tibia (caused by excessive running), we used Pilates. Now he does stretching and foam roller exercises, and he joins in on my Reformer classes.” —Brittany Taylor, owner of Brittany Taylor Pilates in San Diego

Make it a challenge.

“I got my bodybuilder husband into my studio by showing him a YouTube video of Song Young, the director of Pilates Flow @2nd in Singapore (and a rock-star Pilates mover), doing Long Spine Without Straps on the Cadillac. As my husband is not one to be outdone by anyone when it comes to a workout, I knew he would be up for the challenge. He made me go right to my studio, start shooting a video and talk him through it with no rehearsal. He rocked it!” —Sunni Almond, owner of Studio S Pilates in Temecula, CA

Ignore him.

“My husband was a Division III basketball player, and once he started doing a little Pilates, I didn’t have to convince him to do more. He used to take my matwork class, because he could blend into the group. (I ignored him.) Later he started doing a duet with one of his guy friends every other week. When the teacher was available every week, he decided he ‘needed’ to do Pilates weekly.

“[First-generation Teacher] Kathy Grant told me to never teach my husband. ‘It’s not great on the marriage,’ she said. I taught him once, and Kathy was right: It did not go well. I found myself making dissatisfied faces and asking questions like, ‘Is that all you can do?’ So from then on, he went to another teacher.”—Blossom Leilani Crawford, owner of Bridge Pilates in Brooklyn, NY

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1 comment

  1. LuAnn Reply

    If you give a couples discount then you’ll get spouses to come