Three stages of learning

What stage of learning are you at with your Pilates practice?

Whilst reading through a Yr 12 PE textbook (Nelson Physical Education VCE Units 3&4, Malpeli, Whittle, Telford, Seery, Corrie), I was reminded of these learning stages so thought you might find it interesting to know too.

Cognitive, Associative and Autonomous

These stages of learning could be applied to any type of physical exercise, including Pilates. While there are 3 stages, there could be an overlap too when you think about it.

Each week in your classes you are likely to be given something new to learn and also given the opportunity to repeat exercises you have leaned maybe even weeks ago. When you are given a new move you may feel a sense of lowered confidence, not be fluid in the movement- be quite stiff but you will improve very quickly.

This can be said for someone who has just started with Pilates. Someone new has so many aspects to think about like how to "drive" the Reformer and learn all it's technicalities. What is the movement meant to be? How to do the movement. As a result of this sensory overload, some people may lack confidence and be jerky with movement and be unsure about how to correct what may not be "quite right".

This is why we try not to overwhelm a new client by trying to get them to perfect an exercise right away. They need time to get the idea and get moving before we start asking them to breathe in now and breathe out now and things like that.

Regardless of whether we are talking about a new client or introducing a new move, there maybe a few questions about what they are doing and a lot of thought goes into it.

This is the Cognitive phase of learning. It may not last for very long at all a clients usually pick it up very quickly. So this phase can apply to new and existing clients.

Part of the pleasure of our job as Pilates teachers is to guide our clients, let them make safe "mistakes" and encourage them to boost confidence because who wants to learn anything when you are made out to be a "dummy"?

We will look at the next phase, Associative another day.

pic credit

Information derived from Nelson Physical Education VCE Units 3&4 Edition 6 Malpeli, Whittle, Telford, Seery, Corrie


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