Pilates Elder Sonje Mayo Workshop

Refine & Refresh Your Teaching

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As a teacher, you see common issues over and over again. In this workshop, Sonjé Mayo teaches how to identify what is going on behind these issues and how to fix them using cues and props that she experienced directly from Joe Pilates when she studied with him as a young dancer in the 1960s. You'll learn ways to identify 3 types of spines that can help to simplify your teaching, as well as how to align the body for each type and how to keep it aligned as your client moves. You’ll come away with specific cues and props to strengthen your clients in a way that eliminates these common problems and helps them move to the next level. For teacher training, lessons and Schroth work, visit Sonjé Mayo at http://Sonjémayo.com/.

What Others Are Saying


  1. Hesti 1 year ago

    Thank you so much, this is fantastic information!

  2. Urbanwellness 2 years ago

    Thank you so much for this great workshop. It answered so many issues that always come up for me in my teaching, and it gives such practical discussion and tools for addressing different bodies. I’m ordering those pillows now! I especially liked the hangout session at the end!
    Danielle 🙂

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 2 years ago

      Great! So pleased that it has cleared things in your mind…..knowledge is power!!

  3. Madhavi Abuja 2 years ago

    Loved the workshop. One question. There is a lot of controversy about imprinting the spine. I have heard non classical teachers say that Joe wanted the spine to be imprinted which is not good as it flattens the natural curves. However by just imprinting the sacrum and the ribs we are keeping the lumbar spine curve intact. Is this what Joe meant by imprinting ? Maybe The other teachers are talking about tucking which does flatten the lower spine ?

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 2 years ago

      Hi Madhavi, you are correct in saying that this is a controversial issue but if you understand anatomy, there is only one correct answer.
      Joe would never demand imprinting in the supine position.
      He was clear that one can ONLY truly imprint the spine with your hips and knees flexed. If you are lying flat in the supine position, it is not possible to imprint the lumbar spine because that will lead to ‘tucking’. (UNLESS you naturally have a straight, flat, rigid spine and no buttocks!)
      When your hips and knees are flexed, one has the ability to imprint the whole spine IF one fires up your deep core muscles: transversus abdominis, pelvic floor muscles, multifidus and the diaphragm. That forms the foundation on which you build the Pilates method. It is not about flattening curves but about engaging the deep stabilizers.
      If one is lying flat on one’s back, the natural spinal curves will be present. In that case one still fires up the deep core but just enough to maintain a vertical pelvis…….but still no tucking.
      I hope this helps?

  4. mpiccard 3 years ago

    Thank you Sonjé for this super interesting workshop with such little jewels of information, so clear and practical, would be great to have more!

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Thanks for posting your appreciative comment…..I really appreciate it!

  5. hadrianus

    A wonderful workshop with so much information that will help me improve my teaching. Thank you for sharing your knowledge. So happy to be meeting you next month in Stuttgart. Can`t wait!!

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      I look forward to meeting you too!

  6. jbm 3 years ago


    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      And wonderful for me that you found it informative and helpful!

  7. Pamela1 3 years ago

    Thank you so much for sharing this intelligent information with the Pilatesology community. I’ve taken many workshops, bought books that cost hundreds of dollars etc and nothing has enlightened me as much as these brilliant Pilatesology workshops given by you Sanja. I hope to see and participate in many more of your workshops in the near future!

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      That is wonderful! I am so happy that it was helpful.

  8. pilatesseason 3 years ago

    What a valuable time spent watching (and re-watching and re-watching) this workshop! Thank you, Sonje!
    I’m about to order the D roll from Core Products. Could you please also tell me what the bigger roll is called?

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Hi Kristina, I am so pleased that you have benefited from watching! The bigger roll is also available from Core Products Inc and is called the “Foam Roll Positioning Support Pillow” size 12 x 5
      Then there is also a good roll available from Amazon called “Memory Foam Round Cervical Pillow” by Carex

  9. Beauxbrie 3 years ago

    Fabulous workshop and so helpful. Finally an answer for those who can’t do a roll up! I really enjoyed breaking it down for each of the body types and exercises. Now I need a reason to go to Nashville! Where can I get those inflatable balls! What sizes are they? Thanks so much.

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Please go to my website http://www.sonjemayo.com for my email address and send me an email and I can discuss the balls and rolls with you.
      I hope you make it to Nashville one day!

  10. ewapilates
    ewapilates 3 years ago

    Sonje, it is a miracle that we have an opportunity to watch and learn from your workshops. You are MAGNIFICENT! I wait for each and every piece by you on PILATESOLOGY! Love, respect and grattitude, Ewa POLAND. As always – I sallute Alica and Jack for their amazing work:)

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Helo Ewa, thanks for your enthusiastic response. I am delighted that you are finding the workshops exciting!

  11. susan h lawrence
    susan h lawrence 3 years ago

    Thank you, Sonje for your response. Yes, Pilates for healthful longevity!

  12. Tracy Sue Du Plessis 3 years ago

    Absolutely fantastic!!! Thank you for sharing so much, your time with Joseph and all your knowledge, very grateful. I’m a fellow South African living in Australia and I felt right at home listening to you. Just loved it and resonated with it. Looking forward to watching more.
    Thanks again
    Tracy Sue

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Hi China, so good to hear from you!!

  13. susan h lawrence
    susan h lawrence 3 years ago

    Super good info and reminders in here, Sonje. I really honor that idea of imagery and feeling something particular in the moves, and mixed in with student responsibility.
    What shape back would your say Joe had? What today would you first do with him as your student?

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Hi Susan,
      Joe had equal body and leg length…..very good proportions, which makes life easier!!
      As far as teaching Joe, I truly think there was nothing to correct. At 81 years of age, his ribcage was a little inflexible, but that was not the case when he was younger.
      May we all be so fortunate to age like he did with Pilates!!

  14. pjennings 3 years ago

    Love the discussion at the end! Huge, brave, intelligent journey that Sonje has experienced through Pilates/Dance/PT! Thank you so much for sharing! She reminds me of Juliet Prowse, the late, great, beautiful dancer who was also from South Africa.

    • Sonjé Mayo Author
      Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

      Thank you so much…..I have always admired Juliet Prowse since I was a little girl!

  15. Madhavi Abuja 3 years ago

    I do ,, I do ,, I have learnt so much from Watching just 3 of her videos. Alicia more of her workshops plssss

  16. Sonjé Mayo Author
    Sonje Mayo 3 years ago

    Hi Martin, it is called the D roll and you can purchase it from Core Products Inc
    Pleased that you found this workshop helpful!

  17. Martin 3 years ago

    Does anyone else want the 7 hour version of this? I definitely do! This was such a wonderful watch–tons of very practical info that can be implemented right away. So looking forward to more from Sonjé. Sonjé, where can I purchase that slim pillow you used throughout?

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