Sean Gallagher Interview Part 2 - Pilatesology

Sean Gallagher Interview Part 2

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A controversial figure in the Pilates world, Sean Gallagher is a villain to some and a protector of the method to others after a trademark lawsuit over the Pilates name. We visited his studio in New York to learn about Sean’s story and the largest collection of archival Pilates materials in the world which he owns. Visit Sean’s studio at: The New York Pilates Studio. You can also visit the United States Pilates Association (USPA) which has a lease on some of Sean’s archival materials and makes them available through workshops. View Part 1 of our interview HERE. Part 2 covers the following topics and more:
  • 0:00 - Did you take Pilates with anyone other than Romana?
  • 0:20 - Sean was trying to protect the trademark that Romana and Larry Stanton had established in 1980.
  • 2:45 - Romana learned to teach the work for more than her own body and Sean felt she had been entrusted with it by Joe.
  • 3:30 - How did your relationship with Romana end?
  • 4:25 - In 1991, Sean worked to create the manual for Romana's Teacher Training program.
  • 5:50 - Romana wasn't happy with the 1st edition so in 1997 Sean had Romana, Sari and Bob Liekens work together to create a 2nd edition.
  • 6:45 - What happened to the training program that you owned after your partnership with Romana dissolved?
  • 7:40 - Sean's archival footage is licensed to the training organization, USPA in the United States which currently prevents him from exhibiting that footage in the U.S.
  • 9:00 - Sean runs his own training program out of his NYC studio and students enrolled in his program have access to the archival material.
  • 10:45 - What was in the 80% of the archives that Sean threw away?
  • 11:30 - Sean shows one of the client sign in books from the Pilates Studio.
  • 14:28 - Can you tell us more about what you understand about Pilates from the archives? What apparatus do the archives show?
  • 17:15 - Sean has a voice recording of Joe teaching which he describes.
  • 18:35 - Are you planning on publishing any of the archival materials? Or republishing the archival book you did in the past?
  • 20:25 - The home reformer that Sean developed for Stamina products is based on the model that Joe created.
  • 21:45 - Sean describes the 'Bednasium' that Joe invented.
  • 23:05 - What is Sean's feeling about Pilates being taught on apparatus other than what Joe invented, such as physio balls, foam rollers, etc...

What Others Are Saying


  1. Miriam Sanchez

    Loved it ! Thank you for bringing this information out there and sharing !!

  2. Luz Alejandra Lovern

    Great interview Alisa! Sean have a lot of answers that I was looking for. I am looking forward for the publication of all this material. I am always fascinated with the genius mind of Joe! And here I was traveling back in time. Big thanks.

  3. Martin 6 years ago

    What a fantastic interview! It’s amazing putting the pieces together from this interview and the interviews with Cynthia and Bob. Great questions Alisa, and wonderful answers Sean! It’s so exciting to hear about the plans to republish the archival book. It would be wonderful to own a small part of Pilates history. Is there any estimate as to when it might be available to the public? Are there any plans to release any other materials from the archive over time (more writings, footage, etc.)? Thank you!

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