UK National Standard L3

Level 3 Pilates: The UK National Standard

A national standard for Pilates was introduced in the UK in August 2005. It was ratified by the Qualifications Curriculum Authority (QCA) and is overseen by SkillsActive (the Sector Skills Council for Active Leisure and Learning) and the Register of Exercise Professionals. The standard sits at Level 3 in the National Qualifications Framework and is known colloquially within the industry as ‘Level 3’.

It is the first of its kind in the world and sets the minimum requirements in terms of skills and knowledge that a teacher should have to teach Pilates matwork.

Any organisation that provides a Pilates teacher training faculty in the UK is able to apply for recognition of its courses against this standard and it is strongly recommended that, if you are about to embark on a career as a Pilates teacher, you train with an organisation whose course has been ratified at Level 3.

You should expect that a Level 3 course will, in total, require about 250 hours of your time from commencement to certification (around 100 of these should be on a ‘contact basis’), but you should also be aware that some training providers offer online ‘distance learning’ in place of contact hours.

Body Control Pilates Education was part of the working group that helped create the standard. We firmly believe that a minimum of typically 150 direct contact hours (students working with tutors either in a classroom or supervised teaching environment) are necessary for a student to fully understand the scope of the Pilates Method, to be able to teach and progress clients safely and effectively, and to have the foundation to build a successful career.

Pilates teachers graduating from approved courses are eligible to apply for inclusion as a Pilates Teacher at Level 3 (Advanced Instructor) of the UK Register of Exercise Professionals ( The Register is the recommended information source for both club operators and members of the public, who may wish to check a Pilates teacher’s credentials in terms of training qualifications. A ‘Level 3’ Pilates qualification is now a precondition for entry onto the Register as a Pilates teacher.

The Fitness Industry Association (FIA), representing the major health club operators in the UK, now have a policy that only REPs-accredited teachers can teach in member clubs.

This Body Control Pilates Matwork Certification is approved against the Level 3 Pilates standard and, in fact, far exceeds the requirements of that standard. We are proud that we were the first specialist Pilates training provider to receive formal approval against the UK national standard for Pilates. This means that students graduating from the Body Control Pilates Matwork Certification Course are automatically recognised as meeting that standard.

Our course is also accredited by ActiveIQ under the mandatory requirement for all training providers to have their course ratified by an approved awarding body.

Please note that, instead of UK REPs membership, course graduates who are resident within the European Community (excluding the United Kingdom) will automatically become members of the European Register of Exercise Professionals (EREPs) as an accredited Pilates Teacher. EREPs is overseen by EHFA, the European Health and Fitness Association. EREPs and EHFA will play a pivotal role in the future development of a European-wide standard for Pilates, work on which is expected to commence in 2012.

The Register of Excercise Professionals                     EHFA approved                              Active IQ