At Home is a portrait series by photographer Chloe Paul, documenting BodyMindLife’s teachers in the spaces they have created to play and practice. We take a glimpse into their lives, explore their relationship with the practice, and investigate how they hold space for their community in the studios.

Join us as we tune in with reformer Pilates Teacher and Teacher Training Facilitator, Charlotte Irons.

At Home with Charlotte Irons

Who are you/What do you teach?

Hi there, I’m Charlotte. I’m Yoga and reformer Pilates teacher, although these days it’s only Pilates that I teach. I’m also a Pre & Post Natal Corrective exercise specialist.

At Home with Charlotte Irons

Why were you originally drawn to Pilates?

I got into Pilates as a way to support my yoga practice. Once I felt the effects Pilates had on my body, in building strength, as well as taking out all the niggles and pains I was getting from just doing yoga, I was completely hooked and have never looked back.

What do you love about what you do?

It’s 100% the clients! Going into work every day and seeing all my regulars is just like hanging out with my friends who I get to have fun with. I also love how inclusive pilates is as a form of movement, and supportive to all bodies regardless of age, gender, fitness levels, and injuries. I love to empower clients to move in a way that feels really good for them in their bodies and witnessing new clients fall in love with pilates is just the best.

What does your personal practice mean to you?

When I became a mum, I wasn’t able to make it to as many classes as I was used to. I had to shift my own practice in a big way. Whenever I get caught up in the busyness of mum life, I really feel the impact a lack of movement has on my mental health so wherever possible I do try to make my personal practice a priority. Movement truly is medicine and it makes me a better wife, friend, mum and human being!

At Home with Charlotte Irons

You are joining the BML Reformer Pilates Teacher Training this year! Tell us about your role on the training program?

It’s such an honour to be a part of the BML teacher training team and teach alongside two of my favourite teachers, Chesley and Chrisen. I’m coming onboard to support them both through the teacher training program where I’ll be sharing my knowledge and passion for all things Pilates; including creative sequencing, effective cueing and how to look after our pre & postnatal clients in a group class.

What are you most looking forward to on the Reformer Pilates Teacher Training program this year for BML?

I truly believe one of the best things about the BML Pilates teacher training program is that it goes beyond just the anatomy and specific pilates exercises, and gives students the practical skills they need to become really great teachers in the industry. Being able to take people on that journey and witness their confidence grow as instructors throughout the course and their mentoring sessions is so rewarding. I can’t wait to meet the next batch of teacher trainees coming through our courses this year.

At Home with Charlotte Irons

You are our resident Pre & Postnatal specialist – tell us about your journey into this?

Before having a baby, never did I think this would be an area I would end up specialising in. However, once I fell pregnant with my son I soon realised how powerful intelligent movement can be; particularly in helping mums stay strong throughout their pregnancies, minimise their aches and pains, and aid in recovery post-birth.

During the pandemic, and in the early days of my son being born, I dived deep into pre and postnatal studies because I wanted to know everything I could to be able to help my clients through the journey of motherhood. I’ve learnt from physiotherapists, Pilates masters, midwives, doulas, personal trainers and Exercise Physiologists to get the best and most up to date science and exercise protocols for pre and postnatal women. With this knowledge under my belt, we’re excited to be launching a brand new pre & postnatal Pilates teacher training at BodyMindLife later this year… stay tuned!

At Home with Charlotte Irons

You originally taught Yoga for BML for many years and then transitioned into Pilates. Can you tell us a bit about this and how and why you ended up transitioning into Pilates?

I started doing Pilates as a way to support my yoga practice but it wasn’t long before I was hooked and doing my Pilates teacher training. Because I was already a yoga teacher at BodyMindLife, as soon as I qualified, I was lucky enough to be put straight on the Pilates schedule. For a long time I was teaching both, but just before I had my son and the first COVID lockdown hit – I stopped teaching yoga, and just haven’t gone back.

Yoga does still have my heart, and I do toy with the idea of going back to teaching, however, with motherhood keeping me busy, I like keeping the practice as something sacred, just for me at this point in my life.

How has your relationship to the practice changed?

My practice has changed and evolved so much over the years. When I first discovered yoga, I was all about the sweaty vinyasa and the fancy tricks. Once I got into Pilates, my yoga practice became something where I craved slower, gentler and more nourishing experiences. More recently I have found love for restorative practices, such as Yin and breath-work to better support my nervous system.

With Pilates I just love anything that gives me that mindful burn. However, over the years and as I’ve gotten older, I’ve definitely become more in tune with my mind and body and always try to tailor my movement to match where I’m at physically and energetically, rather than just pushing through and smashing myself day in and day out!

At Home with Charlotte Irons

What’s the best piece of advice you can give a student looking to do a Pilates Teacher Training?

Just do it. Honestly, it was one of the best things I’ve ever done and I truly believe the BodyMindLife teacher training program is one of the best out there because it’s been so thoughtfully designed to create great Pilates instructors. You will be challenged and stretched beyond your comfort zone, but it’s so so so worth it. We also have a great set of teacher trainers and mentors who will be there to support you from day one right through to when you graduate (and beyond)!

At Home with Charlotte Irons

What are you watching/reading/listening to?

Watching: Just finished Broadchurch – I love British Crime dramas.

Reading: Jo Dispenza, “How to break the habit of being yourself”. When I need a little break from that I switch back to a good old Jack Reacher novel.

Listening to: I’ve fallen back in love with the Rich Roll podcast. He always interviews such interesting guests, and they are just a deep dive into everything; life, spirituality, health, nutrition, mindset and caring for our planet.

Practice with Charlotte live and online, and connect with her on Instagram

About Chloe Paul

Chloe Paul is a portrait and social photographer from Sydney, Australia. Over the last decade, she has created imagery for Prada, Dior, Moet&Chandon, Burberry and Christian Louboutin. Her work has featured in Harpers Bazaar, Vogue, Elle and Instyle. When not working with influential publications and high profile personalities, she can be found capturing the world on her Hassleblad.