The BASI Pilates administrative staff works at the international headquarters in Costa Mesa, California. The office is responsible for writing the educational curriculum, coordinating the course offerings, scheduling, and marketing efforts for the BASI Host studios and worldwide Licensees.
It also operates and manages the BASI Studio which offers classes for local Pilates enthusiasts, professionals and students. Workshops and certificate courses are offered in BASI Pilates Advanced Education, providing professionals with the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of Pilates for select populations and teaching practices.
The studio serves as the educational center for BASI educational programs including workshops and certificate courses providing professional with the opportunity to deepen their knowledge of Pilates for select population and teaching practices.
Lolita San Miguel, one of only two teachers actually certified to teach by Joseph Pilates, was characteristically accurate in her description of Rael Isacowitz. Rael’s dedication to, and passion for, Pilates are legendary and he manages to generate a similar passion in whomever he is teaching. The atmosphere in Rael’s classes is electric—more like that of a rock concert than a fitness session.
Just as renowned as Rael’s enthusiasm is his technique. Described by Lolita as “undoubtedly the best mover amongst the males,” Rael has put his personal stamp on the practice of Pilates over the past three decades. His control is flawless, his athleticism unparalleled, and his physical range phenomenal for a person in the sixth decade of his life.
Passion and technique are only two of the qualities that have made Rael a modern-day Pilates icon. Others are his natural aptitude for teaching and his vibrant intelligence. Doing Pilates is not enough; he needs to know the how and the why—and figure out ways to do it better.
It was not by chance that Kathy Grant, the other teacher certified by Joseph Pilates, described Rael as “the male that Mr. Pilates wished for to continue his work.” Like Joe, Rael is an innovator, a born thinker, and creator. That pioneering quality has left an indelible mark on the universal practice of Pilates, ranging from the BASI® Block System, a unique method of categorizing Pilates exercises devised by Rael, to the game-changing AVALON® line of equipment.
Perhaps the most profound advance in apparatus design since the days of Joseph Pilates, the AVALON® System, which Rael designed, adds resistance to apparatus that didn’t have it previously, and expands the resistance and choreographic capabilities of those that did. It also standardizes resistance settings and nomenclature for the first time. As a result, the range of the equipment has been enhanced considerably and many dozens of new exercises have been added to the Pilates repertoire
Born in South Africa and educated in Israel and England, Rael has a Bachelor of Education degree and teaching credentials from Israel’s prestigious Wingate Institute, and a Master of Arts degree in Dance from the University of Surrey, England.
His early Pilates teachers included Alan Herdman, and several of the first-generation Pilates teachers who are commonly known as the Pilates Elders. To Kathy Grant, Ron Fletcher, Romana Kryzanowska, Eve Gentry, and Lolita San Miguel, Rael owes a debt of gratitude for the inspiration and friendship that have guided his career.
In 1989, while directing the dance department at a performing arts college in Australia, Rael founded Body Arts and Science International®, a Pilates teacher training academy dedicated to introducing curriculum-based studies and academic rigor into the largely informal field of Pilates instruction. In the years since, he has been instrumental in establishing the academic validity of Pilates studies.
Through Rael’s unstinting efforts, BASI Pilates has developed into one of the foremost Pilates education organizations in the world. It is currently represented in 20 countries and over 100 locations and has a select faculty of more than 30 highly-qualified teachers.
Rael is the author of Pilates, the definitive book on the Pilates Method, and the authoratitive Pilates Anatomy (with Karen Clippinger). He has published a series of Movement Analysis Workbooks on all the major Pilates apparatus, produced DVDs, and created Pilates Interactive,™ which is a groundbreaking online Pilates resource. Rael is a regular contributor to industry publications and a highly sought-after teacher and lecturer at Pilates forums around the world.