How I got hooked on Pilates

teaching_imageHappy Holidays! Giving Thanks: Given the season, I wanted to spend this e-newsletter with a quick story of how I got hooked on Pilates! It is something I am truly thankful for.

I moved to San Francisco a little over five years ago with a single intention: I wanted to join the vibrant dance community and find ways to make dance the guiding force of my life. That decision found me rattling over Donner Pass in a U-Haul the day before I began intensive training at the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, from where I hoped to meet local choreographers, audition for dance projects, and set up a life as a professional dancer.

Two weeks after joining the Conservatory, I tore my left ACL. The ACL is a major stabilizing ligament in the knee. You can definitely survive without one, but fast movement that includes quick changes of direction, moving with momentum, deep knee bends — in other words the dancing I had moved out to San Francisco to do — is impossible for most bodies. Dancing was out for the foreseeable future.

My road to recovery included surgery, three weeks of navigating San Francisco in crutches, over a year of physical therapy, and the vast unknown of whether it all would result in the ability to dance again or not. Somewhere along that path I started training in Pilates at the Dance Medicine Clinic at St. Francis Medical Center.

Pilates became a source of inspiration for me. The equipment allowed me to take strain and stress out of my knee as I moved. I was able to both gently rehab my knee and work my body as an integrated whole. My trainer would also take me off the Pilates equipment and over to the ballet barre, where we would apply what I had learned on the Pilates equipment to how I hoped to use my body in my day-to-day life.

Pilates worked. Today, I spend at least half my time in the dance studio, rehearsing with several local companies. Since I started performing professionally, it’s been rare that I’ve had a month go by without a performance. Like the vast majority of dancers, I also have a day job, but I am so thrilled that my day job is something that I love and is deeply connected to my personal story — teaching Pilates!

Because Pilates had such an impact on my life, I am passionate about applying it to help my clients. I’ve seen my clients feel better instantly with movement that is safe, fun, and full-bodied; target specific issues in their bodies; and make them feel better daily as transfer over Pilate’s lessons of body mechanics to their day-to-day lives. It really is a wonderful tool, and I am thankful for each and every one of my clients for allowing me to continue investigating it. THANKS!

Holiday Special

Give the gift of Pilates!

Get your friends and family kick-started on their New Year’s Resolutions with the gift of body-conscious fitness. Whether a beginner at a fitness routine or advanced athlete, a Pilates gift is a great way to show your loved ones you care about their well being. Help someone feel good in their body!

Through 12/31/11, purchase a gift certificate for any package of mat classes, private session, or semi-private session for 20% off.

To inquire or purchase, email Julia at

Semi-Private Fall Special

Welcome to fall! As the days get shorter and we move into the holidays, our natural rhythm is to slow down, seek creature comforts, and rest.

One of my favorite aspects of Pilates is its search for balance. We increase our muscles’ strength and flexibility and make sure we are equally strong and functional in all planes of movement – be it right to left, front to back, or top to bottom, our bodies feel best when they have all options available to them.

As fall deepens to winter, I say we borrow from Pilates’ focus on balance – embrace the need to slow down, but be sure you still give your body the movement it craves to stay strong and feel good. Often all we need to stick to those healthy habits we know make us feel good is the little extra motivation of a friend or loved one doing it with us. With that in mind, I am happy to announce:

Semi-Private Fall Special
Single Semi-Private – $37.50 per person
Package of 5 Semi-Privates – $172.50 per person
Package of 10 Semi-Privates – $337.50 per person
*25% off regular rates. Must purchase by 10/31/11.
** Each semi-private session lasts for one hour and is for two people. Semi-privates are appropriate for beginners, advanced practitioners, and mixed-level partners: each session is designed to appropriately challenge both you and your partner.