Merrithew Health & Fitness

IT FINDER

All Instructors

Kanako Funabashi


Tokyo, Japan

Kanako has been involved in physical training for most of her life and, was trained in ballet, jazz dance, and modern dance since early childhood. She turned to Pilates after a lower back injury as a means of conditioning and improving her strength.  She immediately fell in love with it and since then, her passion hasn’t changed.  She trained in the STOTT PILATES® method in Canada, Tokyo and Hong Kong and in 2006 she received her certification as an Instructor. She went on to become an Instructor Trainer for MERRITHEW™ specializing in STOTT PILATES in 2008.  In 2013, Kanako assisted with the World Tour stop in Japan and has taught instructors in Singapore and Malaysia. A Certified Gyrotonic® Trainer, she enjoys working with instructors and clients helping them achieve their goals. 

IT QUALIFICATIONS:
Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, Barrels, ISP, ZEN•GA™, Total Barre™
ADDITIONAL CREDENTIALS & DESIGNATIONS:
Gyrotonic

Karen Banting

International Training Centre
Toronto, Ontario Canada
A former dancer and gymnast, Karen has always had a passion for challenging the limits of her body. She loved all sports, but always found herself bored by the gym. Once she stepped on the Reformer for the first time, she never looked back. Loving the changes she saw in her body, and seeing improvements in old injuries made her recognize the benefits of this mind-body discipline. Karen began her training in 2010 and became a STOTT PILATES® Certified Instructor in the same year. She enjoys working with clients of all ages and fitness levels, finding satisfaction in helping people become stronger and more mobile, and also excitement in challenging her more athletic clients to increase their potential. Karen also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Queen’s University.
IT QUALIFICATIONS:
Matwork, Reformer
ADDITIONAL CREDENTIALS & DESIGNATIONS:
B.A.

Karen Louise Christensen

Floating
Århus, Denmark

Karen Christensen started dancing at the age of 7 after a bout of polio.  She went on to be a professional ballet dancer working in companies in the US and Europe.  Karen later took an education as a Psychomotor therapist and became the leader of a physical therapy unit at a nursing home. Being pulled back into the world of dance again, Karen continued to work with modern dance companies in Denmark as ballet mistress, rehearsal assistant and guest teacher and opened her own dance school in Copenhagen, later moving to Aarhus to work with a dance company there. After studying the original Pilates method including training with Romana Kryszanowska, Karen chose the STOTT PILATES® contemporary approach for her certification in 2002 and has worked with it ever since.  She is an Instructor Trainer for MERRITHEW™ specializing in STOTT PILATES® Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, and Barrels. She continues to train professional dancers in classical ballet and Pilates.

IT QUALIFICATIONS:
Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair & Barrels, SPX Matwork & Reformer
ADDITIONAL CREDENTIALS & DESIGNATIONS:
Classical Ballet dancer/teacher, Psychomotor Therapist

Katharina Kühnen

The Pilatesbody
Munich, Germany

Katharina Kühnen completed her studies in the Ballet school of the Vienna State Opera and from 1997-2001 was a member of the Vienna State Opera ballet. She moved to Munich to join the Bavarian state opera ballet, where she danced until August 2008. Katharina had her first experiences with STOTT PILATES® while dancing and soon discovered, that she had found a new passion and a second career. Between 2009 to 2010 she trained as a STOTT PILATES Instructor and in 2011 she became an Instructor Trainer for MERRITHEW™ specializing in STOTT Matwork and Reformer.

Mostly she teaches STOTT PILATES at Pilatesbody, run by Michalea Bimbi-Dresp, in Munich/ Germany. In addition she also teaches at dance studio and in a physical therapy and osteopathic center where she is as well instructing the dancers of the Bavarian state opera ballet.

IT QUALIFICATIONS:
Matwork, Reformer
ADDITIONAL CREDENTIALS & DESIGNATIONS:

Katherine Brown


Portland, Oregon USA

Katherine came to the Pilates industry from a dance background, having danced professionally in New York, Oregon and Idaho.  While at University in New York, she came to love Pilates and relied on it to keep her fit and injury free.  She achieved full certification with STOTT PILATES® in 2010 after training first at Pacific Northwest Pilates with Master IT Melanie Byford-Young and later in England with YMCAfit. In 2011, she joined the team at the UK Licensed Training Centre, YMCA Pilates Academy as an Instructor Trainer for MERRITHEW™ specializing in STOTT PILATES, and is qualified in ZENGA™ Matwork and Equipment.  She greatly enjoys helping people understand their own bodies and seeing the positive impact this method can have on functional fitness.       

IT QUALIFICATIONS:
Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, Barrels
ADDITIONAL CREDENTIALS & DESIGNATIONS: