Merrithew™ Lead Instructor Trainer Kelly Dormady had always had a “love affair” with Hawaii, but it wasn’t until an opportunity to bring Merrithew education to Maui came up that she and her husband decided to make their dream come true.
“We’d been visiting Maui every year— we even got married there— and there was just something about it that made it feel like home. When you find that kind of connection to a place, you feel like the best version of yourself. We entertained the idea of moving there, but it seemed so daunting and overwhelming to give up everything we’d built for ourselves in Minnesota, especially a job I loved,” she says.
They carried on with their lives in St. Paul, where Kelly worked as the Professional Training Director at Merrithew Licensed Training Center, the SweatShop Health Club, while looking forward to annual vacations to Hawaii.
All that changed in 2017 when Kelly decided somewhat serendipitously to take a STOTT PILATES® class at Fluid Motion Maui, something she rarely did while on vacation.
“The minute I stepped into the studio, I just thought, ‘Wow, this is beautiful,’” she says. The class impressed her just as much.
She and founder Monique Jutila, a STOTT PILATES Certified Instructor and licensed massage therapist who previously operated a studio in Seattle, went out for lunch and from there an idea was hatched to get Kelly to expand the studio’s education offering.
“When my husband came to pick me up, I got in the car and just sat there in silence for a moment. I looked at him and said, ‘I think it’s time.’ He said, ‘For what?’ And I said, ‘To make the leap,’” she recalls.
After further discussions with Monique and others, Kelly and her husband decided it was now or never. They gave themselves 10 months to leave their jobs, sell their house and belongings, and start fresh in Hawaii in March 2018.
A destination for Merrithew education
By the time Kelly had settled into her new life, Monique had already recruited nine people for her first STOTT PILATES Matwork course that April. Several other courses and workshops followed that year, attracting a diverse range of students, from massage therapy students studying at the local college to fitness enthusiasts and professionals looking to expand their knowledge while on holiday.
Fluid Motion Maui is carving out a niche for itself as a Merrithew Host Training Center— becoming a destination where students can combine leisure time in the sun with quality training and education in studio.
“It has always been my dream to create a safe, clean and comfortable place for both instructors and clients. Our students become exceptional instructors by learning how to guide clients toward health and wellness. Our intention is to meet our clients, according to their own needs, with knowledge, understanding, adaptability and integrity,” Monique says.
In 2020, Fluid Motion Maui is offering a full slate of education courses, from STOTT PILATES Functional Anatomy, STOTT PILATES Intensive Mat-Plus™ and Reformer taught over two months this winter, to a STOTT PILATES Intensive Cadillac, Chair and Barrels course taught over two weeks in the fall, and the STOTT PILATES Advanced program over 10 days in December.
“We have arranged the course schedule so that people from the mainland and abroad can come for a couple weeks or months and receive their STOTT PILATES training in paradise,” Monique says.
By pursuing education away from home, Kelly believes students can immerse themselves in their growth and development without having to deal with their regular distractions.
“Maui is magical. Why not come, learn, continue your education or do your training in a beautiful studio with an ocean and mountain view? From the studio, you can walk and bike around and have a great time.
“At Fluid Motion Maui you can expect to meet a great group of people, be supported the entire time and gain skills in an industry that you can take with you anywhere in the world. This studio is not just a location for training, it’s a community,” Kelly says.
You can find Merrithew training centers all over the world!