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Instructor Trainer bios

The Merrithew Faculty, or members of our esteemed team of Instructor Trainers, is made up of highly qualified and internationally sought-after educators who are known for their dedication, professionalism and attention to detail. All of our faculty members hold full certification in the STOTT PILATES® method and have achieved additional designations to complement their training. A diverse group, they come from various backgrounds including physical therapy, exercise science, athletic therapy, dance and group and personal fitness training to name a few. Every member of the team strives to uphold the highest standards of training that have been developed worldwide.

Chrissy Connelly
Floating
Southampton, United Kingdom

IT qualifications
STOTT PILATES® Matwork & Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, & Barrels; ZEN•GA®

Additional credentials and designations
GYROTONIC®

Bio

Formerly a member of the British Olympic Windsurfing Team, Chrissy enjoys working with a range of clients from international athletes to rehabilitation clients. Chrissy became a STOTT PILATES® Certified Instructor in 2004 and furthered her training to become an Instructor Trainer for Merrithew, specializing in STOTT PILATES in 2007, and ZEN•GA® in 2013. Currently she works alongside physiotherapists and sports masseurs in a studio well equipped with STOTT PILATES equipment, where she teaches as a Merrithew Lead Instructor Trainer in group classes as well as one-on-one personal sessions.

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Christine Heckel
Balance: Pilates Training Center
Richmond, Virginia, United States

IT qualifications
STOTT PILATES® Matwork & Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, & Barrels, ISP; ZEN•GA®

Additional credentials and designations
ACE Certified Personal Trainer

Bio

Fifteen years of classical ballet training brought Christine to Merrithew and inspired her to become a Merrithew Instructor Trainer, specializing in STOTT PILATES® and ZEN•GA®. Christine owns and operates Breathe Pilates Place (2015) in La Plata, Maryland, and trains her clients in STOTT PILATES and ZEN•GA principles.

In addition to her studio, Christine also provides STOTT PILATES training at Balance Pilates Training Center, a Merrithew Licensed Training Center in Richmond, VA. Plus, she teaches Pilates and ballet clients throughout the Northern Virginia, Southern Maryland and Washington D.C. metro areas – including at Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, VA, and College of Southern Maryland in La Plata, MD.

Christine is also an ACE Certified Personal Trainer. She continues to challenge her own body to learn new movement forms through the study of circus arts, flying trapeze and aerial yoga.

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Christos Alexiou
Floating
Geneva, Switzerland

IT qualifications
STOTT PILATES® Matwork & Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, & Barrels

Additional credentials and designations
Bachelor of Physical Education and Sports Science

Bio

Christos was born in Greece and studied Sport Science and Physical Education at Democritus University of Thrace, Greece. He earned his Bachelor degree in 2004, and after coaching in different sports, he focused and specialized in Pilates. Christos studied at the Corporate Training Center in Toronto where he became fully certified in 2011 and shortly after became an Instructor Trainer for Merrithew specializing in STOTT PILATES®. He currently teaches at the I Love Exercise Pilates Studio in Geneva, Switzerland.

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Claudia Fink
The Studio
Milan, Italy

IT qualifications
STOTT PILATES® Matwork & Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, & Barrels, ISP, SPX, Rehab Matwork & Reformer; Total Barre®; ZEN•GA® Mat & Equipment; CORE™; Halo® Training

Additional credentials and designations
Fitness and Aerobics; Iyengar Yoga; Cancer Rehabilitation Specialist; Multiple Sclerosis and Neurologic Rehab Specialist; Myofascial Release Techniques; Isometric Rehabilitation Specialist and Pink Program® Instructor Trainer; Osteopath

Bio

Claudia first got involved in aerobics and fitness in Paris, France where she was studying for a bachelor’s degree in Business and Tourism. She was drawn to Pilates for rehabilitation after several athletic injuries and soon discovered the STOTT PILATES® method. She became an Instructor Trainer and taught at the Corporate Training Center in Toronto until she opened her studio and Licensed Training Center, Pilates Italia, in Milan, Italy and a satellite location in Brussels, Belgium. Claudia is proud to be a Merrithew Lead Instructor Trainer. She is also an Osteopath. Claudia is fluent in four languages and is a cancer, multiple sclerosis, neurologic and isometric rehab Specialist, as well as a Pink Program® Instructor Trainer. She strives to continue her athletic life, and loves teaching students and clients alike.

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Connie Ierullo
The Pilates Body
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

IT qualifications
STOTT PILATES® Matwork & Reformer, Cadillac, Chair, & Barrels, ISP; Total Barre®; ZEN•GA® Mat

Additional credentials and designations
BA Hons; Osteopathic Manual Therapist, M. OMSc

Bio

Connie discovered Pilates while earning her BA in Dance at York University in Toronto, Ont. She received her full STOTT PILATES® Certification in 1997 and later became a Merrithew Lead Instructor Trainer. Connie co-founded The Pilates Body Studio in Mississauga, Ont. which is now a Merrithew Licensed Training Center. Connie has fueled her passion for teaching movement as an avenue to improved health by continuing her studies in anatomy, biomechanics and physiology at the Canadian College of Osteopathy. As an Osteopathic Manual Practitioner, Connie is inspired daily by her patients and their journey to achieving health and ease of movement. Connie is a member of the Ontario Osteopathic Association.

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