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Instructor Trainers

The STOTT PILATES® 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.

Julie Staub

Veneta, Oregon, USA

IT qualifications
Rehabilitation

Additional credentials and designations
P.T, CSCS, MS

Bio

Julie became an Instructor Trainer for Merrithew™ specializing in STOTT PILATES® Rehab in 2009. Coming from an athletic background, Julie learned first-hand how injuries can affect one’s quality of life, and now works as a physical therapist, athletic trainer and STOTT PILATES instructor in a variety of settings.  She’s combined these diverse fields into a unique way of re-educating the body’s neuromuscular system. Julie has worked with a wide variety of clients, including college and high school athletes, hospital acute care patients and orthopedic outpatients.  She has recently developed a lecture / lab series that will help enhance equestrians’ performance by integrating STOTT PILATES into a daily exercise regime.  

Kanako Funabashi

Kanako Funabashi

Tokyo, Japan

IT qualifications
Matwork; Reformer; Cadillac, Chair, Barrels; ISP; ZEN•GA® Mat & Equipment; Total Barre™; Merrithew™ Fascial Movement

Additional credentials and designations
Gyrotonic

Bio

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.

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Karen Knowlton

Floating
San Francisco, California

IT qualifications
Matwork; Reformer; Cadillac, Chair and Barrels

Additional credentials and designations
B.A.

Bio
Karen was first introduced to Pilates while at Queen’s University, where she was completing her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology. She began participating in weekly Reformer classes at the STOTT PILATES® studio in Toronto and completely fell in love with the Pilates workout. A former dancer and gymnast, Pilates was a natural fit to help rehabilitate old injuries and maintain strength and flexibility. Karen became fully certified in 2010 and then became an Instructor Trainer in 2014, teaching at the Corporate Training Center in Toronto Canada until moving to San Francisco, CA, in 2016. She now divides her time between teaching clients and instructor education courses where she specializes in STOTT PILATES Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair and Barrels.

Karen Louise Christensen

Floating
Århus, Denmark

IT qualifications
Matwork, Reformer, Cadillac, Chair & Barrels, SPX Matwork & Reformer

Additional credentials and designations
Classical Ballet dancer/teacher, Psychomotor Therapist

Bio

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.

Katherine Brown

Portland, Oregon, USA

IT qualifications
Matwork; Reformer; Cadillac, Chair, Barrels; ZEN•GA™ Equipment; ZEN•GA™ Mat

Bio

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.       

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