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Instructor Trainers

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.

Christine Heckel

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. 

Danica Larson

SweatShop Fitness Health Club
St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

IT qualifications
STOTT PILATES® Matwork & Reformer

Additional credentials and designations
BA English Literature and Music

Bio

Danica became a STOTT PILATES® Certified Instructor in 2003, motivated by her desire to share the mental and physical consciousness and balance she found in Pilates. In 2008 she moved on to become an Instructor Trainer for Merrithew, specializing in STOTT PILATES. She currently teaches at The SweatShop in St. Paul, Minnesota where she enjoys helping students and clients alike to improve their strength, posture and body awareness.

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Danyelle Millar

The Pilates Body
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

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

Bio

Former dancer and competitive swimmer, Danyelle was first introduced to Pilates by The Pilates Body Director, Connie Ierullo in 2000, where she has been a member of the teaching staff since 2002. Danyelle is an Instructor Trainer for Merrithew, specializing in STOTT PILATES® and CORE. She instructs the Matwork, Reformer, and Cadillac, Chair, and Barrels courses. Continuing to further her education, she is currently completing an Honours BSc in Life Sciences at the University of Toronto and the American Council on Exercise (ACE) accreditation as a Personal Trainer. Danyelle is driven to help clients achieve their goals and has worked with clients of all ages and abilities, but she finds it most fulfilling when teaching clients with specific needs or injuries. After the birth of her first child Danyelle and a difficult recovery, she has shifted her energy to teach Prenatal & Postnatal Pilates & Fitness. She helps to promote the benefits of exercise during pregnancy and enjoyment moms can experience while exercising with their babies. 

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Darcy McMurray

Full Circle Studio
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

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

Bio

With an extensive background in dancing and a fascination with the intricacies of the human body, Darcy easily embraced her Pilates practice when she began studying it in 2001 at the Merrithew Corporate Training Center in Toronto. By 2003, she was asked to join the company as an Instructor Trainer and her career took off with international travel to represent Merrithew as an Instructor Trainer at workshops and exams. She also played an intrinsic role in the development of Merrithew’s DVDs, manuals and other course materials for STOTT PILATES®. In 2008, Darcy opened Full Circle Studio in Vancouver, British Columbia, where she continues to train and work privately with clients and small groups. She also continues to attend workshops and study anatomy to further deepen her understanding of mindful movement.

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