Katy, owner of Chicago River North Pilates (CRNP), directed the Pilates teacher-training program for the PhysicalMind Institute in Chicago for seven years, is a Level 1 GYROTONIC® Pre-Trainer, and in November of 2016, was invited to join the world renown faculty of BASI Pilates. She is a retired dancer, pre-Olympic gymnast and trapeze artist, and has been dedicated to mind-body fitness for most of her life. After graduating from Texas Christian University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ballet, she moved to New York City to pursue a dance career while also studying Pilates to gain a certification. Through her studies and apprenticeships, Katy soon realized her true passion was helping others attain their fitness goals by teaching Pilates.
In 2002, Katy moved to Chicago to pursue teacher trainer opportunities. This led her to open Chicago River North Pilates in March 2004. She maintains a full schedule of clients and also continues to expand her skill set by gaining advanced certifications and attending yearly workshops. In 2011, Katy became a PMA® Certified Pilates Teacher. In 2012, Katy completed the inaugural BASI ProBridge with creator Rael Isacowitz, and the certification for Level 2 GYROTONIC® exercise. She is also certified on the specialized equipment such as the Ladder, Jumping Stretching Board, and GYROTONER®. In 2016, Katy began studying under Katy Bowman to gain a certification in Restorative Exercise to be completed in 2018. She also has studied and hosted Lauren Ohayon of Restore Your Core and will pursue a certification in 2017.
Since opening CRNP, Katy has successfully brought her dedicated clients to new levels of fitness and personal satisfaction. Her client focus is on pre/post-cancer treatment, the aging population, clients with traumatic injuries, and training Pilates and GYROTONIC® instructors. Katy’s unique and intuitive methods of teaching combined with an unwavering focus have given her clients a decidedly fresh and holistic approach to mind-body health.
Katy Lush Striebinger, Owner + Pilates & GYROTONIC®
Kathleen Aharoni has been teaching Pilates and GYROTONIC® for more than 14 years. In addition, she is certified in the Feldenkrais Method®, Cranial Sacral Flow, Life Coaching and SoulCollage®. Through her expansive education and keen intuition, Kathleen helps her clients develop more optimal movement patterns, strength, freedom of movement, joy as well as increased awareness of self. Kathleen is told over and over, “I came for Pilates. I get so much more.”
Kathleen has served on the faculties of Northwestern University, Columbia College, Chicago, and New Trier High School. She has taught and trained Pilates teachers throughout the Midwest as well as Puerto Rico. Through her studio Water over Stone, Kathleen founded the GYROTONIC® community in Chicago. Water over Stone has been featured on the ABC, Channel 7 News, WMAQ Radio, Chicago, the Chicago Collection and Spa Magazine. Kathleen is also a published writer and a regular contributor to Chicago Health, Top Doctors & Hospitals through her column Health Mastery.
This Spring, I breathe my own breath, a children’s picture book written by Kathleen and illustrated by Ann Boyd, will be published. This delightful, sensorial story connects children and adults to “first breath”, the one that honors our differences, celebrates our distinctions and allows us to saturate in our wholeness, disentangled from the stories and drama of others.
Kathleen believes wholeheartedly in our innate wellbeing and limitlessness. To learn more about Kathleen and a schedule of her upcoming workshops, visit her website at www.water-over-stone.com.
Kathleen Aharoni, Pilates, GYROTONIC® & Feldenkrais
Lisa Miranda, Pilates & Yoga
Wendy Freeman, Pilates
Wendy Freeman has been teaching Pilates for nearly 20 years. Certified through Physicalmind Institute, she brings a wide range of experience to her students. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Northwestern University in Children’s Theater and Speech Education, and a Master in Fine Arts in acting from Boston University. She performed extensively as an actor, singer and dancer in the Artist in Residence Program for the City of Chicago, under Mayor Bilandic. Her television credits include hosting and acting in the CBS children’s television show, “The Magic Door.” She also was a program host, producer and announcer for the Chicago NPR radio station, WBEZ.
Her background in modern dance, theater and education, combined with years of competing in triathlons, enhances her ability to teach her clients joy and strength in everyday movement and to create more fit and functional bodies. In addition to teaching private clients and group classes, she has also trained and certified Pilates instructors. Pilates is part of her family heritage, as her uncle and aunt were students of Joseph Pilates and had one of his first wooden home reformers.
Vanessa Greenway, Pilates & GYROTONIC®
Vanessa Greenway, PMA®-CPT has been part of the CRNP team since 2007. She is a certified GYROTONIC® and Pilates instructor and holds certifications from the PhysicalMind Institute and The Pilates Method Alliance. She has additional specialized training in gait analysis and function, Pilates rehab for hip replacement, and BOSU® Pilates. Vanessa is an adjunct faculty member at The Theatre School, DePaul University and teaches Pilates to graduating MFA Acting candidates as part of their movement training.
Vanessa grew up in Eugene, Oregon and moved to Chicago to earn her BFA in Acting from the Theatre School at DePaul. She is an Artistic Associate of the Griffin Theatre and has received multiple Joseph Jefferson Awards and nominations for her performances in Chicago area theatre. As an actor, Vanessa has been a life-long analyst of physical communication, and has found Pilates and GYROTONIC® training to be powerful in creating efficient and agile movement and increased body awareness in her own life and work as well as in the lives of her students. She lives in Roscoe Village with her husband, young son and two dogs.
Elizabeth Lapena, Pilates & GYROTONIC®
Elizabeth Lapena, a native of California, began dance training at the age of 5 years old, ranging from ballet, modern, jazz, and Filipino folk dance. She furthered her classical dance training at the Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington D.C. where she graduated in 2005. In 2006, she joined Inland Pacific Ballet in Montclair, CA where she danced for three seasons performing classical and contemporary repertoire.
In 2009, Elizabeth wanted to pursue a higher education and explore more of the contemporary dance world. She furthered her dance education at Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet/ Dominican University in San Francisco, CA and in 2011; she graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. During her time in San Francisco, Elizabeth worked with Bay area choreographers and performed professionally with Project Agora and Dawson DanceSF.
Elizabeth was first introduced to Pilates and GYROTONIC® through her dance training. She found both movement systems to be beneficial not only to her dancing, but to her overall health and well-being. After an ankle injury, she wanted to share her knowledge of the work and decided to pursue teacher training.
In 2008, she received her Pilates certification through Body Arts and Science International at the BASI headquarters in Costa Mesa, CA. Elizabeth was introduced to GYROTONIC® during her time in San Francisco and trained under the direction of Master Trainer, Debra Rose. She received her final certification in 2011 in Miami, Florida.
Since moving to Chicago, Elizabeth has enjoyed working with a wide range of populations that include working with people rehabilitating from an injury or realizing movement potential in their bodies. She is inspired seeing other people practicing the art of movement through Pilates and GYROTONIC® and loves seeing her growth through them.
Lisa, PMA®-CPT, was certiﬁed in Pilates and yoga in 2000 and enjoys sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm with others to help them achieve their goals. She is always continuing her education and studies and has taken workshops and seminars in Rehabilitation, Gait Analysis, The Study of Biomechanics, Pre/Post Natal Protocol through BASI, PhysicalMind Institute, PMA and other studios. Also an artist, Lisa studied performance & movement, painting & drawing at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is currently working on "Lotus Flowers a series paintings" - creating harmony and balance in her art, her work, and her life.
Dara Pogoff, Pilates
Dara was introduced to Pilates while pursuing a degree in Dance and Choreography from Columbia College Chicago. She soon noticed the benefits, from improving her dance technique to enhanced mental clarity. She first studied a classical method through FFC in 2013. She then went to train at Pilates Chicago in 2014, and is currently continuing her studies through the Pilates Center (Boulder) Bridge program. She is also a licensed Massage Therapist, graduating from Cortiva Institute in 2010. Her approach draws from both Eastern and Western methodologies. This helps with her awareness of anatomy, posture, gait function, and meridian/energy pathways when assessing clients. Dara also holds a Personal Training Certification through American Fitness Institute and has taken courses through PTX Therapy, in addition to teaching a variety of Dance styles to both, children and adults. She enjoys working with a wide demographic of clients and looks forward to continuing the journey.
Zoe Hunter, Pilates + Yoga
Zoe Hunter received a dual degree in Modern Dance & Biology from the University of New Mexico. She received her yoga certification through Yoga Loft here in Chicago, with a focus on Vinyasa and Ashtanga-style yoga. She has studied and practiced pilates since college, and is currently completing her 500hr comprehensive equipment training. When she is not moving, she is playing with her dog, eating with her husband, sleeping or doing postdoctoral research at Northwestern University. Zoe is excited to start teaching at CRNP and looks forward to moving with you!
Jenn Dresden, Pilates
A former gymnast, Jenn's lifelong love of movement and athleticism provide her with a solid foundation for nutrition and fitness. She was first introduced to Pilates in 1998, and soon afterward, her passion for teaching was ignited. Jenn received her certification in Mat and Apparatus from the Physicalmind Institute in 2006. She has also completed programs in Pilates for Rehabilitation and Gait analysis.
Jenn works with her clients from a holistic point of view, taking into account the whole person, not just their body, but also their mind, spirit and sens of humor. Her specialties include athletic training, pre/post natal work, and nutrition.
Dayna discovered Pilates in 2003 as a way to further challenge her fitness routine and quickly became hooked. She noticed improvements in the way she looked and felt. After several years of lessons, Dayna decided to turn her passion for Pilates into a life-long career. Dayna received her Mat, Standing, and Equipment certifications from the PhysicalMind Institute in 2007. She uses the fundamentals of Pilates to combine strengthening, stretching, and postural alignment to help the body function more efficiently. Dayna not only taught, but took Pilates throughout all 3 of her pregnancies. As a result, she now has a very unique perspective of teaching clients through the various stages of pregnancy as well as helping restore strength postpartum. Her specialties include fitness training, pre and postnatal Pilates, and pelvic floor issues.
Dayna Robbins, Pilates