Gudbjorg Arnalds (aka G) - Pilates and Barre
Founder and Co-Owner
STOTT PILATES Comprehensive Program
Equinox Pilates Institute Comprehensive Training
PMA Certified Pilates Teacher
Teaching Pilates since 2006, Gudbjorg was first introduced to the Pilates system and its benefits as a teenage dance student. She had been suffering from debilitating back pain since age 14, but she quickly found that Pilates not only brought her increased strength and a better understanding of her biomechanics, it also helped her stay pain-free.
Prior to founding RTL Center, Gudbjorg taught private sessions as well as group classes in private studios and at Equinox, where she was also a Teacher Trainer within the Equinox Pilates Institute. In addition to Pilates, Gudbjorg teaches group classes in Barre and myofascial rolling.
Thanks to Pilates, Gudbjorg has been able to manage her back pain and to do things she was previously told would be out of her reach. She completed a BFA in contemporary dance and moved to New York to dance professionally. Pilates helped her train for and run her first half marathon and more recently Pilates helped facilitate an easy pregnancy, labor, delivery and a quick recovery when she had her son Ari in April 2016. Gudbjorg also founded Pilates Everywhere, hiking and Pilates trips in Iceland with her husband Kyle, in order to share her love of Pilates and (pain-free) hiking through the beautiful Icelandic landscape.
Gudbjorg loves to teach her clients how Pilates can help them achieve their goals and how the increased movement and body awareness gained through Pilates can help them stay pain-free in their daily lives, as well as other movement adventures.
‘Pilates, to me, is so much more than exercise, it is something deeply personal that has profoundly affected my life, my body, and my self-esteem. Pilates gives me hope and makes me feel whole. It has taken my pain away and made me realize I'm more than my physical limitations and injuries and aches. It is both so approachable and doable for every body, and also so infuriatingly and frustratingly hard. It’s adaptable to every challenge (and even every mood!), and its complexities fascinate me every day. Every time I think I’m getting strong and feel invincible something happens, my practice deepens, and everything is hard again in a whole different way.'
Emma Canalese- Pilates and Barre
Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction (10537NAT), PilatesITC
Advanced Diploma of Dance, Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts
Emma first started her Pilates practice as a teenager to manage injuries during full-time dance training and has been hooked ever since. She has been instructing Pilates since 2002 in many different settings including private studios, gyms, schools, physiotherapy and podiatry practices with a range of ages and client abilities. She is trained in myofascial rolling, was a senior instructor for Equinox and teacher trainer for the Equinox Pilates Institute training program. Additionally, Emma completed the two-year conservatory program at the Neighborhood Playhouse School of Theatre, and directs and teaches acting, movement and dance throughout the US and Australia.
'My body has gone through more physical challenges then I could have ever imagined it would have to injure. Many major and minor surgeries, chemotherapy, working through what feels like endless scar tissue. And while I knew that having the knowledge of Pilates could help me get my strength back, what I now realize is that it gave me the blueprint for my mental recovery. There are many times I felt totally helpless and weak but I honestly would take a moment and fall back on the first thing I learnt all those years ago in training. 'Breath. Inhale. Exhale' And then I would see if I could gently connect to my core. And as long as I had that place to start, I knew I could continue to build. When I started Pilates at 15 years old because I was injured when I was dancing, I could not have anticipated how it would serve me in my future and how much it would make me want to help other people find their own strength from it, both in their body and mind.'
Christie Farrell- Barre
Christie is group fitness/bootcamp certified (including Schwinn cycling). She holds a BFA in Musical Theatre with a concentration in dance. She was introduced to Pilates through dance in high school and college. Through Pilates, Christie found Barre class and fell in love with how it conditions your body in a safe and effective way.
‘ I feel my strongest when my body is in alignment. I used to lift weights, cycle, and do very heavy workouts without thinking about proper alignment or what muscles were working in connection to the movement. As a performer, I have to nurture my body and understand what it's saying to me. Pilates and barre have given me an awareness that has helped me heal injuries and support my instrument. I am happiest when I feel strong and healthy and that's when I'm connected to body and well-being through Pilates.’
Valerie Vultaggio- Pilates and Barre
Equinox Pilates Institute Comprehensive Program
Val was introduced to Pilates by a friend after suffering from chronic lower back pain and a college lacrosse injury that left it hard for her to run. After a few months, she was pain-free and could run faster than she had before, convincing her to continue with her own personal practice. After graduating from college and initially working in healthcare consulting, she felt the pull to pursue a career in the method she loved and began her Pilates training program at Equinox, graduating in July 2013. Val instructs individual and group sessions in private studios, gyms, resorts and health clubs and has additional training in pre/post natal and elderly populations.
‘Pilates challenges me to grow and be the best version of myself in all aspects of my life. When I first started Pilates, I had no idea of all the things it would give me. What began as an exercise program to help with constant low back pain became an eye opening experience in the way I was living. Looking back, I used to skip out on activities where I knew I’d have to stand for long periods, but at the time that was so normal I’m not even sure I was aware of it! Soon after starting Pilates, I noticed that I was not only becoming physically stronger, but mentally stronger too. And I’ve tried to carry that mind body confidence with me ever since.’
Sara Ramsey- Pilates
Balanced Body Comprehensive Pilates Certificate
BFA in Dance, Florida State University
Sara is a travel enthusiast and professional dancer from Tampa, Florida. It was during her college years, when introduced to Pilates as a conditioning tool for dancers, that she discovered her passion for the method and began to understand its importance in injury recovery and prevention. She did her trained through Balanced Body under Master Instructor Patricia Welter in 2016. She also completed her certification in Pre/Postnatal Pilates and Diastasis Recti Recovery from The Center Method. Sara loves to share her joy of Pilates with all her clients and to help keep them moving and pain free.
‘I started Pilates after suffering from a dance injury in high school. It was my own personal form of physical therapy and also helped keep me from going insane when I was unable to dance. Since then I’ve incorporated it in all aspects of my life from athletic conditioning to emotional catharsis. I love that it constantly challenges me – no matter how many classes I take there will always be a new idea or concept that deepens my practice and understanding of the movement. As a teacher I use Pilates to help people understand their own bodies and movement patterns so that they’re able to move with intelligence and stay injury free.’
Aryanna Aronson- Pilates and Barre
Comprehensive Pilates Teacher Training, BASI
BFA in Dance, University of Illinois Urbana Champaign
Aryanna discovered pilates in high school while dealing with lower back pain from countless hours of dancing. As a dancer, she found pilates tremendously helpful and complementary to her dance training. Additionally, Pilates allowed her the space to rebalance, release and reconnect for a full body effect. She decided to take her Pilates experience to the next level and become an instructor, because she had felt the numerous benefits Pilates had to offer personally and wanted to learn more and teach others. She completed a comprehensive certificate specializing in all apparatuses and a second certification in prenatal pilates.
Alison Nunez- Pilates
Comprehensive Training Course, Core Pilates NYC
Alison adheres to the "teach the body in front of you" perspective, treating each body in a group class as it is in a private session. She mixes contemporary choreography with classical training to provide clients with a challenging and fun experience, with the ultimate goal to prepare clients to feel mentally and physically stronger through concentrated and focused exercise.
‘I have always been a very active person, however, I was forced to reexamine my lifestyle after excessive wear and tear started taking a toll on my body. When I discovered Pilates it was the only exercise balanced and challenging enough to allow me a full and complete workout while avoiding the negative effects of my previous high-impact exercises. It has come to serve a pivotal role in my life physically as well as professionally - unique in its mind body connection, I apply it’s guiding principles inside and outside the studio to power me through a hectic New York City day.’
Nicole Kontolefa- Pilates and Barre
Comprehensive Training Course, Core Pilates NYC
Born and raised in New York, Nicole was studying theater in Moscow when she discovered the importance of spinal health and alignment when living an active lifestyle. She started practicing Pilates as a way to gain strength and an understanding of how the human body works. She is a graduate of Core Pilates and a strong believer that a regular Pilates practice is the best foundation for an active and healthy life.
Sarah Weisensel - Pilates
Equinox Pilates Institute Comprehensive Program
Sarah has been teaching Pilates since 2014, when she was certified through the Equinox Comprehensive Program. She had always enjoyed taking mat classes at the gym, but really fell in love with Pilates after being introduced to the equipment. Springs work wonders. In addition to instructing she works a full time job, so understands the importance of Pilates to improve posture and lengthen and stretch the body after a long day at a desk.