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Instructors

Introducing our wonderful instructors. Each one brings something unique to their class. Read below to find out where they were trained and what special skills they have learned along their Pilates journey...

Hanh Tran Pilates Instructor

Hanh Tran (Prenatal, Postnatal, Cancer Exercise Specialist, Group Classes, One-on-One Instruction)

Thuc-Hanh Tran (Hanh) received her Pilates Comprehensive Mat and Equipment certification from the Kane School of Core Integration, her certifications in Prenatal and Postnatal Pilates, Momilates®, and Stroller Moves® from Bella Bellies®; and is a licensed instructor of Pilates for Buff Bones®, a bone-strengthening program for those with osteoporosis or those seeking to prevent it. Hanh continually seeks to deepen her understanding of different topics, attending classes, workshops and seminars on bone health, diastasis recti, working with seniors, sacro-illiac joint dysfunction, shoulders, knees, neck, back… with prominent teachers like Kelly Kane, Matt McCullough, Debbi Goodman, MPT, Lolita San Miguel, Julie Tupler, RN, Rebekah Rotstein, Balanced Body Pilates on Tour among others. Her best learning, however, has come from experiences with clients vastly different from one another in body and mind who she’s been blessed to work with over the years.

Hanh also has been a professional dancer (The King and I on Broadway, the Martha Graham Dance Company..), actor, choreographer, dance teacher (most extensively at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts), refugee camp worker, health education assistant, and is mother to two amazing kids.

“I look forward to working with you towards fuller movement possibilities, optimum health, and greater enjoyment and appreciation of your body.

Julia Granacki Pilates Instructor
Julia Granacki (Prenatal, Postnatal, Group Classes, One-on-One Instruction) 
Julia is a Kane School of Pilates graduate. She received her BFA from the University of Central Florida and her health coaching certification from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, with special coursework in hormone health and a focus on perimenopause, menopause, and burnout. She believes that midlife does not have to be miserable, that it’s never too late to start aging well, and that a sense of humor is key to living your best life!

She co-hosts the perimenopausal podcast, Circling the Drain: a show about the period before you stop getting your period. She is also a three-time alumnus of the switched-up storytelling series, No You Tell It!

She studied meditation and philosophy at Philosophy Works in New York City, where she received her mantra for Transcendental Meditation in 2013. She has been an avid practitioner of both mindfulness and TM ever since.
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Morgan Refakis (Prenatal, Postnatal, Group Classes, One-on-One Instruction)

Morgan Refakis is a Pilates instructor with over a decade of experience. She has completed comprehensive Pilates certifications at both Balanced Body and Equinox Pilates Institute. She was previously a Senior Instructor at Flex Studio in Hong Kong. Before moving abroad, she was an Instructor and Area Manager for Equinox Health Club in New York City.

Dorela Cheban Pilates Instructor
Dorela Cheban (Prenatal, Postnatal, Group Classes)

Dorela was born and raised in the USSR, but in her late teens relocated to the US in order to pursue her dreams. She has always strived to live an active and healthy lifestyle through different types of fitness training programs including spinning and boxing; but it was after deciding to try Pilates that Dorela really found her niche. Now having practiced for over ten years, Pilates has given her killer core strength, a strong sense of body awareness, and the flexibility she has always desired. Pilates also remains a positive outlet from her stressful and sometimes demanding career in the finance industry.

Dorela received her Pilates Mat and full Apparatus certification from the prestigious Kane School of Core Integration, training under founder Kelly Kane. She is excited to share her love of Pilates and is dedicated to helping her clients move their bodies in an optimal way for maximum results. Dorela’s knowledge and passion shows in her class repertoire. She uses different props to challenge and keep her clients interested but also makes sure to personalize and guide students through workouts that meet their specific needs. She teaches that body awareness, breath, discipline and control are all key cornerstones to having successful and enjoyable sessions. At the end of the day, her goal is to educate people on how to improve their lives through Pilates, while helping to inspire students of all levels reach their true potential.

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Susan Wong (Group Classes)

My name is Susan. I am a small batch producer of specialty baked goods, an Alexander Technique (AmSAT) and Pilates teacher (The Kane School), a business transformation leader, a road cycler and a student of QiGong. I was meant to move, to dream big, to feel big and to transform how companies and people operate.  

 

The backbone of a body is similar to the infrastructure for a skyscraper to stand tall and a company’s operating model to scale and flex for business growth and retraction. I reached a point in my life when I could no longer scale; I could not flex.  

 

It took years of me searching for answers to unexplainable health challenges that limited my ability to participate in life. I couldn’t do not just the things that give me the greatest joy, but also the basics like opening a jar, mixing cake batter and holding a pen to write a letter. It was through debilitating injuries, the result of me trying to live my best life but in constant pain, that the wheels of my bike could not find up; I could not find up. I lost all sense of balance. I was not in control and I slid to the ground. In the coming weeks and months of recovery, I had nothing but time to come to the life changing realization that I was given the chance to use this downtime constructively. I decided I’d develop my own recovery program starting with understanding what makes us human, how our bodies are innately designed and the unique experiences we may encounter that hinder or propel our potential to move. Through months of study, real time feedback from experts in areas I was studying and practical application under guidance from elite athletes and coaches, I set out rebuilding me – from the ground up. I’ve integrated these learnings into tools and experiences to help others at any stage in their lives to also move more efficiently and with less effort so they can live their best lives doing the things they love. 

 

Let's do this.

Nancy Weidner Pilates Instructor
Nancy Weidner (Group Classes, One-on-One Instruction)
Nancy Weidner is certified in Pilates by the prestigious Kane School in NYC and in health coaching through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. She believes in taking the time to consciously fill your life with nourishing activities, healthy food and supportive people that make you smile. Her goals are to help people feel better about themselves inside and out and to give them the tools to create this success. Through Pilates, Nancy’s clients can achieve self-transformation with mindful movement. They will build total-body strength, flexibility, muscle tone, balance, stamina, and confidence. Nancy’s lifelong passion for fitness and her attentive Pilates instruction help clients find joy and beauty through intentional exercise.After a career in fashion and marketing that took her to New York and London, Nancy returned to her home state of New Jersey where she now lives in Short Hills with her husband and three children.
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CHRISTIE FREEMAN (Prenatal, Postnatal,, Group Classes, One-on-One Instruction)
Christie Freeman, studio owner and director of Project Pilates, first discovered Pilates in college where she received a BFA in dance from California State University, Long Beach. Christie worked part-time in the dance department's physical therapy room, this is where she realized the true benefits of a daily Pilates practice and how much Pilates can help the body. 
 
Christie received her Pilates mat and equipment certification from The Kane School of Core Integration in New York in 2005. Christie has attended additional workshops to continue her Pilates training; Pilates through Pregnancy with Debbi Goodman, MSPT, Pre and Post Natal Specialist Pilates Certification with Carolyne Anthony, is a licensed instructor of Pilates for Buff Bones®, a bone-strengthening program for those with osteoporosis or those seeking to prevent it, Kinesthetic Anatomy and Biomechanics of Motion: Spine/Trunk with Irene Dowd, Relax your Neck – Liberate your Shoulders with Eric Franklin, Hip and Knee injuries with Mark Klion/MD and the FAMI intensive taught at Mount Sinai. She is currently enrolled at Pacific College of Health and Science pursuing a masters degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine (Acupuncture and Herbology).
 
Christie hopes that all will love the way they feel as much as she does after an invigorating pilates session whether it is for fitness, injury prevention, or recovery. Pilates really does work!


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