[COL] Pilates Mat Challenge

This class is taught by:

Abril Istre

Abril is a Certified AFAA Group Exercise Instructor. She has over 8 years of experience leading classes of different levels and helping participants achieve their fitness goals. She found Yoga and Pilates in 2004 and has been practicing since then. Through personal injuries she has learned to honor her body, and understands the importance of a mindful and consistent practice. Abril completed the 200hr Yoga Alliance RYT in 2012 and currently teaches Reformer, Pilates Mat, Yoga and Les Mills programs.

Chris Ruane

Chris is a clinical Hanna Somatic Educator and Practitioner, Maryland Certified Massage Therapist, 500 hour yoga and Pilates teacher with over 17 years experience and is currently pursuing a Masters Pilates certification. She considers herself a mood movement detective who's focus is to help you achieve full range of movement in a pain-free body. Her background as an Irish dancer, athlete and musician give her personal insight into the mechanisms of chronic pain and her education and neurophysiology and hands on experience guide her work in creating custom tailored movement and Bodyworks sessions to help you move throughout life pain-free.

Michele Brodsky

Michele is the Education Director at Coreworks and has been a certified personal trainer since 1993. As a personal trainer, Michele works with doctors and physical therapists helping to rehabilitate patients.  In addition, Michele runs the dance conditioning program at Coreworks.  Michele teaches all formats of Pilates classes as well as runs the Pilates teacher training program through Balanced Body.  

Sara Raymond

Sara is the Program Director at Coreworks. Sara is a Comprehensively Certified Pilates instructor and Master Instructor with Balanced Body and has also trained with STOTT Pilates, PHI Pilates and the Pilates Coach. In addition to Pilates, Sara is a CoreAlign Master Instructor and runs the Coreworks Mentor Program.  She is a 200 hour Registered Yoga Teacher and a certified Booty Barre instructor.  Sara has been practicing and studying Pilates and yoga since 2000.  Sara brings the variety in her education background to her teaching style and enjoys working with all levels of students. Additionally, Sara works with individuals and small groups to make changes and improve lives as a hypnosis practitioner and meditation teacher.

Joanna Gilmer

Joanna began her journey with Pilates in 2011 in Warsaw,Poland. On the first day of practice, her teacher started class by quoting Joseph Pilates “In 10 sessions you’ll feel the difference, in 20 you’ll see the difference, and in 30 you’ll have a new body”. As a “skeptical” beginner, Joanna was amazed that everything that was said about Pilates became true. As a result, she has become a committed practitioner of Pilates, and in convincing others that thanks to this method, not only the body movement and strength can improve, but you will also gain greater balance and energy. You simply start feeling better!. Joanna is Comprehensively Certified by Balanced Body and teaches Mat, Reformer, Tower and Chair. In addition to practicing Pilates, Joanna also enjoys running, biking,cooking, reading, and traveling with her husband and spending time with her family.

Megan Bruno

Megan began integrating Pilates into her fitness routine during her third pregnancy. The physical and emotional benefits of her practice were transformative and she has been a believer in the power of Pilates ever since. Megan is Comprehensively Certified by Balanced Body and teaches Mat, Reformer, Tower and Chair. Megan teaches at several studios and has piloted an Introduction to Pilates program as part of an employee Wellness Program at a local private school. Megan is also a mother of three, runner, photographer and active community volunteer. She credits Pilates for keeping her physical and mental well-being in balance and strives to share the benefits of Pilates with as many people as possible.

Doreen Sheppard

Doreen Sheppard has over fourteen years teaching experience in the fitness industry. She enjoys working with clients one-on-one or in a group setting. She is certified in person training (NASM and ACE), group fitness (AFAA) Resist-A-Ball, and Spinning. She is currently pursuing a Balanced Body Reformer certification. Doreen enjoys running and road cycling in her spare time.

Jennifer Randle

Jennifer found her practice when she suffered a serious back injury that required emergency surgery. During her recovery, she felt blessed and energized by the healing benefits of daily meditation and yoga which were critical to her physical and mental improvement. She began teaching in 2007 and in 2013 she completed her 500 hour advanced certification at the Yoga Center of Columbia.

In addition to yoga, Jen holds Balanced Bodies certifications in Pilates Mat I and II, and a Moms in Motion certification in Prenatal Fitness. Jen is passionate about offering modified yoga and Pilates to those who may have lost core power or flexibility due to pregnancy or other special conditions. Holding a postgraduate degree in Modern Studies, she also enjoys incorporating the modern relevance of yogic texts and principles into her classes.

Jennifer is devoted to creating a safe and experiential environment for her clients that honors awareness of the breath during moments of movement and stillness. She encourages an appreciation for the importance of alignment through core strength, balance and flexibility — both on the mat and in life. A lifelong student, Jennifer relishes time with her teachers and enjoys her journey as she refines and evolves her practice and teaching.

Fran Berndt

Founder and instructor, her love for Pilates is what made Coreworks possible. Fran holds a comprehensive Pilates certification from Balanced Body, and has completed all levels of training on the CoreAlign unit. Additional training was completed through Stott Pilates and PHI Pilates. Fran is also a Licensed Buff Bones Instructor. Fran has been practicing and studying Pilates since 2000.
Fran opened the first Coreworks Pilates Studio in 2003 in order to provide a non-threatening and warm environment for students to exercise and pursue their wellness goals. Fran believes 100 percent in the importance of the mind body and breath connection for increased ease of movement and quality of life.


[COL] Held at the Columbia Studio.  Pilates is a system of movement that focuses on engaging the mind with the body to create exercises that involve the whole body. Every exercise is performed with attention to breath, proper form and efficient movement patterns. Pilates strengthens the core, improves balance, increases coordination and reduces stress. The mat repertoire will challenge you using body weight and small props. With small class sizes, this mixed level class will offer variations and modifications to suit all levels.

Upcoming classes:

  • Mon Sep 24 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Abril Istre
  • Tue Sep 25 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm with Chris Ruane
  • Wed Sep 26 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm with Michele Brodsky
  • Thu Sep 27 9:30 am - 10:30 am with Sara Raymond
  • Thu Sep 27 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm with Michele Brodsky
  • Fri Sep 28 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Joanna Gilmer
  • Sat Sep 29 10:30 am - 11:30 am with Megan Bruno
  • Sun Sep 30 8:30 am - 9:30 am with Doreen Sheppard
  • Mon Oct 01 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Abril Istre
  • Tue Oct 02 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Jennifer Randle
  • Tue Oct 02 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm with Chris Ruane
  • Wed Oct 03 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm with Michele Brodsky
  • Thu Oct 04 9:30 am - 10:30 am with Sara Raymond
  • Thu Oct 04 5:30 pm - 6:30 pm with Michele Brodsky
  • Fri Oct 05 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Joanna Gilmer
  • Sat Oct 06 10:30 am - 11:30 am with Megan Bruno
  • Sun Oct 07 8:30 am - 9:30 am with Fran Berndt
  • Mon Oct 08 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Abril Istre
  • Tue Oct 09 11:30 am - 12:30 pm with Jennifer Randle
  • Tue Oct 09 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm with Chris Ruane