Shelley Ballestrazze – Owner
Growing up in Boulder, CO, Shelley was very active in sports but struggled constantly with injuries and chronic lower back pain. As the most injured player on her high school basketball team, she now knows the importance of regular stretching and a flexibility program. She tried Pilates in early 2001 as a means to cure her repeated running injuries and to alleviate muscle tightness. After steady practice, she discovered she was able to live pain-free and became an advocate for the Pilates Method. She worked in the corporate world for 20 years and prior to becoming a Pilates instructor, she finished up her corporate career as a computer technician and software trainer.
Going through a very rigorous and comprehensive 650-hours initial training program, she earned her Pilates certification in 2003 through Body Kinetics, under the tutelage of Master Instructor, Carol Appel . After completing her training and internship at Body Kinetics in Mill Valley, CA, she opened her first studio in 2005, Pilates of Marin. Her clientele quickly grew and in 2008, she expanded, doubling in size of her previous studio. In 2009, she relocated to Oregon and in 2010, decided to sell Pilates of Marin to a trusted friend and colleague. She opened NW Core Balance in Tualatin (Portland), Oregon in 2011.
Shelley holds an advanced certification as a Cancer Exercise Specialist from the Cancer Exercise Training Institute. Little did she know when she was obtaining her certification, that soon after she would be diagnosed with breast cancer. After undergoing two surgeries and radiation therapy treatment, Shelley experienced firsthand the physical challenges of overcoming muscle weakness as a result of breast surgery. Her personal experience with breast cancer, combined with her Pilates training, has truly helped her to understand the physical needs of all cancer survivors.
Elizabeth Payne– Pilates Instructor
Elizabeth Payne has practiced Pilates for over 14 years. She enjoys the active strengthening and stretching of Pilates and loves the connection of mind and body. She developed a deeper appreciation and respect of Pilates when it helped her recover from a difficult pregnancy and knee injury. While rehabilitating she discovered that her back and hip pain, which had often sent her to the doctor, was also improving.
Elizabeth believes the mind and body connection that Pilates teaches, gives benefits to the young and old alike. For kids, understanding how their bodies work functionally with Pilates will build an awareness for a lifetime. Adults can lose functional movement from bad habits, injuries and compensation issues. Pilates can bring muscles back into balance, and lessen the chance of future injuries.
Stephanie Lanckton– Pilates Instructor
Stephanie imparts a focused approach to teaching pilates that is gentle, perceptive and dynamic. She believes in the importance of correct alignment, proper movement initiation, and the integration of breath-supported movement. She recognizes that all bodies have their own intelligence – the challenge is for us to discover ways to listen, and then respond consciously. Stephanie is committed to helping her clients awaken their body, and develop a deeper connection between mind and body-intuition ensuring that every lesson is enlivening and transformative. Ultimately, her goal is to guide her clients to execute movement efficiently, increase body awareness, core-strength, flexibility, and to develop a balanced, strong yet supple body.
Stephanie’s dedication to learning has shaped a successful teaching philosophy that empowers individuals to live vibrant, healthy lives. She is a certified pilates instructor from The PhysicalMind Institute, and a certified TRX Suspension System trainer. Stephanie has extensive continuing education, including Pre and Post-natal Training, Gait Analysis, Shoulder Girdle and Scoliosis Postural Analysis Intake, Standing Pilates, Advanced Apparatus Exercises and Archival Reformer Exercises. She has over a decade of experience teaching in Portland and New York City along side the most sought after instructors in the pilates and fitness industry. At the 1st Annual World Games Extravaganza in NYC she was acknowledged for her pilates technique and was awarded first place for precision, balance and control on the wunda chair and reformer.
Additionally, Stephanie is a nationally recognized choreographer and dancer, who is active in the dance world on both coasts. She has a BA in Dance from Point Park College, and is an alumnus of Interlochen Arts Academy. As a dancer and choreographer she is intimately aware of the integration of mind, body, and spirit. Her training and passion for movement and pilates instruction is available to everyone.