Shelley Ballestrazze – Owner/Instructor
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.
As a breast cancer survivor, Shelley works extensively with individuals post-cancer treatment. 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.
When not teaching Pilates, Shelley enjoys mountain biking, running, snowshoeing, and spending time with her husband and two dogs.
Stephanie Lanckton– 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.
Jamie Minkus– Instructor
As a dancer, capoeirista, and former gymnast, Jamie has always been interested in understanding how the body moves through time and space. Her BASI Pilates training is a natural extension of that knowledge. Being an athlete who has experienced injuries, Jamie has embraced the ability to rehabilitate and strengthen the body to prevent future injury through Pilates. Her goal is to help people from all walks of life connect with their bodies through movement and breath, while developing a healthy sense of self and finding their inner strength.
Jamie’s classes are playful, challenging, and informative. She wants to arm her clients with knowledge so they may carry information out of the studio and onto the road of life.
Jen Lynagh– Instructor
Health and exercise have always been an essential part of Jen’s life, who in the past has participated in dance, yoga and triathlons. Jen first became a Pilates student three years ago when, trying to recover from a painful and reoccurring lower back problem, she was introduced to mat classes and found that physically it spoke to her in a very different way. Intrigued by the discipline and mind/body connection, a regular practice led to a rigorous Pilates Comprehensive Teacher Training Program through the Body Arts and Science International (BASI) which she completed in 2013. The BASI program is anchored in anatomy and physiology with a strong emphasis on breathing and the aesthetic of movement. Pilates has become a daily practice, the benefits of which Jen is excited to share with a wide range of people.