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Get a Glimpse into the Beachside Art of Pilates Studio in Playa del Rey

Today we’d like to introduce you to Devi Ohira, manager at Art of Pilates in Playa del Rey.

Devi, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I actually used to be a client at the studio a few years back before I began working here. The studio used to also offer yoga/barre and I would take barre classes nearly everyday. I’m a dancer, so I naturally gravitate towards forms of exercise that strengthen & lengthen & work supporting muscle groups. I also do anything I can to avoid running!

I had peroneal tendonitis in my foot early last year. I wasn’t able to move or exercise much, let alone dance. Pilates totally saved me – I was still able to do Pilates class with the instructors giving me the proper adjustments for certain exercises that wouldn’t put too much pressure on my foot. I believe recovery from my injury was faster because of Pilates, I couldn’t have been more fortunate.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
One of our biggest studio changes was when we stopped offering yoga/barre classes in lieu of creating a stronger, more focused Pilates reformer experience. At the time, we had 2 studios on 2 floors and we decided it would be more impactful for our clients if we kept the larger studio upstairs and remodeled the interior to make it brighter and more inviting for everyone. The transition was tougher than expected in moving the equipment but we were so grateful to our clients for their patience and flexibility during that time. And now our upstairs space is better than ever!

Art of Pilates – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Fitness and exercise can be seasonal and because this is Los Angeles, there are so many Pilates studios. We are constantly making an effort to separate ourselves from other studios, especially within our surrounding area.

We are one block from the beach, so the studio has a very beachy, laid-back vibe, which is the perfect contrast to some of our high-energy classes. The thing I like that we do here is we try to recognize our clients who have been with us since the beginning. Many studios often incentivize new clients, and while we do love that too, we also love to recognize client loyalty since there are many clients who we see 3 times a week or more, and they make the studio feel like family.

In addition to having a family environment, I can’t speak enough to how we truly create Pilates for everyone. We have such a range of clients that come in – former professional athletes to expecting mothers to clients with chronic injuries or conditions learning to rehab and retrain their bodies.

We stay very engaged with our clients and the community. In the past we’ve partnered with Lorna Jane for community events such as “Active Nation Day” as well as hosted studio parties so we can get together with our clients outside of our sweat and fitness attire.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
I can’t necessarily pinpoint a “proudest moment” myself, so I will give mention to one of our main studio instructors, Michelle’s, proudest career moments.

Michelle works with one of our long-time private clients, Mindy, who first came to us with a huge background in competition athletics (gymnastics & softball growing up, more recently CrossFit, running) but unable to perform these activities because of a vertebrae shift (L5 pinching L4). Being able to rehabilitate Mindy’s back through Pilates while strengthening core and overall body toning, it’s been so rewarding to get to a place where she no longer suffers from back pain. She works a physically demanding job so it’s been so important for us to maintain her strength.

Whenever we can retrain clients to walk again, or have mobility in areas that have suffered injury, we’re really happy and grateful that we can improve the quality of a client’s life.

Pricing:

  • New Client Intro 3 Reformer Classes for $60
  • New Client Intro 1 Reformer Private for $50 or 3 Privates for $180
  • Monthly Membership: $200/month up to 3 visits per week!
  • $15 Happy Hour Jumpboard Reformer Class (Fridays @ 4 pm)

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