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Meet Rachel Rankin of Forever Young Pilates in North Hollywood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rachel Rankin.

Rachel, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
When I originally moved to Los Angeles in 2005, I had a passion for music industry and aspired to be a savvy festival organizer or hip A&R. Being that the music industry was at its worst though, I knew I needed a degree that could translate into greener pastures. As I was working to finish my Communications degree, I decided to get my Pilates certification as a plan b. Good thing I did.

I first started Pilates as an aspiring dancer in my teens, but it wasn’t until I experienced muscle imbalances from scoliosis as an adult, that I understood the power of Pilates. Studying under a 2nd generation protégé of Joseph Pilates, Risa Sheppard, I was certified to teach classical Pilates in 2011.

I have always been an entrepreneur. The idea never even occurred to me to work for a studio. I signed the lease to a loft in North Hollywood a few days after getting certified and bought one reformer. It was called Rachel’s Personal Pilates and I exclusively did privates. That was six years ago. Now, 2017, I have a fully equipped studio called Forever Young Pilates with five reformers, 2 towers, and 2 Wunda chairs. We are in a lovely commercial space not very far from where my first tiny loft was.

I truly believe that people are meant to do certain things. Even though music was my passion at first, my life would be unimaginable without my clients. Most of them have been with me since the beginning and I am so thankful for each one of them.

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?
It definitely was not a smooth road. Financially, Pilates is difficult to profit from, as there is vast competition and the overhead is incredibly expensive. This forces me to stay on top of the trends and constantly challenge my clients. The struggle to find the perfect studio was also challenging, as construction, parking, and lack of space issues forced me to find better places.

Please tell us about Forever Young Pilates.
Forever Young Pilates specializes in small group and private instruction. Although most of my clients are privates, I offer group classes that host a max of five people. I am known for my ability to work with injuries and like to build a routine suitable for someone post-physical therapy. I also work with pre-natal and post-natal women who want to protect their baby and stay healthy while pregnant.

As a Pilates Method Alliance certified instructor, I am always increasing my fitness and health knowledge by attending conferences, workshops, and lectures. However, my main interest, if you could call it that, is back pain. I enjoy learning about how to manage pain stemming from herniated discs/ scoliosis/ stenosis/ osteoporosis using the Pilates method.

Do you look back particularly fondly on any memories from childhood?
One of my favorite memories from childhood was the time I cut my little sister’s hair. The poor thing trusted me to give her a layered shoulder length Mary-Kate and Ashley cut. I was probably nine and my sister was five, I had obviously no experience, but that was not a problem in her eyes. I washed her hair in the sink and chatted about life like they do at the hair salon in the mall. Then I combed it and cut it, and then kept cutting until she had a bowl cut to her ears. Needless to say, she won’t let me cut her hair anymore.

Pricing:

  • 1st Private $60
  • 1st Package of 10 Reformer $150
  • 1st Small Group $15

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