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Meet June Kahn of Center Your Body Pilates in Louisville

Today we’d like to introduce you to June Kahn.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
My story begins at the age of 3 when my Mom enrolled me in my first dance class. It was love at first sight and I never looked back. I spent 18 years of my life in and out of dance classes in my youth and teens until college – when my Mom become very ill & I needed to help with raising my two younger brothers as she was not able to. While I wanted to go away to college, it was necessary to remain close to home to help out at home as my brothers were 7 – 10 years younger than me and my Dad had to work 24 – 7 to make ends meet. I went to a local college, married young, and when my first born arrived I decided to get back into the dance world. This was the very early 80’s when the Fitness Industry was in its infancy.

I was 15 years old when I found Pilates. It was a mandatory part of my dance training growing up in New York, but at that point in my life I didn’t understand its value. That was 46 years ago. In 1982 I found fitness and “aerobics” – and got hooked on the craze. It was the era of “more is better” so I did everything I could to be active: running, skiing, teaching 10 classes per week and even becoming a ski instructor & fitness educator – all while raising two small boys.

In 1984, I thought I was invincible; there wasn’t anything I couldn’t or wouldn’t do…and I was still dancing. And then one day during a ski session, while training to take my skiing PSIA certification I took a fall…one that ended up with surgery to correct & replace the ACL & PCL cruciate ligaments in my knee. It was at that moment, during my first physical therapy session, that I realized the value of Pilates. All that core, strength, flexibility and mind body training got me through it and I realized just how important Pilates as a foundation program was to my recovery. It inspired me so much that in the mid 1990’s I decided that I wanted to devote myself to this amazing and proven discipline. I spent several years traveling back and forth to NY training with the best-of-the-best to perfect my skills in Pilates.

Upon completion, I used this new-found knowledge to bridge the gap between fitness and Pilates and a new career was born for me: Educating fitness professionals on the importance of fusing Pilates with the Fitness Industry. This became my passion. In 1989 I opened up an aerobic studio when Aerobics was at its height. It became a family affair – & Bodyworks & Kid’s Body Shop was born in West St Louis County, Missouri where we had moved to in 1985. We received incredible local recognition as we created “Family Fitness” with two studios, one for Adults and one for Kids and on Friday evenings, we merged the classes so kids could work out with their parents. My boys were a huge part of this, and they were 7 & 9 years old at the time! As our popularity grew, my partner and I developed programming to teach other fitness professionals on how to bring this concept to their area. My boys, Jonathan & Joshua traveled & presented with us so that this became a family affair. Movement was always an integral part of my family’s life. This decade proved to be the turning point for what was to follow.

Fast-forward to 1998. My career was going well. Life was going good….so I thought. A dear friend noticed a dark mole on my back and suggested I had it checked. That doctor visit turned out to be a 4.75 on a scale of 1-5 for Melanoma. Luckily, surgery allowed for removal of the cancer but all the lymph nodes on my left side had to be removed. Further treatment was not necessary, but it was Pilates that allowed me to heal and recover quickly from the surgery. And I was able to get my life back on track.

My career escalated in the fitness industry with my emphasis on fusing Pilates & Fitness. I was a member of the Reebok™ International Master Training Team, a highly acclaimed organization that created, developed and delivered sound Fitness Education Training for Fitness Professionals. There were 40 of us from around the world. And I had the wonderful opportunity to travel the world teaching Fitness Professionals quality programming backed by extensive research. I helped develop Fitness & Pilates Programming for the Fitness Industry and was highlighted to speak at many national and International Fitness conventions. In 2005 I was a published author (co-author) with Human Kinetics, with the release of the Fitness Book “Morning Cardio Workouts”. In 2010, I was named the IDEA World Fitness Instructor of the Year, a highly coveted prestigious award that to this day is highly recognized and respected.

In 2011, a normal yearly visit to the doctor again turned my world upside down. I was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Follicular Lymphoma, and the cancer had spread throughout the front of my torso and neck and along my spinal column, and two years of Chemotherapy followed. This was a life changer. But despite the nausea and the lack of energy, I refused to let it get the best of me. I continuing to work with my clients, teaching Pilates classes, educating fitness & Pilate’s professionals and moving my body every day. That pulled me through. I found the energy and drive to continue to bike, ski, snowshoe, and dance & even climb a 14’er. Pilates was my savior! I refused to let anything hold me back, maintaining my motivation and passion for life-through-movement & support of family, friends & clients – I never looked back. There is no doubt that “movement” healed and inspired me. And my career continued to thrive.

While I continued my world travel educating Fitness & Pilates professionals, I met my current husband and we wed in 2015. I moved to his charming town of Louisville CO – and in 2016 a unique thing happened – an opportunity arose for me to purchase an existing small Pilates studio in downtown Louisville. It took only one visit to realize this was “my happy space”. This is where I knew I would be able to change people’s lives through movement as well as connect like people together in an effort to improve their wellbeing and vitality. I now also have a ‘home base’ to offer FREE community events as well as offer education to those who wish to find or pursue a career in fitness and/or Pilates. Center Your Body Pilates is a full service intimate boutique Pilates Studio offering small Pilates Group Classes, Private Sessions, Pilates Barre Fusion Classes, TRX & Pilates Rehab Sessions. Our Rehab sessions are referred by Orthopedic Surgeons, Physical Therapists, and Obstetric & Gynecologists & Wellness Clinics to allow their patients to continue with their healing process.

Today I am cancer free. I have four beautiful grandkids whom I adore & who are all extremely active. In addition, I am now trained as a Cancer Exercise Specialist and have had the opportunity to write the Pilates Program for The Cancer Exercise Training Institute.

When I found Pilates, something beautiful happened. It continues to allow me to remain youthful and active and continue to do what I love: Teach and inspire the world to move. I love what I do. It’s what moves me & keeps my heart fulfilled.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Not always, my aerobic studio I opened in 1989 was only open for a year. Small studios were not the norm, big box clubs were becoming more popular. While we did well, our space was expensive. We had to close our doors, however, not the business. We had to re-invent ourselves. We closed our space and merged with a big box club (World Gym) and took our members there. Then expanded to corporations and universities even a JCC and became more of a Fitness/Pilates Management company with over 40 Fitness Professionals under us that we contracted out to all the different facilities. And I continued my travel and appearances at conferences to bring awareness to the importance of Fitness & Pilates education.

In 2006 – 2008 the fitness industry took a dive as did the rest of the economy and I had to constantly re-invent myself and my business to change with the times. I had to take a full time position with Lifetime Fitness as Director of Pilates to help make ends meet as Health Insurance was quite expensive. It was a lifesaver for me for 5 years and assisted me maintaining my standing in the industry.

My health was a set back as well, which is outlined in my previous text. Cancer was not my best friend ….

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Center Your Body Pilates – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Center Your Body Pilates is an award winning boutique studio that is committed to changing people’s lives through movement. Pilates is a proven method of movement that moves the body the way the body was intended to move, feels good, and is for EVERY body. We specialize in making people feel good about themselves, empowering them with the ability to challenge themselves to recognize that they are stronger than they believe they are. We offer high quality instruction with highly certified Pilate’s instructors, some of which are internationally recognized for what they do. Our classes are state of the art Pilates Group Apparatus Sessions (including TRX), Private Sessions, and Specialty Sessions 7 days per week. We offer a FREE 30 minute session to anyone as well as FREE 30 minutes on their birthday we are confident once a session is experienced, they will realize just how incredible Pilates can be.

Our emphasis is on their experience, making sure every session is a successful one and that when they walk out that door, they are anxious to return because of how we make them feel about themselves.

I am quite proud that in a two year time frame we have been awarded Best of East Boulder Louisville 2 years in a row and that is only possible by our members who vote for us. We have created a community – one in which everyone cares for one another. I love how I see relationships develop between members and how strangers become friends, always looking out for one another.

I am most proud of how we have aligned ourselves with the Medical Community and how they recognize our expertise enough that they refer their patients to us. In addition, I cherish the relationships we have created with the local businesses around us that many refer business to us.

In addition, we offer FREE Community events that offer lectures on Healthy Lifestyle, Pilates in the Park and special well – known guests during the year. It is our mission to ‘give back ‘ to our community as that is so important to us.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
We have renewed our lease – for three years minimum so that’s a great start! Adding some new equipment this summer, so we are excited about that! Looking to continue with our current programming however, adding some new specialty programming as well as looking into offering online classes as well. We will certainly continue with our Community Events especially our annual Pilates in the Park in honor of Pilates Day each May in an effort to raise funds to #BEATCANCER in our lifetime. Our 3rd annual event was held last Saturday and we look forward to next year’s & making this an ongoing; local community event.

Pricing:

  • First Class is always FREE! FREE 30 minute DEMO always available
  • Single Class Fees are $30.00 Package pricing available for 5, 10 & 20 sessions that offer significant discounts.
  • Private session prices = $80 – $100 depending on staff
  • Pilates Rehab 30 minute sessions – $45 – discounts available for multiple session packages

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: VoyageDenver is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

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