Six years ago, a yoga-related cervical herniated disc changed my life. On and off bouts with debilitating neck pain left me often laid out in bed with little ability to do even regular activities, like sitting through dinner at a restaurant. Two years ago, I could barely walk from debilitating neck pain and had to quit my job. Today, I feel amazing, fully functional, about to be on my feet for 10 hours cooking Thanksgiving dinner, and I could not be happier. I have the amazing ladies at Pilates Done Differently – rehabilitative pilates extraordinaire Caitlin Kolb, the expert restorative and rehabilitative yoga instructor Leigh Ferrara to thank, along with my incredible physical therapist. I was weeks away from getting spinal fusion surgery, that probably would not have changed my pain levels, and I was immensely frustrated at the lack of help from the most advanced specialists – steroid injections, pain meds, even a trial with botox injections was all just a bandaid. Instead, daily dedication and commitment to the extraordinary work at Pilates Done Differently has led to the best I’ve felt in years. My spine health is not something I take for granted, and the amazing thing is that I keep getting better, well on my way to resuming normal athletic activities like running and biking. I now feel so strong, confident, and powerful, now that I was able to change the course of my life with Pilates Done Differently by my side. If you or anyone you know is struggling with chronic injuries or chronic pain, especially neck or back pain from a spine injury, Pilates Done Differently has got your back! Thank you so much Caitlin Kolb and Leigh Ferrara– you guys are the most talented, incredible, and passionate healers, and I’m so thankful for you today.
Tingzin is a skilled professional that gently urges you to do things that you thought you could not do! I have practiced pilates with her for five years and I am both stronger and more flexible. Tingzin uses a light touch of humor just when you need that extra bit of encouragement. She is also very aware of times when your body is not 100% and she will teach you how to modify an exercise so you get the results you want without hurting yourself. I highly recommend Tingzin as a Plilates instructor!
I had been coming to Pilates Done Differently for several months to work with Islay, when I herniated a disk painting a fence one weekend. I could barely walk or move the sciatic nerve pain was so bad. I was so happy I already had an appointment on the books with her to start working on it. I brought my MRI and the doctor’s report and Islay started in a gentle way to ask all the right questions. Islay is knowledgeable, patient, and a great listener. It’s 2 weeks and 6 appointments after the injury and I almost have full range of motion, and list of things I should and should not do when I am at home.
Long story short, I came in for some super glamour Pilates abs and ended up with a much greater understanding of my body, how it works, and how to use it. It’s crazy that I am a 39 year old man who just found a world of muscles I didn’t even know I had. Thanks Islay and Pilates Done Differently, you are never getting rid of me!
Caitlin Kolb is exceptional. You couldn’t do better for a Pilates instructor. And, after working with her for over four years, I can assure you she is a conscientious, smart, caring and quick-witted individual. I credit her astute teachings with allowing me to pursue the activities I love, including running, after a significant back injury. Caitlin’s technique includes not just physical instruction, but the (nearly uncanny) ability to read one’s motivation, bodily awareness, and (potential) pain level. She uses metaphors to help an untrained individual, such as myself, understand how to move one’s body. Her background in dance and sense of humor help, too. If you aren’t convinced that she can help strengthen you, or rehabilitate you after an injury, then perhaps this will help: My husband’s ex-wife asked where I got my great tush. Before I said something haughty, such as, “I was born with it!”, my husband answered for me, “Pilates. Caitlin.”
Caitlin Kolb has changed my life and the health of my body (this is not an exaggeration). After years of pain and frustration due to scoliosis, I found Caitlin through a referral from my physical therapist. The best advice I’ve ever received! Over the last 5-6 years, my core strength has increased drastically and I understand how to better work in order to avoid injury. When my back does get aggravated due to my physical work, I leave my hour-long session with Caitlin feeling drastically improved and regenerated. I am constantly amazed by her expertise and the benefits I receive from working with her, both physically and mentally.
Caitlin’s knowledge of the body through her years of studying/practicing pilates, years of instruction, and her career as a dancer, is priceless. Caitlin’s thoughtful care for her students is evidenced by her keen ability to gauge what is going on in their bodies. Her listening and observational skills are exceptional.
Pilates Done Differently is a quiet and beautifully appointed space with a small number of teachers/students at any one time. The other teachers, Katherine and Lauren, have always been very warm and inviting towards me as well. They work very closely with Caitlin to create a safe, low-key, and productive environment. Pilates Done Differently’s location is great and parking is always easy unlike many other areas in the city.
Lauren Hurst has been my Pilates instructor for about 2 ½ years now. I give her credit for restoring the joy in my life. She has changed my life for the better, restored my faith in myself, and taught me so many things I can do to improve the quality of my life. I feel stronger, more resilient, less pain, and more prepared to care for myself and maintain my mobility. I’ve learned to recruit muscles I never felt I had before to do tasks now with greater efficiency, no pain, and improved posture. (I gained back a half inch of height I had lost after 6 months of Pilates with Lauren!) Lauren truly has a gift for cueing. Sometimes when I have trouble with a particular movement, just a light brushing of her fingertips along the muscle will enable me to find the movement and carry it out. She employs a very tailored sense of exercise prescription, modification, challenge, and rest when needed. She also understands chronic pain and its implications, and I feel very safe in her instruction. She is always careful to check in with me about my comfort level with each exercise. I have been so impressed by her and the other instructors at Pilates Done Differently that I have referred several of my patients to Pilates Done Differently for individual Pilates. Lauren is remarkably insightful, skillful, talented, knowledgeable, and is also one of the best human beings I know. Pilates Done Differently has a welcoming feel to it. It’s clean, has lots of natural light, bathrooms with ample room to change clothes in if needed, and new equipment. Many thanks to Caitlin Kolb for acting on her inspiration to open this wonderful studio filled with expert, compassionate teachers and healers!!! Infinite thanks to Lauren Hurst for guiding me to my current state of well-being!!!
I highly recommend Caitlin. I started seeing her 10+ years ago to increase my strength and improve my posture. Unfortunately, shortly after beginning I injured my back playing golf. That’s when I realized how lucky I was to be working with Caitlin. She is attuned to body mechanics and has a special interest in rehab. She understands anatomy and alignments and doesn’t let me get away with anything. She explains and demonstrates every move but is never condescending, irritating or intrusive. She especially demonstrates what NOT to do. I completely trust Caitlin as an expert guiding me to work through my weaknesses and build upon my strengths.