The Committee

PAA Committee Members

President

President

Senior Pilates practitioner at North Shore Physio and Pilates and Movement Collective

SHARAN SIMMONS

In the role of President Sharan is proud to have the opportunity to serve our members and to lead the growing organisation in the recognition of Pilates and PAA members within the community, allied health and fitness sectors. The PAA Strategic Direction – 2019 and Beyond will frame the next year’s priorities and Sharan will work with the committee to implement the key initiatives.

Sharan comes to the role of President with a diverse background in both education and professional experience, as a Pilates teacher, studio owner, studio manager, student and graduate mentor, committee member and executive, education officer and conference organiser.

A Principal level member of PAA, Sharan has been teaching for over 15 years. Sharan has been serving on the committee for 6 years, coming in as Education officer and later Vice President. She has worked on the PAA conference since 2011 and has become increasingly involved and is currently Conference organiser for 2019.

Sharan was first introduced to Pilates as a client in San Francisco while living there. She initially trained with Pilates ITC while in Singapore. Completing comprehensive Pilates training in 2003, Sharan continued to study as new accredited qualifications were introduced. She holds the Advanced Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction and is committed to ongoing training and professional development. Sharan has also studied with Polestar Pilates and Authentic Pilates Education International, with specialist certification in pre and post natal Pilates, osteoporosis, menopause and arthritis. Sharan loves any opportunity to combine two of her passions, travel and training.

Sharan has worked in Sydney for many years since returning from the US and Asia in 2007. She works with a diverse client base within the Pilates studio and Allied Health practice. She continues to be inspired by the power of the Pilates Method to uplift and transform people. She encourages and challenges clients to strive to reach a new level of control and understanding of their body and its potential.

Vice President

Vice President

Christine Lavelle Pilates, Somersby, NSW

CHRIS LAVELLE

Bachelor of Applied Science – UWS, Australia
Certified Pilates Instructor (Romana’s Pilates Level IV)
Principal Trainer – Pilates Alliance of Australasia
Certified DNS Exercise Practitioner – Rehabilitation Prague School
Certificate IV in Workplace Training and Assessment

Chris began her Pilates Instructor training with Cynthia Lochard in Sydney, Australia  in 1996. She has been a certified Pilates Instructor since 1998 (Pilates Inc., Romana’s Pilates). By historical lineage, she is classified as a 2nd generation Pilates Instructor, having completed her training seminars and examinations with Pilates Elder, Romana Kryzanowska. Chris taught alongside Romana in her training centre in New York during 1998/1999 and continued to study with her until she retired.

Chris has managed and taught in her own Pilates studio from 1999 to date. She was awarded teacher trainer status with Romana’s Pilates in 2004. Chris commenced studying Dynamic Neuromuscular Stabilisation (DNS) with The Rehabilitation Prague School in 2014 and became a certified DNS exercise instructor in 2016.

Prior to taking up Pilates Chris had an academic career in Systems Science, graduating with Honours and the University Medal from The University of Western Sydney (Hawkesbury). She worked on the faculty of Silliman University (Philippines) for two years and then returned to the University of Western Sydney where she worked as a lecturer and in consultancy/research for several years. Although seemingly unrelated to Pilates, the paradigms of systems science and experiential learning that defined Chris’s academic career, set her in pursuit of a balanced and conscious approach to her own evolution.

After leaving academia, Chris studied human movement and began performing with amateur dance group “Bricolage”, under the tutelage of modern Dancer, Annetta Luce. She also studied with Mind Body Centering practitioner, Alice Cummins.  In 1995, she was recommended to Cynthia Lochard’s Pilates studio after an dancing injury. Chris attended Cynthia’s studio three times a week for private classes and was very excited about this strange new movement vocabulary and the strength that quickly developed in her hyper-mobile body! Chris continued her classes for over a year before beginning an apprenticeship training programme with Cynthia.

In 1996 Chris participated in the first Australian workshop run by Pilates elder Romana Krysanowska. After a two year apprenticeship with Cynthia (which included seminars with Romana and Sari Mejia Santos in Australia), she travelled to New York and spent over 7 months working alongside Romana and Sari in Drago’s gymnasium, New York. During this time she also worked at Brooke Siler’s studio “Re-Ab” and at a Physical Therapy studio, teaching Pilates as an adjunct to their rehabilitation programs. Chris returned to Australia in 1999 and opened her own Pilates Studio.

Throughout her Pilates career, Chris has continued to explore Joseph Pilates deeper ideals of a balanced body/mind/spirit. She maintains a strong belief that instructors need to nurture this delicate balance with independent research, disciplined personal practice and an ongoing commitment to continuing education. Chris has written numerous unpublished papers on specific aspects of Pilates and runs regular continuing education workshops for Pilates instructors.

Chris comes to the PAA committee with a desire to:

1) Enhance the learning and research capabilities of instructors through continuing education, and

2) Encourage awareness and strong client based relationships between Pilates instructors and Allied Health practitioners.

Treasurer and Public Officer

Treasurer and Public Officer

Founder & Owner of Pilates Works, Lower North Shore, Sydney.

ROBYN RIX

Robyn is the founder and owner of Pilates Works on the lower North Shore of Sydney. She holds a Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction (91491NSW) and is a second generation Pilates instructor and trainer, having graduated from the Pilates Master Mentor Program conducted by Lolita San Miguel in Florida.

Previous to becoming a Pilates instructor, Robyn worked in the financial services industry as an actuary, gaining broad experience in many areas of business management. Then, with a complete change of direction, she completed a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture.

Always interested in health & fitness, she was reluctant to pursue a career in this area for fear that it would turn something she loved into a chore. But, due to a series of (un)fortunate events, her love of the Pilates method turned into a career.

Robyn is hoping that her financial background will prove an asset to the PAA in her role as Treasurer.

Her dream is to see the Pilates industry as a professional, cohesive and supportive community that brings the joys and benefits of Pilates to as many people as possible.

Secretary

Secretary

Director of The Pilates Centre, Canberra

FELICIA DARBYSHIRE-PIRIE

Ad Dip Pilates Method, B.A Sports Science, Dip Massage, Cert4 TAA.

Felicia has been instructing Pilates since 2007 and started a Canberra based studio in 2009 which is also a host site for students during their Pilates certification process.

Felicia’s professional background is originally from massage and fitness. Felicia has been practicing Pilates for over 18 years and it was this interest that lead her to start her courses in massage therapy and fitness. After 8 years in the Australian Public Service, she left the Public Service to follow the interest in movement. During her tertiary studies she found a PAA accredited course in the ACT and started her Pilates qualifications during her final year of university.

Felicia is very passionate about Pilates instruction and the Pilates industry. She is keen to assist in the continuing professional growth of the industry and its instructors through education, accreditation and qualifications.

Felicia believes it is important that all of us play a role in supporting, strengthening and promoting this great industry and the body that supports us – the Pilates Alliance.

Ordinary Councilor

Ordinary Councilor

Director Pilates Tasmania and owner Bodhi Method Pilates and Wellness Studio, TAS.

ELLA WONG

Ella has been practicing Pilates since 2004 and ever since, has had the highest respect and passion for its philosophy, functionality and results.

Having completed a Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction (91491NSW), Ella has transitioned from the corporate world to establish a career working as a Pilates instructor at Pilates Tasmania, as well as developing a home based Pilates studio business, Bodhi Method, in Hobart, Tasmania.

With a postgraduate degree in Marketing, and a bachelor degree in Journalism from the University of Tasmania, and over eight years of sound practical and professional experience in marketing, media, advertising agencies and public relations sectors, both nationally and internationally in Shanghai China, Ella sees holding a position on the PAA general committee as an ideal opportunity to apply her skills to assist in promoting and marketing the services of the PAA to the Pilates industry, health professionals, and the general public.

Furthermore, Ella is passionate about enhancing the image, knowledge and understanding of the Pilates Method in the broader community and ensuring that the integrity of instructors and high level quality training is maintained for all practitioners.

Ordinary Councilor

Ordinary Councilor

Pilates Instructor, Anne-Maree Jones Studio

KAREN GOH

Karen has been practicing Pilates since 2011 and gained her Diploma of Professional Pilates Instruction in 2017. In the past she worked as a computer analyst/programmer and then in administration and disability support.

Karen believes the strategic directions set out by the PAA are all important and is eager to promote the Pilates Method within the community generally and to specific populations and health professionals. She is keen to work with the PAA to support further learning, evaluation and research into the effectiveness of the Pilates Method and is particularly interested in creating media resources suitable for members and studios to use.

Over the years Karen has joined and contributed to various university, school (as a parent), church and club committees. Together with experience in managing a small office and reception work this has strengthened her organisational and communication skills and ability to work under pressure.

Ordinary Councilor

Ordinary Councilor

Faculty Member for Tensegrity Training

BRUCE HILDEBRAND

Bruce has always loved sport and movement, and his interests led him to a Sports Science degree (RMIT Melbourne) during which time he discovered Pilates in 1996.  He first trained in Pilates in the UK in 1999, working with the Body Control Pilates UK (BCP-UK) group for 3 years in central London. In 2003 he was invited to manage the first BCP-UK studio in Scotland, where he worked with members of UK rock band Radiohead and members of the cast of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.

Bruce has studied with classical Pilates trainers Siri Dharma, Los Angeles and Michael Miller, Colorado. From 2002, he studied with world-renowned movement and imagery expert Eric Franklin, becoming the pioneer Franklin Method® Educator in Australia in the early 2000s.

Bruce was the co-founder of Balance & Control Pilates Studio in Melbourne in 2004, growing the business to three studios across Melbourne and a team of 20 dedicated Pilates and Physiotherapy practitioners. He also served as consultant Strength Coach to the Australian Ballet School from 2005-2011, as well as training a range of elite level athletes from AFL, Sailing, Athletics, Soccer, Netball, Ballet and Music.

Bruce played state-level Australian Rules football in both Victoria and WA. He has trekked Peru’s Inca Trail to Macchu Pichu, sailed a yacht across the Atlantic Ocean, and ran the 2002 London Marathon.

Bruce is a PAA Principal Trainer and a Faculty Member for Tensegrity Training delivering nationally accredited Pilates Instructor training throughout Victoria. Bruce is keen to help improve the economic return for Pilates teachers and has a special interest in creating a united force for Pilates in Australia.

Ordinary Councilor

Ordinary Councilor

Owner & Director of Mr Pilates

DARREN VIZER

First studying Pilates with the late Megan Williams in 1995, Darren holds the Advanced Diploma in Pilates and maintains a weekly classical Pilates practice. Established in 2006 Darren’s studio, Mr Pilates, is currently situated in Port Melbourne and is affiliated with National Pilates Training in Melbourne. Darren is a Principal Trainer level PAA member.

Darren’s movement background began with equestrian, show jumping, gymnastics, trampolining and tumbling, competing in the Queensland team where he became a national champion. He undertook dance training at QUT Brisbane, The Laban Centre for Contemporary Dance, London, and the University of Melbourne where he gained a Master’s Degree in Choreography.  He also trained as a method actor at Ensemble Acting Studios in Sydney, Darren has a 20 year professional performance career and established his own Theatre and Dance company, Devize Co.

Most of the time Darren teaches Contemporary Pilates heavily influenced by classical; he enjoys teaching Pilates as the ‘Full Body of Work’, sharing his knowledge and giving the whole, rich experience of Pilates.

His goal for the PAA organisation is to continually improve the industry teaching standards and keep encouraging men to try Pilates.

Member Relations Officer

Member Relations Officer

CAROLYN ANTONY

Carolyn Antony is the Member Relations Officer for the PAA. Her previous professional careers include:

  • State Sales Manager in NSW & ACT for Hotel Serviced Apartment Group; Director at Peter Rand Group Leading Conference Brokers and Consultants (UK); Regional Sales Manager with Ladbroke Hotels/Hilton Hotels and Advertising Manager Oxford Review Publications.
  • Apart from her considerable administration skills, Carolyn also has a sound background in sales and marketing.
  • Carolyn’s love of travel led to her developing and producing the ‘Talking of Sydney’ Tours – audio guided walking tours of Sydney.
  • She has written a light-hearted book based on her travel diaries compiled during an eighteen-month world trip visiting twelve countries.
  • Carolyn also has experience in free-sheet advertising, in product demonstration, in perfumery, in the hotel and tourism industry – including a period spent working in Spain – and as a dolphin trainer!

Carolyn has worked for the PAA since 2006. Her goal for the PAA is to ensure that Member Relations supports the PAA’s growing professional Pilates industry membership and its talented and hard-working committee members.


Systems Officer

Systems Officer

KERRY HAYWOOD

Kerry’s role as System Support Officer focuses on some of the more technical aspects of the organisation, helping the PAA to operate more efficiently and effectively as it grows. Her areas of responsibility include:

  • Support of the online membership database: helping members with technical issues, assisting with online membership profiles.
  • Website updates and maintenance including Studio/Instructor Search facility and forthcoming workshop listings.
  • Bookkeeping, accounts and reporting.
  • Newsletter production and email advertising blasts.

Kerry’s background is a unique blend of management and customer service, with a liberal sprinkling of technical skills. Some of her previous roles include Cinema Manager for Odeon (UK) and Operations/Office Manager for corporate HR and the digital graphics training sectors in Sydney.

Her support of members is fueled by a love of problem solving and making things work, her goal is for all association with the PAA to be a smooth and enjoyable experience.