Ellie Herman Studios

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3929 Grand Ave Oakland, CA 94610


21 years ago, Ellie Herman worked as a professional dancer and choreographer, running her own company in San Francisco. She loved her work, but she had bills to pay. So, naturally, she took on a side job; she became the professional wrestler known as "Ruth Less." Nearly as soon as she began tossing fellow wrestlers about, she incurred a serious knee injury that threatened to end both of her careers. Luckily for her, the nearby St. Francis Hospital of Dance Medicine offered surgery-free rehabilitation through Pilates. Ellie did the workouts for months, and returned to her company an even better dancer than she'd been before her injuries. Later, as a Masters Student at NYU, Pilates once again helped her recover from hip pain. She discovered an ability to innovate within the bounds of Pilates, and resolved to become a teacher.

She opened the aptly named Ellie Herman Studio, where she teaches to this day. True to her inspiration, she continues to use Pilates as a basis on which to innovate more and better forms of corrective movement. So far, she's written eight books on the subject. She invented her own piece of equipment, the Pilates Springboard, which compresses the size and cost of the more traditional Pilates wall unit. She also developed a blend of Pilates and gait training, to help people stave of injury by becoming conscious of the way they move their legs in every day life, which helps to prevent things such as rolling ankles or randomly kicking strangers.