Absolute Pilates’s instructors are far from old-school. Though they each boast extensive training in traditional Pilates—and teach classic mat classes—they focus largely on incorporating modern equipment into the ancient practice. Pilates Reformers, Towers, chairs, and even the barre are used during classes, often in combination with each other to optimize workouts and results. The equipment helps students of all levels maintain their balance and target dormant muscles, transforming standard Pilates into a more effective workout. But teachers still maintain the welcoming, personal environment long attributed to Pilates studios and grandma’s doomsday bunker.
Mark Sandler and Carrie Gaynor—co-directors of Absolute Yoga & Wellness—teach yoga as an extension of the healing arts they both practice. Mark focuses on the mind, bringing his studies of yogic philosophy and psychology under Shri Brahmananda Sarasvati to the classroom. Carrie draws upon the medical know-how she garnered in her two decades as a nurse to enhance the benefits of her practice. Together, they seek to restore health to bodies through exercise and associated physical therapies, such as kinesis myofascial integration and yoga therapy, in which students hold asana on a psychoanalyst's couch.