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." As soon as she began tossing fellow wrestlers around, 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 continues to teach today. True to her inspiration, she uses Pilates as a basis on which to innovate better forms of corrective movement. So far, she's written nine 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.
Studio 54 Salon & Day Spa is committed to beauty from the inside out. The staff members know that a multitude of factors, from vitamin intake to common health problems, play a role in keeping manes and complexions in top-notch shape. That's why its stylists don't just trim away split ends, and its aestheticians do more than merely moisturize skin. The beauty experts also help clients maintain vibrant and healthy skin and hair by referring them to the registered nurse on staff, who performs complete health checks, including measuring blood pressure and screening for diabetes. In addition, Studio 54's staff members offer a range of hairstyles, including options for chemotherapy patients, as well as facials, waxing treatments, and massages. These services utilize vitamin- and mineral-rich ingredients to remove the environment's harmful effects, including sun damage and smog-filled pores.
The technicians at New Glamour Day Spa strive to create an ambiance that is conducive to total relaxation. They focus on banishing stress via guests' senses of smell and touch: they enhance soothing Swedish, deep-tissue, and shiatsu massages with fragrant essential oils, and they aromatize facials with botanical extracts such as lemon and rosemary. The thai herbal massage combines the best of both sensory worlds, incorporating long, sweeping ankle-to-hip and hand-to-shoulder strokes with a heated sachet of detoxifying herbs that can double as a sweetly scented doorstop.
The team uses the G.M. Collin skincare line, combating specific issues with nature-based ingredients such as jojoba oil and orange-blossom water. They also offer exfoliating body treatments, permanent makeup, and eyelash extensions.
Jen McWaters' mat Pilates class mixes classic movements with props such as inflatable balls, yoga blocks, and the enigmatic vortex of fitness known only as the Magic Circle to keep Pilates pros on their toes. Taught by the studio's titular tutor, Jen McWalters, advanced mat Pilates is a fast-tempo testing ground for upper-level Pilates paladins. Beginner classes are also available for those who still experience enthusiastic, open-mouthed awe at the simplest of Pilates maneuvers. Check the schedule for class times; all classes are drop-in, so there's no need to register ahead of time. After 10 classes, your body will as finely tuned as a fresh-out-of-the-factory What About Bob? pinball machine.