Meet our Staff of Comprehensively Trained Teachers
Danica R. Kalemdaroglu
Owner | Teacher Trainer
NCPT - 2005
Nationally Certified Pilates Teacher of the Pilates Method Alliance
Graduate of The Pilates Center (Boulder, CO) 2005
Full Comprehensive Certification (900+ hours)
MFA in Performance/Choreography
University of Colorado at Boulder 2005
BA in Performance/Choreography
Goucher College 2002
Over twenty five years of dancing has its toll on the body. Danica Kalemdaroglu began using Pilates as part of her undergraduate curriculum. Pain in her knees from torn, frayed and removed cartilage began in her late teens. Conventional physical therapy was unable to offer any short or long term relief. She was told numerous times to quit dancing and find a more ‘sedentary’ career. Through precise Pilates instruction, Danica was taught how to re-balance her musculature and work with the dynamic alignment of her spine. Today, she is still dancing, performing and choreographing as co-artistic director of local modern dance company RVA Dance Collective.
You may be thinking to yourself 'What could a dancer possibly know?'. Believe it or not, a degree in dance is more than a fancy license to frolic about. It goes much deeper than the stage. Extensive training in anatomy, kinesiology and physiology were a mandate for the completion of all of her programs. Having learned how to apply the governing laws of anatomy to an art form that lends itself to mystifying physical extremes gives a rare depth to Danica's abilities as an instructor. Education courses were also a mandate. Focusing on identifying and then teaching to an individual's learning style through physical movement. Danica's approach to teaching Pilates is to truly educate the individual about their body versus to simply go through the motions. Completing the Full Comprehensive Certification Program at world renowned The Pilates Center required over 900 hours of Pilates training. The program required an overseen in studio apprenticeship in addition to observation and lesson hours. Traditional Pilates teacher training programs are apprentice based to ensure that teachers learn how to truly teach the methodology of Pilates.
Danica began her dance teacher apprenticeship(s) when she was only fifteen. Under the tutelage of Elbert Watson (The Norfolk Academy) and Martinez family (Virginia Beach Ballet Academy). It was how she made money throughout high school. Teaching little children, summer camps and outreach programs. Her teaching was formalized through her education and then branched out to Pilates. The result is over 15 years of teaching experience. She has held teaching positions at numerous organizations such as: Virginia Commonwealth University, Excel Movement Studios, Carver Center for the Arts and Technology, Cleo Parker Robinson Dance. For over 5 years Danica was the director of modern dance and injury prevention for West End Academy of Dance. She still provides injury prevention services for local dance studios in order to harvest young bodies and minds.
Eliza Diener-Brazelle is comprehensively certified through the Teacher Training Program at Pilates 804. A lifelong dancer and student of movement, Eliza's fascination with functional movement systems was sparked by studying anatomy and somatics while earning a BFA in dance and choreography at Virginia Commonwealth University. Following graduation from VCU, she studied Elemental Body Alignment System (EBAS) under EBAS founder and master teacher Scott Putman, and received her Level I EBAS teaching certification in 2013. As a teacher, Eliza hopes to offer individually tailored instruction to help each of her clients achieve his or her personal movement goals.
Damien Lowery is comprehensively certified through the Teacher Training Program at Pilates 804. He has been a lifelong fan of the fitness industry. His interest in movement began while teaching Les Mills yoga classes in Northern Virginia. During and after his time in Northern Virginia, Damien continued to explore functional movement to strengthen mind, body, and spirit through various exercise approaches. Damien is also looking to obtain a certification as a fitness instructor after the completion of the Teacher Training Program so that he can make meaningful connections to help people feel motivated and enjoy regular physical activity and reap the benefits that exercise has to offer. Damien aspires to help the community to stay fit through movement so that they can enjoy life to its fullest.
Outside of the Pilates/Fitness world you’ll find Damien spending time with his wife Anna and daughter Sydney. There is always an adventure, DIY project, or family excursion waiting around the corner with this family. Damien feels very fortunate to have the support of his family as he works to establish himself in the fitness industry.
Dianne’s first experience with Pilates was in 1998 during rehabilitation for a knee injury. Her full recovery enabled her to continue her professional dance career with Hannah Kahn Dance Company. Being intrigued by this positive outcome, Dianne decided to attend The Pilates Center of Boulder Colorado where she received her classical certification in 2002.
Dianne opened her own studio, Golden Pilates, in Golden Colorado in 2004. She was both senior instructor and business manager. She completed a rehab based Pilates program in Miami Florida with Polestar Pilates in 2013. She was given the opportunity to be both a mentor and host site for the organization from 2014 to 2016. In 2016 Dianne sold her business in Golden and moved to the beautiful beaches of Santa Rosa Beach Florida. She joined SoWal Pilates in Grayton Beach where she instructed as well as assisted with management and marketing duties.
Presently Dianne resides in Richmond, Virginia and is well discipline to enhance her knowledge of the classical work and the linage of Joseph Pilates. Dianne values Pilates as a therapeutic training for recovery. She admires the exploratory process that connects the client with the innate wisdom of the mind, body and spirit and respects this proven modality to guide one to a place of improved function and ability.