Kim Carruthers: The Reformer

GA 35 | Kim Carruthers

 

Kim sculpts bodies, minds, and spirits. She’s a master Pilates instructor, founder of Physical Perfection Pilates. Check out her IG (@physicalperfectionpilates) and you’ll see why this is the perfect name for her studio. She’s a life and wellness coach as well. Her beauty, joy, and power make her a personal icon to me. Her private client list is filled with celebrities and athletes. She has a long wait-list for her private, bespoke sessions. She gives just as much back to communities in Los Angeles where Pilates isn’t necessarily easily available to everyone with her other company, Pilates In The Hood. Pilates In The Hood is a program fully covered by insurance (the 1st of its kind) that brings not only Pilates to people, but also jobs for women who can train with her and then teach for Pilates In The Hood. She says she’s always seen herself as “the Black Jane Fonda” and I absolutely see that. She has an app coming, a clothing line in the works, her custom resistance bands are out and an online studio all on the horizon. I cannot wait! I’ve been insanely lucky to take 3 private classes over zoom with her and she’s THE BEST. I mean, it’s torture, I feel like every muscle in my body is on fire…but in a good way. Kim FTW!

Listen to the podcast here:

Kim Carruthers: The Reformer

Kim Carruthers is joining me for this episode. She is the Owner and Founder of Physical Perfection Pilates. She is physically perfect. If no one has ever checked out her Instagram, you need to. She does private clients, duo clients and has an entire program called Pilates In The Hood, where she brings Pilates to communities who might not otherwise have Pilates or know about Pilates. It is covered by insurance. That program is several years old and she has so much on the horizon. She has an app, a virtual studio, a clothing line, and resistance bands. She truly is a leader, an activist, and somebody that I greatly admire. I hope that you enjoy this episode with Kim Carruthers.

I’m here with Kim Carruthers of Physical Perfection Pilates. She’s physically perfect. I’d like to welcome you and talk about your career, your studio, and what you’re doing with fitness in the world, which is exciting. Thank you for joining me.

Thank you for having me.

I have worked out my whole life and never done Pilates until this pandemic. I’ve done tons of barre. I was a barre teacher. I used to dance and had taken maybe three reformer classes. All the bodies that I see on Instagram that I love are Pilates bodies. They’re strong, lean, and flexible. You are such a role model for me. We’re around the same age. I want to know everything. How did you come to Pilates? Were you a dancer?

I was a dancer who had an injury. I had tendonitis of the hip and it was a recurrent injury. At that time, I was in physical therapy and my physical therapist suggested that I start Pilates. I started Pilates and I fell in love with it. After I was finished with my dance career and deciding that I wanted to retire, what would I do or what could I do or what were things that I loved and what felt normal to me was Pilates. It was one of those things that I was like, “I love Pilates.” I decided to go to school for Pilates and get certified. I originally started as a personal trainer and I was training in a gym in New York and that led to Pilates. It felt normal and correct. It’s the right niche for me.

Are you from New York?

I’m from the East Coast. My family’s from Philadelphia, but I moved to New York when I was eighteen. I lived there for almost ten years before I decided to come to the West Coast.

Where you a ballet dancer or modern?

I’m classically trained in ballet and modern dance. I do all forms of dance, but what I love the most is modern. I performed with several different New York-based companies and trained in various styles of dance from Graham to ballet to the Horton technique and all those different things. I love classical ballet as well.

You look like you’re an everything dancer. You have the perfect high arches and points. I stare at your feet in your Instagram.

It’s funny sometimes I know when someone’s a dancer because they have right feet and only dancers were out of the entire picture to notice the feet.

Pilates is like 7/11, they're on every corner. They're everywhere. Click To Tweet

What are your thoughts and how do you feel as with yoga, barre and Pilates, people can get trained in a weekend and they get whatever certification they get? They can be sent out into the world and teach. That scares me so much, both as a student and has been a barre teacher for a long time. I dance, that’s not how I would want to teach either, because how would you know what you’re talking about?

It’s different. Pilates is like 7/11, they’re on every corner. They’re everywhere. There are people like, “I got trained for a weekend. I did a weekend seminar and I opened a Pilates studio.” There are people that I know sometimes and I’m cringing like, “I’ve been teaching for a year, but now I’m also training other teachers, which is a huge problem.” What’s interesting to me back when I went to school to learn how to be a Pilates instructor, I studied the Pilates method and all of those things, the process is difficult and hard. I thought, “This is crazy,” because back then you had to do 600 hours, not a weekend.

We had to work and train at the original Pilates studio for two years. We had a two-year contract. I had to do an apprenticeship, also under a physical therapist, then I had to work with a physical therapist. Back then I thought, “These people are insane. This is like a prison. I can’t believe I signed myself up for this.” Not all of it was great because it was difficult, but I would never exchange that type of education. It was awesome as far as what I learned and it set me aside from other teachers. I can look at a Pilates instructor, see them do or teach one exercise and I know possibly where you trained at and how long you have possibly trained for.

It’s certain things that teachers that come from what we call old school classical Pilates, we all can look at each other and tell by doing one exercise if you had the proper training or not. It is scary in a sense because it’s not taken seriously and people don’t understand that Pilates is not just a form of exercise, it’s a method. A lot of people are always shocked to learn this, but it was a person. Joseph Pilates created a technique. He created a method that he believed in and it wasn’t to look a certain way. It was mind, body, and spirit. That is one unit working together and a lot of people don’t understand that. They think it’s called Pilates, but they don’t understand that it’s someone’s last name. It’s a method that should be taken seriously. It is something that you should be able to do for a lifetime.

GA 35 | Kim Carruthers
Kim Carruthers: Teachers that come from what we call old school classical Pilates can look at each other and tell by doing one exercise if you had the proper training or not.

 

You are a testament to that.

I’ve been teaching now for many years.

It shows in your work. I am so blown away by you. You’ve trained hard. It was two full years of training. That’s what you said.

That was prior to going out on my own, getting my own clients, building my own clientele, and learning from that. I believe you put everything that you’ve learned all into it and that’s what makes for a great teacher. Every philosophy, everything that you believe in, it is yoga or dance. All of those things fused together can create an amazing foundation, but your foundation and your technique have to come from what you have learned.

From a place of knowledge.

It has to be knowledge. We took practical tests, physical tests, and written exams. It was difficult. I remember we took a test at 200 hours and then you take a test at 400 hours, then you take a test at 600 hours. All of those were practical and written exams. We had to work and train on each other’s bodies all the time. That was the beautiful thing about it. We were in the studio all the time, working on our apprenticeship hours. You were always working. You always had someone or a friend or someone who was also training at the same time as you. We could hop on the equipment, work out, train each other, and learn from one another. That was a beautiful experience and they don’t necessarily do it that way anymore.

You came out here and when did you open your own studio?

I opened my first studio in 2004 or 2005. I had been here prior to. I was training at a house that turned into a gym, and it was amazing. It was called Angel City Gym. It was off of Melrose Place in Robertson. We were all contracting trainers. We all paid rent there and we all had our individual clients. We were all contractors. It was a beautiful location and time as well. I bought my clients out there right after 9/11 because 9/11 made things difficult. I was training on the Paramount lot prior to 9/11. If you wanted to do Pilates, you could come to the lot and train with me there. 9/11 changed that because it made it difficult. It took so long to get onto the lot with the security changes. I went to Angels City Gym, which was at that time, a very popular place as a place to be in Hollywood. Now, I think Catch Restaurants is right next to her. We were right across from Maxfield, and it was awesome. We had koi ponds, Pilates instructors, strength trainers and bodybuilders all together working with our own clientele.

Did you get your clients simply by word of mouth? People thought you were unbelievable and recommended you?

In this business, it takes luck. It takes determination, a lot of sleepless nights, and you have to be fearless. For me, I had a goal, intention and I manifested that when I was in New York. I always say, “I’m going to LA.” I laugh about it now because it sounds shallow. Back then I was like, “I’m going to LA and I’m training Hollywood celebrities.” I manifested that.

You distilled it down to exactly what was going to happen. That’s essentialism.

At that time, I didn’t know I was manifesting that. I was speaking it into existence. I came to LA and started working with a woman who was a movie producer. It’s like popcorn after that. That’s what I call it. It’s like she tells someone and then they told someone and then I became what they used to say, “She’s Hollywood’s best-kept secret.” I had clients and I would work out in Angels City and I realized how much money I was spending on rent and it wasn’t my own facility. I opened my first studio in the summer of 2004 in Hancock Park on Larchmont Street in Larchmont Village. It was a cool and amazing studio. That was where my first studio was. Since then, I’m on 4 or 5, but now I’m located in Hollywood. I’m back in Hollywood where I originally started. I went full circle and I’m in a location that I always wanted to be and it happened to become available.

It’s in Hollywood.

I have a private studio in Hollywood and it’s on Sunset Boulevard. It’s within walking distance from the Chateau. It’s a cool neighborhood. It’s private, quaint, and perfect for all my clients. It is not as big as my original studio. I’ve been teaching for so long, so I’ve learned what works best for me and being able to train my clients individually and/or doing duals work best. I don’t teach a lot of classes anymore. I mainly work with my private clientele.

When the pandemic hit, how has that pivoting from having your private clients or duos to strictly doing Zooms?

I’m strictly virtual. Originally, I thought this was going to be short. I need a vacation. I was excited about the vacation. When I worked last March 10, 2020, I had a couple of COVID scares. For me, the anxiety, I knew by that weekend way before our governor closed the state down or put us on a stay at home order, for myself, I couldn’t do it anymore. It was the anxiety of always worried about who’s going to call you. At that time, I had some clients that had been exposed and they’re famous. I wait to see if they were going to have COVID, and what does that mean for me? What does it mean for my family? I made the decision that it was best for me to close my private studio. I could no longer deal with the anxiety, even when the state opened back up and for one month, we were able to come back. I never came back because I could not make it make sense.

Back in March 2020, this will be such a great vacation. We’re all, “Two weeks, flatten the curve. We’re going to be good.” Was it difficult at all for you to pivot once we realized this was not going to go away in 2 weeks or 2 months or 4 months?

For me, it was my clients that encouraged me to go virtual. I’m old school. If it’s not in person, then it can’t happen.

It was your clients who said, “Can we do this?”

Yes. Others are saying, “Kim, we can go. We can do this on Zoom. You can do this.” I was like, “Give me a week. I’ll come back and I’ll do a Zoom.” It’s been great. I’ve learned so much because I’m black and white, and old school about everything. I’m like the person who still writes down, everything in a file of facts. I need to write it down. I’m old school in that kind of way and it works for me. The idea of going virtual was something I would never think to do. I spent a lot of time with clients that have to travel for work and things of that sort.

Sometimes I have to travel to the set or on location and this has changed my life. It has changed other people’s lives that work with me because prior to COVID, what we would do is if I can’t come to you, if you’re traveling, we would make workout videos. I would send things to you and that’s a lot of prep and a lot of work. Even I have clients who have gone back to work and that are in different countries, I can still work with them like I was in Canada and then I was in New Orleans and I’m here talking to you. I feel like I’ve been around the world from my house. It’s been amazing. It has allowed me to open up to do things that I would never do.

That’s such a heartwarming story to hear because many people are like, “Many businesses are having a hard time.” It’s wonderful that you’re a woman. You have this Pilates, a woman-owned business and it’s been great for you. You can reach more people.

It has allowed me to also do things that are quiet time, to sit down, to think about all the other things that I wanted to do that when I’m in my studio, I’m too busy to do. It’s allowed me to create my own brand and I have a clothing line.

I’ve seen your T-shirt, Straight Out of Pilates. She’s wearing a sexy leopard sports bra.

I would have never ever been able to do this prior to, even though it’s always been a dream and people have always encouraged me and uplifted me like, “You should do a clothing line,” because a lot of times I do a lot of speaking engagements or teaching events and 9 out of 10 times, I always think that women want to talk to me. When I open up the floor for Q&A, I normally am stressed about people asking me about calories or weight loss or Joseph Pilates’ birthday or all these other things that I have to study for all my fitness and make sure you get these things right. Normally, women say out of 100 people, they asked me what am I wearing, “Your outfit is so cute.”

Things that you would never think of, “I would like to get those shoes. Where did you buy them from?” It’s been on my mind and in my spirit for a long time. COVID has done that for me. COVID has allowed me to be able to design. I would never be able to be on the phone or on the internet working out things, taking videos, and drawing sketches of things that wouldn’t even be possible. It made me work harder because also with COVID, when you’re creating a brand, you can go into factories like you would be able to. I can’t sit down with a seamstress. I can’t go talk to the manufacturer. I can’t touch and feel the fabric. I have to order the fabrics.

They have to be shipped to me 9 times out of 10, they’re coming from different countries and you have to wait for your samples and all these other things that normally I would have given up and said, “I can’t do this.” Now, I have time. I’m like, “Fourteen days I’ll be in the house. Send it.” It has allowed me to slow down, spend time with my family and think about the other things that I’ve always wanted to do, some of my other dreams, and make those things happen. I’m excited about that. I never got sad about my studio being closed. I decided to turn it into something else.

GA 35 | Kim Carruthers
Kim Carruthers: Even when the world returns back to a new normal, a lot of people are still going to do home workouts.

 

That’s the best outlook and way to be, but you still have the studio.

Many people have asked me, “Are you going to close?” I wouldn’t do that because my studio is my dream. That’s my child. That’s something I would never give up on. I believe that we’re going to take a turn and things are going to be great again. I’m looking forward to going back into the studio.

It’ll be a mix.

I will always now have a virtual platform. I’m working on an app right now. I always will have an app. I will always have a virtual platform. It’s something I didn’t think about before and called. It did that for me. Now, I recognize that I don’t even know how I had a business without a virtual platform. I’m like, “How am I doing this successfully?” When I go back to work, my clients that are traveling and things of that store will still be able to have the access that is required for them to be able to work out with me.

A great teacher never has to demonstrate. A great teacher can verbally express what is required. Click To Tweet

Was it hard for you to figure out how to teach Zoom classes well? One-on-one, you have that direct, energetic connection with a client. It’s different. I see it with my children in school. My first grader has an awesome teacher, but it’s a learning curve for teachers also.

We have to learn because when I’m in front of you, I pride myself on, “A great teacher never has to demonstrate. A great teacher can verbally express what is required.” I pride myself. When I watch other people teach, if I see people under me, apprentices and things that work for me, teachers that work for me, they all know I don’t want to see you demonstrate too much. I want you to be able to express with words, feeling, and the emotion behind it when your clients understand what is required because it’s bigger than all of someone looking like myself when I do it. “You are not going to look like me so I don’t want you to try to mimic me. I want you to do what works for your body, what feels right on your body. We’re going to talk through this process.”

What I quickly learned once I started teaching virtually is that it’s physically difficult. In my first week, I was exhausted. Maybe in the first month, I was exhausted because I found myself, I have to work out with every client. If you are like me, I love to stack my clients, I don’t take breaks and that’s how I work. A lot of people like to take breaks. I don’t take breaks only because all these years I’ve found that once I take a break, then I’m done. I don’t like to sit down for hours and start again. It doesn’t work. Once I’m flowing, it flows because I don’t design programs. I don’t write down programs. It’s how I feel once I start working with you and what the intention is behind your workout for yourself. That’s when I know what to do and what to work with you on because it’s all about your intentions.

If I predesigned your workout, how would I know what is required for you or what you need? I never write down exercises or program design, but some people do it that way and I’m not against that. For me, it doesn’t work. What I’ve learned virtually, I have to work out with every client. Physically it was hard because I had to continue to show. I’m not in front of you and you can’t necessarily understand what I’m telling you. Sometimes I have to keep showing you and people have to see. I’m doing it individually because I teach mainly privates.

You had to learn to conserve your energy, how to expend it, how much work it when you demonstrate.

I have to schedule when I’m going to eat. Sometimes I’m training a client and I’m texting on my phone at the same time. I call it to my restaurant downstairs in my house. I’m texting, “Bring me some tea. Could you please bring me a bowl of fruit?”

I’m glad you have helpers there.

My daughter happens to be home because of COVID-19. That has worked out as well. I have more assistance than I had prior to, so I have a team of people able to help me. My mom has been helpful with the whole going virtually. She does a lot of the books and a lot of the programming. I have an assistant who returns a lot of the emails. I have a team of people that have been able to help me because if not, it would be too difficult. I pride myself on trying to, even if I can’t work with you, I want to get back to you. To the people around the world that send me direct messages on Instagram and emails, we do read those emails. Once we’re reading the emails, we look for the story. It’s a feeling that I get and it’s your story that makes me compelled to want to work with you when I’m busy. If I have a story, then it makes me want to fit you into a schedule that I don’t have possibilities to fit people in.

I felt like I was winning the lottery. I do every time. I’ve only had a couple of lessons, but whenever you have a spot and if I can make it, it’s the best.

I’m happy to be able to do that. I try to do that with people. I try to respond because you don’t recognize how many people’s lives are touching by saying, “I read your email and I can give you some pointers. I can tell you some things.” People ask me questions and there are a lot of people that are dealing with a lot of things emotionally and spiritually. You would never dream that people will write. They will tell me their whole story. I want to help. Even when I can help, I can help by responding to you, giving you some information, some encouragement, and some positive words. That goes far. How you make people feel says a lot about you. People remember that as I work on this. For me, it’s my story.

I found you because I am a huge fan of Jenna Dewan. Her dancing and acting is amazing. She’s beautiful. You have been her teacher for a long time. She’s talked about you a lot on Instagram. She posted a video of herself in her garage and she was on some piece of equipment. She said how phenomenal you are and how you’ve been teaching her for a long time. I found your page. When we eventually connected, I said, “I have no equipment. I have a mat at home. I have some resistance bands. I don’t have a reformer. I don’t have the round thing. I have no machinery. Can I still do this?” You said, “Absolutely. It all started on the mat. The machinery and the equipment is more as you evolve through Pilates, but you don’t need it.” That’s good for people to know because I was like, “I can’t do Pilates. I don’t have a home studio with all of these things.”

As you see, when we work out, you need your body and floor. You don’t even need a mat. We can do it on a towel if you have carpet or any of those things. If you have a mat, you can do a full Pilates session and you will get a great workout. As you see, I include bands, balls, and I have my own bands that you can buy on my website.

I saw a post that you posted that said, “If there’s one thing you do, get a resistance band.”

You add little things and it makes a difference. At-home workouts are huge. Even when the world returns back to a new normal because it won’t be our old normal, a lot of people are still going to do at-home workouts for a long time.

I never thought I would be like, “I want to leave my house. I have kids and it’s messy. It’s my time to get away.” Now that I’ve been doing it for so long, I’m like, “There’s something to be said, how much time am I saving.” You are amazing.

It’s like the one-hour class turns into three hours.

Do you only do privates and duos?

I only do private and duos and I have other business endeavors where I do offer classes, but these classes are through my Pilates in the Hood Program. We’re celebrating 15 years in 2020 and it’s called Pilates in the Hood. It’s received a lot of national attention. It’s the Pilates program that offers Pilates to those that would not necessarily have the option or the opportunity to do Pilates due to diversity, finances, systemic racism and geography. We come into communities that don’t have Pilates programs or even neighborhoods that people have never even heard of Pilates.

We partner with local health insurance. If you are a member of that particular health insurance, then you can come to their community resource centers and take our Pilates in the Hood classes for free. Pilates in the Hood is 15 years old in 2020. We’ve been featured on Oprah, Newsweek, The Today Show. It’s an awesome program because we’ve been doing it for many years. I have kids that grew up in my program that are now teaching a program. I have women that have retired from their careers and came to start taking the classes. Now they’re teachers. It’s a beautiful thing. We do other things like breast cancer walks or going back to school events.

Let’s go back to Pilates in the Hood. The program sounds remarkable. Tell me everything.

Pilates in the Hood is my brainchild that we celebrated our 15th year anniversary in 2020. It is a program that brings Pilates to those that would not have the same options as others or would not have the opportunity to experience any type of wellness programs due to geography, finances, systemic racism, and things like that.

Especially because wellness, as we know it, always feels very elitist. Sometimes I can feel it’s super white. It’s one of the things in 2020 that has been brought to the forefront in the best way and the shakeup of the universe has been more knowledge, education, and visibility of women-owned businesses and black businesses. You are both. What an amazing thing to do to also spread it within the community.

I found that not enough people knew what I did or what I was doing and had the opportunity to benefit from it. I also wanted to be able to help mothers and women that might need something like their second careers. We have a lot of women that originally were members, they started taking the classes and they have learned to use Pilates to help themselves. A lot of the people that grew up in the program are now some of the teachers for the program. It pays it forward.

Do you have a teacher training program or is it for Pilates in the Hood instructor?

It’s Pilates in the Hood, but there have been times where I meet people and then they went like to do an apprenticeship up under me. I do apprenticeship all the time, but I don’t want my own teacher training program at this time.

The women that teach, do they do a Pilates instructor training through various people and then come to you to apprentice, or do you teach them?

What happens is these are women and/or young women because I have people that have been with me so long that I had them as children. Now they’re adults and married. A lot of them started taking Pilates with me through the years and then decided that they loved it. They did an apprenticeship under me. We did all of the proper training and all those things so that they could then on their own going get certified and then work for the program. Our program is within several different community resource centers.

We’re in local schools, in churches, we have a program with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. We have different contracts and teachers work for me. We also have virtual teaching. The virtual program is with the local California Health Insurance. That program is for the members of the health insurance to be able to experience Pilates virtually while they are at home. We use their platform and the teachers as well as myself. I teach once a week and the member able to take our Pilates classes.

I don’t think I could love this anymore. This program sounds cool. Afar from that, you do privates and duos.

I do privates and duos virtually. I don’t do any big group classes at the time, but annually, since we have been in the pandemic, every so often I will advertise that I’m going to do a weekend Zoomlates class, and tons of people sign up. I’m going to do one in the first week of January 2021 because that’s the week that will be excited or new people that haven’t pick it out will be very excited to get going.

For you yourself, I know that we discussed that when you Zoom teaches, you end up having to demonstrate so much. It’s a lot of work on your body, but in a normal time, do you work yourself out with Pilates? Do you give yourself your own class, going in a reform?

I’m disciplined in that way. That no matter what, even when I’m super busy, I try to make sure if nothing else, I get two workouts in a week outside of all the demonstrating. I try to hop on the equipment and give myself a proper workout at least two days a week. I usually take two days off in between. I try to schedule it. I might do it on a Tuesday and then I’ll do it on my light day on Friday. I teach a lot and I ended up doing things like that, but I try to do other things. I do a lot of sound baths. It’s good with my mental health as well. I love hikes and walks. Those are the types of things that I’m doing a lot of, even in the pandemic, I’ve been home and done a lot of virtual sound baths.

Do you do them yourself?

No. I participate. It’s amazing to experience how vibration and sound and how it’s so healing. I did a twelve-hour sleepover sound bath. It was amazing because I wouldn’t think that I would be so nervous about, “Would I be able to stay for twelve hours?” It was a sleepover and it was the most amazing thing because they switched out the players, the sound allergist, it was switching out. Even if you fell asleep, when you woke up, those sound never stopped. I do a lot of sound baths, spas, and retreats for myself. I’m big into water. I spent a lot of time at the beach. I’m at the beach at least twice a week.

GA 35 | Kim Carruthers
Kim Carruthers: What’s great about Pilates is it doesn’t discriminate on size, on age, or any of those things.

 

How important to inform your body and your mind with something other than Pilates because it can’t be the one thing? Hiking, sound baths, and all of that help keep everything in tune.

I’m always looking to experience and do new things that I’ve never tried before. Some of my favorite things are sound bath. I love the classes I signed up for and they call it gentle yoga. Early morning, I do Pilates and gentle yoga.

I have been loving Yin Yoga, which is something that I never did before the pandemic. I was always power yoga or the much more strenuous ones. Give me Yin now and it’s helpful.

We need to restore and involve ourselves in mindfulness, how to repair, recover and have intention in everything that we do. I’m big in that.

Are you a motivational speaker or a life coach because I feel that you definitely can be if you’re not?

I am a life coach and a certified holistic wellness specialist. I bring all of that together. I have a method called the KC Method.

I thought that was the Pilates. That’s not. That’s more integral.

It’s everything that I do. It’s mind, body, spirit, and how I infuse all of those things together with an intention to help the clients with whatever they’re trying to achieve.

Do you get clients for your methods through Pilates or all different ways?

Most of them come through Pilates, but I think after they work out with me a few times or talk to me, they realized like, “This is more than just exercise.”

You told me that you have a daughter. Does she do Pilates?

She grew up doing a lot of Pilates. My daughter spent a lot of time as a child in Pilates. She was raised in my studio. She doesn’t practice as much anymore because she’s busy. She’s an athlete. With that being said, she’s great at Pilates. We try to work out together sometimes, but it’s like with anything. Your parents, this is their career, and this is what they do. All the time, she’s like, “Mom, when are you going to retrain me? When are you going to teach me?” I’m constantly doing some type of bodywork with him be it, “I need a massage. Can you stretch me out?”

The length and the strength that come together with Pilates from me having done few classes, two sessions with you and I did a group reformer class three times. It is phenomenal and I am 100% believer now. I see and get it. It works. It’s safe and you can do it and be in unbelievable shape for years to come.

That’s what’s great about Pilates. It’s like playing golf or tennis and how they say, “You can play golf or tennis for the rest of your life.” It doesn’t discriminate. That’s what I love about Pilates. It doesn’t discriminate on size or on age or any of those things. That’s what’s great because a lot of doctors have infused Pilates into their practices. It’s not like it was years ago. Nowadays, you can have a hip replacement and they’re like, “You should take Pilates.”

The fact that Pilates in the Hood Is covered by and part of an insurance program, that really speaks volumes.

We were the first program ever that was fully covered by insurance. It’s great because we are in communities that would not have these options otherwise.

This was your brainchild or your heart child.

In the beginning, I never thought that it would be many years later and we’ve become a family and that’s what’s great about it. Most of the people in the program, I know everyone and their family members. I go to Bar mitzvahs, baptismal, quinceaneras, and church events. We’re family members. We do all types of things. We have annual Christmas parties. I’ve been able to see children grow up. I have some of these children that started with me and now I see them, they are married, and their children are now taking my classes. That’s incredible.

It’s beautiful to see that you’re at the top of your field and you train amazing people. I see the results of your work all over Instagram and then your own physique, but then to pay it forward like that and to bring it into communities where Pilates would not be prevalent or maybe people hadn’t ever heard of it, that’s a wonderful thing. It distills down for me so much of what 2020 is about. Anybody who doesn’t know you can find you on Instagram, @PhysicalPerfectionPilates.

My website is KimCarruthers.com. It’s easy to find me there and we’re working on an app. The app will be coming soon. You’ll be able to follow along. That was another thing I learned in the pandemic that I needed an app because many people reach out to me and would like to work out for me but I’m not available or I have never done a virtual platform. I’m excited that I’m doing it now.

Is that part of the app, the virtual platforms?

Yeah, that’s going to be so great because I’ll be able to reach the people that send me those lovely emails that are inspired and are looking for new things to do and might not necessarily have the opportunity and/or the finances or the reach. It sometimes comes down to geography. It’s exciting for me as well.

You have an app coming, you have a clothing line coming, you have your resistance bands out, your private clients, your Pilates in the Hood.

I always saw myself as the black Jane Fonda. I always was like, “How can I be in everyone’s living room?” That’s what the pandemic did for me. You’ve always said this. You always want it to be able to help everyone and be assessable and be in the situation where I could reach people because I hate to say no, and now that is coming forward. It’s been exciting to work on it as well because I’ve had to learn so much. I’m not a tech-savvy person at all. This has been a huge challenge for me. I’m excited about it because I’m doing things that I would have never done if we had not had to all experience this together.

You are outside of your comfort zone and crushing it. I feel that as a leader, as a mentor, as an activist, and as a role model, you’re amazing. Check out her Instagram, if anybody doesn’t know you. I hope that maybe if there are any cancellations, I can have a session with you again.

I can’t wait to work and get together for sure. Thank you so much for having me.

I’m such a fan and thank you.

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About Kim Carruthers

GA 35 | Kim CarruthersKimberley Carruthers is a certified celebrity Pilates instructor, lifestyle wellness coach, personal trainer, and holistic health specialist based in Los Angeles.

During her time as a professional dancer, Kim became fascinated by the transformative power of the teachings by Joseph Pilates.

In 1997, she became certified by The American Council On Exercise and in Pilates. Kim went on to become a personal Pilates instructor and lifestyle wellness coach to a diverse clientele in the Greater Los Angeles area.

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