"To be honest, I opened the space because of its location," says Jan Phillips, a Brooklyn mother and owner of Henry Street Pilates in Cobble Hill. "It's right near my house!" The former ballerina, who logged in 700 hours of training with Romana Kryzanowska (Joseph Pilates' successor) before receiving her certification, transformed a vacated laundromat into a veritable Pilates paradise, complete with seven Towers, last summer in record time (just six weeks), and since September, has drawn a steady stream of in-the-know neighborhood clients. "I've had to hire two new instructors already, we've been so busy," she says. Her focus on classical Pilates, as its creator intended, involves a series of short exercises on an elevated mat connected to springs, bars, and handles that "allow you to move the body in any number of directions...up and down, in and out, back to front, side to side," says Phillips. "Think of a trapeze act without the Spandex and altitude." And, thanks to small, intimate classes, plus several sessions throughout the day, patrons receive plenty of individual attention for a fraction of the cost of private lessons. Advanced reservations are required, and can be purchased at www.henrystreetpilates.com.
Henry Street Pilates, 385 Henry Street (at Verandah Place), Brooklyn, NY.