Certified Pilates Teacher
Denise Maffia – Denise is a classically trained, comprehensively and PMA® Certified Pilates Teacher also known as a pilates instructor. After returning to dance from a 7-year hiatus Denise discovered that a body in its early 30’s doesn’t move like it did when it was 16. Following a visit to her chiropractor, Denise tried Pilates at her recommendation by taking mat classes at Power Pilates in Manhattan and after 6 months she made the decision to become certified and make Pilates her new career path. She received her mat certification from Power Pilates in 2003 and started teaching out of her home and local dance studios. She completed her comprehensive certification thru Core Pilates NYC in 2006. She worked at Core as both an instructor and Assistant Studio Manager before moving to Huntersville, NC in 2007. Denise holds a BS in Business Studies from SUNY College at Buffalo. She lives with her husband, her son and their 3 furbabies.
Denise has worked with varying populations and accepts the challenge that each individual client brings to her. She works closely with local equestrians to enhance their balance and stamina while riding. She also specializes in client rehabilitation either before or after surgery. She has helped clients avoid surgery altogether and for those that have had surgery helped them return to 100% range of motion thru the affected area. Denise was fortunate enough to share Pilates with the K-2 kids during their after school club at Barnette Elementary school during the 2015-2016 school year.
Pilates Physique offers varying workshops and master classes to enhance your personal Pilates practice and bring awareness to those wanting to learn more about the Pilates Method.
Denise’s commitment to her clientele is evident in the rapport she establishes and in her ability to nurture clients mind, body and spirit. Her expertise has assisted many clients in finding their inner strength and has given them the ability to heal and work on themselves outside the studio environment.
Certified Pilates Teacher
Melissa Darnell – Melissa grew up a ballet dancer in the beautiful state of Washington. Having an artistic director who was also a pilates instructor, Melissa was exposed to Pilates at and early age and fell in love with it’s intrinsic nature to provide balance and efficiency to the body. As a ballet teacher through high school, she soon knew that expanding her teaching abilities to Pilates would be complimentary to her aptitudes in dance and ballet teaching, as well as increase her knowledge of the human body.
After her dancing career took her to the state of Florida, she received her full Pilates certification in Tampa in 2009, while working at Walt Disney World and Bush Gardens, Tampa Bay as a performer. After teaching Pilates in Tampa for a short period, she moved back home to the Pacific Northwest where she taught for several years, and then in Oregon for several more. She moved to NC in 2018 and now lives in Charlotte with her husband and two young children, Carter and Tessa.
She never imagined just how much she would learn over the years, from Pilates. The longer she teaches, the more she realizes just how complex, fascinating and wise the body is. How vitally important it is to develop good body awareness, coordination, strength and flexibility, and how Pilates achieves this like nothing else! Over her past 10 years of teaching, Melissa has had the opportunity to work with, and help people of many populations, including scoliosis, diastisis recti recovery, cancer, back pain, post mastectomy, among others. She strives to meet each client where they are, coming along side them in their journey for healing and physical vitality.
Apprentice Pilates Teacher
Nicole Shank – Nicole is from Greenville, North Carolina and moved to Charlotte to dance with Charlotte Ballet in 2011. Having been a ballerina since six years old, she’s excited to start on a new path in the world of Pilates. Not only does she have a passion for teaching others but has experienced her own change, both physically and emotionally. She has gained strength, eliminated injuries, and corrected years worth of spinal imbalance. With her Mat certification, through AFAA, and pursuit of her Reformer certification, through Balanced Body, Nicole is quickly adding experience to her Pilates repertoire!
Special Event Guest Teacher
Susan Tannehill lives in Cornelius, North Carolina with her husband and lab pup Buddy. She has two adult sons, both of whom live in California and is a brand new grandmother of identical twin grandsons! Susan is a long time practitioner of Pilates and Yoga. She has successfully completed all levels of Reformer, Mat Pilates and Smart Spine Training at Balanced Body. She completed her 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training in 2017 under Grace Morales and in 2018 her advanced 500 hour training under internationally acclaimed Rolf Gates. Susan has recently retired from a long career in Financial Services as Chief Investment Officer of the Individual Advisory Services division of TIAA. Susan can also be found subbing at Gotta Yoga Lake Norman. Watch for Susan at our Pilates Physique Special Events throughout the year!