Pilates Mat (Open Level)

This class is taught by:

Theresa Schweingruber

Theresa's training through Drexel University, under the direction of Jennifer Morley, has
prepared her to teach students of all levels in mat classes and on the Pilates equipment.

As a dancer since the age of 4, she initially became interested in Pilates as a reliable cross-training practice to support her dance endeavors. Her genuine love for movement and the mind-body connection only enhanced her experiences with Pilates, both as a teacherand practitioner.

She hopes to share her practice and understanding with others who are also looking for support through cross-training.

Chelsea Gilday

Senior Pilates, Barre, Cardio & Yoga Instructor
Chelsea Gilday was a dancer for most of her life. She practiced every form of dance, but her main focus was ballet. She studied at the Rock School for Dance Education and graduated with a certificate in Dance. She guested with the Pennsylvania Ballet throughout her time there and soon after joined the company. While there she performed a variety of repertoire from original contemporary works set on the company to the classics. With Pennsylvania Ballet she also performed outreach and education programs, bringing dance to the inner city schools of Philadelphia. Chelsea also worked with MANNA while with the company, performing an HIV benefit performance called Shut Up and Dance.
After leaving the ballet company to pursue other interests, she found Pilates and from her first reformer lesson, she wanted more! Chelsea finished her Pilates certification in New York at True Pilates NYC. She is classically trained with all equipment and mat work through Romana's Pilates, where she was able to take lessons with master teachers Sari Mejia Santo and Cynthia Lochard. Chelsea was even able to work with Romana Kryzanowska, Joseph Pilates’ protege student. Chelsea teaches Private Pilates Equipment Training, Group Pilates training, Barre Sculpt Classes, YP Fusion, and Power Yoga at Philly Power Yoga and Thrive Pilates. In the summer of 2013, while filming the movie "Dead Man Down" in Philadelphia, Chelsea worked exclusively with starring actress Noomi Rapace, who even asked her co-star Dominic Cooper to join in on the lessons.
Yet nothing quite gave her the same spark as dancing until she stepped onto her yoga mat. In January 2015, she was accepted to study with Meghan Currie in Nicaragua for her 200 hour YTT and is certified with Yoga Alliance, along with finishing her certification with Steve Gold at Philly Power Yoga. Chelsea loves the creativity and freedom in the flow, making it feel like a dance with focus around the core and alignment. Chelsea is inspired by all forms of movement and infuses her pilates and dance background into her yoga flow. She encourages her students to never stop exploring, questioning, and pushing themselves beyond their own limitations.
She loves this practice because to her it is not exercise--it connects your mind to your body. Every path is so individualized and the more the physical practice unlocks the body, the more the mind opens. It helps you work through any obstacles and brings emotions to the surface that may be very confrontational. Chelsea is passionate about learning and continues to strive to be a better teacher daily. She feels there is no better feeling than being upside down. When she is on her hands balancing, she is completely in the present moment--a meditation for her. She feels her mat is her second home. When she is not practicing, she loves to travel, hike, be by the ocean, or get lost in the city.

Karlee Markarian

Karlee first turned to Pilates in an effort to mange chronic back pain. She believes in constructing a bespoke experience for each client in order to facilitate change not only in body but also in mind. Due to her unique experiences Karlee is able to bring exceptional insight into her work with individuals facing chronic back pain, scoliosis, and other degenerative issues as well as those simply looking to strengthen and transform their bodies.

Originally from New York’s beautiful Hudson Valley, Karlee moved to Philadelphia to study dance at Drexel University. While dancing and teaching Pilates, she also teaches dance to children at a number of facilities spanning from Philadelphia to Swarthmore. Outside of the studios, Karlee enjoys spending time with her family and crafting. Karlee completed her certification through the Drexel Pilates Training Program in the spring of 2012 under Jennifer Morley.

Karlee loves teaching group classes that work the body, mind and soul thoroughly. In addition to group classes, Karlee cultivates specialized duet and private sessions that address the clients every need. 

"Eighteen months ago I would wake up, take ibuprofen, wait 20 minutes and then be able to walk down the stairs. If I sat too long, my left knee would hurt as I tried to walk. I could not sleep only stomach. I walked with a limp and because of that my right hip hurt. Then I started equipment Pilates with Karlee. Within three months, I no longer take ibuprofen in the morning. I immediately walk down the steps. My right hip does not hurt. I walk tall. I can sleep on my stomach. People ask if I lost weight, but I have not. It is the effect that Pilates 1-3 times a week has had on my body. Although I still get aches and pains, especially after a lot of tennis, at the next class Karlee asks "how are you feeling today" and we work on the area that is tight or hurts. Equipment Pilates with Karlee has been fantastic. It really has improved my life."
Donna Murasko, PhD

Julie Donofrio

Julie Donofrio has been practicing Pilates since 2005. While living in San Francisco, Julie completed a comprehensive mat and reformer teacher training program in 2012 at Mercury Fitness Pilates under Master Trainer Lara Hudson.

In 2013, Julie returned to Philadelphia, and completed Core Mat I and II Certification in Power Pilates at Urban Front Pilates. Julie teaches primarily mat classes, with a focus on creating challenging, fitness-building sequences, with a Classical foundation.

Outside of Pilates, Julie is the director of a research nonprofit at Penn School of Design.  She has an undergraduate degree from Wake Forest University, and a Masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania.

Our signature Pilates Mat Class, perfect for practitioners of all levels! This flow is geared towards beginners and advanced practitioners alike, utilizing creative modifications and amplifications. Expect a great workout utilizing all of the classical mat work and Pilates fundamentals.

Upcoming classes:

  • Fri Nov 24 9:00 am - 10:00 am with Theresa Schweingruber
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Mon Nov 27 8:30 am - 9:30 am with Chelsea Gilday
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Thu Nov 30 6:15 pm - 7:15 pm with Karlee Markarian
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Fri Dec 01 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm with Julie Donofrio
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Mon Dec 04 8:30 am - 9:30 am with Chelsea Gilday
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Thu Dec 07 6:15 pm - 7:15 pm with Karlee Markarian
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Fri Dec 08 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm with Julie Donofrio
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Mon Dec 11 8:30 am - 9:30 am with Chelsea Gilday
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Thu Dec 14 6:15 pm - 7:15 pm with Karlee Markarian
    at Thrive Pilates
  • Fri Dec 15 6:30 pm - 7:30 pm with Julie Donofrio
    at Thrive Pilates