Pilates Indy Has Been Serving Indy Residents for 20 Years & Counting
Writer / Seth Johnson
Photographer / Michael Durr
Pilates Indy is all about helping clients get a better understanding of how their body moves, whether that happens to be an Irish step dancer or a professional football player.
“It’s amazing how few of us understand how our body is supposed to move,” says Pilates Indy founder Katie Wright. “Like, we get by. But the more you understand the mechanics of your own movement, the easier life becomes.”
Started in 2002, Pilates Indy offers private, semi-private and group Pilates mat and equipment sessions, along with private Gyrotonic® sessions and Gyrokinesis® classes. With two locations in Broad Ripple and Greenwood, Pilates Indy offers Pilates instruction for everyone, whether you’re new to exercise or a professional athlete.
Originally from New Hampshire, Wright first discovered Pilates while taking part in a dance camp at the age of 13.
“I was introduced to Pilates and found how much it changed my dancing and really connected me to my core,” Wright says. “I was one of those who was not able to turn and went from doing single turns to triples in about a week. So I was like, ‘There’s something to this.’”
After going out to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and gaining her first Pilates certification under the direction of Dolly Kelepecz, Wright eventually made her way to Indianapolis to enroll in school at Butler University. While still a student at Butler, she first started teaching Pilates privately, and hence, the seed for Pilates Indy was planted.
“I initially opened a small studio in the basement of my apartment,” Wright says. “I graduated from Butler in 2002. In a matter of two weeks’ time, I graduated, bought a house and incorporated my studio. I was like, ‘Alright, let’s do this!’”
As word got out around the city about Wright’s Pilates instruction, she quickly found the need to expand out of her home. This led to the first Pilates Indy studio, located at 10001 Broad Ripple Ave. on the second floor.
“When I started out of my house, I was teaching mat classes all over the city, while taking clients in my home,” Wright says. “I just discovered that there were more clients than I could personally help. So I was like, ‘It’s time to do some expansion.’”
Having been at the Broad Ripple location since 2005, Wright has greatly expanded upon her staff. Now at Pilates Indy, she can offer clients a variety of instructors to fit their personalized needs.
“We have a wide range of instructors, from apprentices to certified instructors to our master-level instructors,” Wright says. “So if someone’s coming in with a bunch of injuries or a recent surgery, I’m going to put them with a more experienced trainer. But if I have someone coming in that’s pretty healthy and they’re like, ‘I need to maintain my budget,’ then I’m like, ‘Well, why don’t you try out one of our apprentices?’ And I always try to leave the door open and say, ‘If this is not your match, just say something, and we’ll try something else.’ Because we have the flexibility within the studio to do that.”
When a potential client initially reaches out to Pilates Indy, Wright makes sure they know that the studio is open and welcoming to all.
“We want you to come in at wherever you are and better yourself,” Wright says. “There’s no certain level you have to be at to come in. All you have to do is want to move and want to feel better.”
With this in mind, the current clientele at Pilates Indy is diverse in just about every sense of the word.
“Right now, I have as young as 11 and as old as 90, so it’s very diverse,” Wright says. “No one is too small. No one is too big. I have clients that are a little over four feet, and I have some that are six-foot-six.”
For those curious about Pilates but not ready to fully dedicate financially, Pilates Indy also offers a variety of options, including their “Try 3 and SEE!” program.
“Some people really like private sessions, some people really like mat classes and some people really like equipment classes,” Wright says. “So we came up with our ‘Try 3 and SEE!’ program. It gives you a chance to try three of each item, and then choose for yourself. Because I don’t think it’s my position to choose what you like.”
At the end of the day, Pilates Indy simply wants to help Indy residents revel in whatever it is they love doing most.
“You do Pilates to enjoy every other aspect of your life,” Wright says. “It is functional, core training that I think is somewhat of a fountain of youth. It makes it so that you can go off and do your run. You can do the 50-mile bike ride. You can recover from marathons faster. Just in general, [it makes you] feel better.”
Pilates Indy is located at 1001 Broad Ripple Ave, 2nd Floor in Indianapolis.