Customer Thoughts and Reviews
Having lived with sciatica for more than a decade I had accepted the fact that back surgery was the only solution to relieving back pain and eliminating the numbness in my right leg. After an MRI revealed only minor damage to the opposite side of my back pain and numbness I decided to try Pilates. Kristen was able to evaluate the problem and started me on an exercise program that, after 9 months, has significantly reduced the symptoms. I now see the light at the end of the tunnel and expect to see a full recovery in a few months.
As a bonus to the wonderful improvement in my back, Kristen helped convert me from a soft 200+ pounds to a lean and mostly fit 172 pounds. As a result my health and well being have significantly improved (my blood pressure is now normal and strength and stamina are returning). I haven’t felt this healthy in 20 years! Plus, there is an added bonus; the sessions are a blast. Both the one-on-one sessions and the group mat sessions are something I look forward to each week. The mat sessions provide an opportunity to meet others who share similar experiences. As a result I am meeting great people and developing new friendships, what could be better?
I sincerely thank Kristen for all her help to date and look forward to continuing down this fitness path.
I have taken one-on-one Pilates classes from Kristin for past 3.5 years, and I can attest that she is the best instructor I have ever had, bar none. Kristin is able to point out exactly what I am doing incorrectly, and can demonstrate in excruciating detail…but in a positive way…the erroneous movement I have made (head too far forward, left hip hiked up, lifting with shoulders rather than back muscles, etc.). Because she is able to mimic the error, I am much more able to recognize and correct it, rather than if she just explained it verbally. But…she is also excellent at wording her instructions, using a variety of images and analogies until she finds one that resonates with me. The uncanny talent that Kristin has is remembering all the individual cuing for each of her students.
We spent a week at Gold Beach and got a couples special. Kristen is the owner and instructor. She is FANTASTIC. We had very little experience with the reformer but she is a remarkable, enthusiastic, and attentive teacher. We learned a lot, got a great workout tailored to our individual needs and enjoyed ourselves immensely while working hard. Kristen is sincere, genuine and knows how a body works and what needs attention. She has a nice roomy studio with all of the equipment you would need for various types of exercise programs (TRX, kettle balls, etc.). And she knows how to incorporate them into a session in order to meet your goals.
If you are vacationing nearby or live in the area and want to get exceptional attention and knowledgeable instruction, drop by or call her. The studio # is 541-425-5161.
Joe K. Palo Alto, CA
I credit my ability to walk and return to work after a serious injury to training with Kristen at Santa Barbara Pilates with her superior Pilates skills! I had to be off work 4 months due to a commuted L Sacral fracture. I had to use a walker for nearly 1year, at home and work. I could not carry even a 1/2 gallon of milk. Kristen diligently and patiently helped me individually to strengthen my body and mind. I remain working full-time as a healthcare provider. Thank you Kristen!!
Santa Barbara Ca
I’d like everyone thinking about getting in shape to know just how much I have enjoyed working out on the ROM over the last 4 years. Not only did I get my college body back (20 years later), but it saved me a bunch of time not having to spend hours at a traditional smelly gym. Three times a week for 10 minutes each visit was all I needed to look and feel fit. I was even getting compliments on my body from my clients! And thanks too for your expert coaching and cheering which gave me more energy and motivation to push myself to the higher levels on the ROM.
Live A Beautiful Life,
Forever Beautiful Spa
Kristen Williams has been my Pilates and Gyrotonic instructor for over ten years in Santa Barbara and Tina, my wife, for the past several years. We have both had great results in flexibility, strength and endurance (especially in muscles that previously were ignored). I have managed health clubs for 15 years and Kristen’s teaching ability always exceeded expectations. She has the unique ability to custom tailor a personalized program whether working with a world-class athlete or an individual with severe physical limitations. Her engaging personality makes each work out fun. Also, her background knowledge of anatomy and dance is both comprehensive and very useful. As a professional teacher, Tina and I give her the highest recommendation.
Rick & Tina Brown
Kristen is the full package….
* Her dancing career made her sensitive to injuries and gave her the anatomy knowledge to figure out how to modify exercises.
* She’s a task master which is a compliment!
* She has a positive attitude that spills over to her clients.
* She’s sensitive to one’s ups/downs so constantly varies the workout.
* She works with my physical therapist to ensure complementary workouts.
* I can hear her training tips even when I’m not with Kristen!
Kristen helped me for a year before I realized I needed hip surgery. She modified exercises and helped me work with “what I had”. Two hip replacements later, Kristen has been helping me strengthen weak muscles, change muscle memory, and figure out what is “normal” form. She has been helpful, patient, and anxious to find new ways to help and keep me motivated.
I feel blessed to have found such a knowledgeable, flexible, well-rounded Pilates instructor. Now I’m spoiled!
I have been taking Pilates for nearly 15 years now, and12 of those have been with Kristen as my instructor. I have followed her to several different studios over the years, as she is such an excellent “teacher”. But I am sorry to say that driving twice a week to Oregon, just is not going to fit in to my schedule – I and many others here in Santa Barbara, will miss her dearly!
I have multiple sclerosis and Kristen has seen me through thick and thin. She has trained me during MS attacks, and more importantly, has worked with me after the attacks, helping me to work through whatever”residual” deficits I may have had. For example, although she has not been able to correct the partial blindness in my left eye, she always has worked with me to improve my balance, one of my major problems secondary to MS. She constantly reminds me of small”tricks” that I can use throughout the day (even after I leave) to help myself to walk taller, smoother and with more confidence – this has helped me not worry so much about my balance problems, as I always have some tricks up my sleeve!
I also have chronic pain – in my back and neck, as well as, more recently a torn rotator cuff and a broken elbow. Kristen has always tailored our workouts to”fit” my abilities of the day, while at the same time, always is pushing me to go that little bit extra,despite my whining!
Kristen is a very positive person – happy, smiling,”how is your body today?”. She is encouraging, even when you cannot do a move properly or completely, she shows you that you did part of it properly…..and remembers next time to work on it again – to go a little bit farther each time.
Every time I leave her studio, I know that I am two inches taller than when I arrived…….and much more relaxed and happier. I am so sorry to see her leave, but know that her new clients in Oregon will be getting the best instructor they can find!
Donna Kell, MD. 8/25/2013
I have been doing Pilates for over 8 years because I wanted to learn to be flexible and also have good balance. I also play tennis,and my Pilates training has helped me from having any injuries on the tennis court.Pilates training has taught me how to breathe correctly, which I had not been doing correctly. It also helps me to think clearly.I feel lucky to have been introduced to Pilates, and feel that I will continue to benefit both in mind and body. I am so pleased to have Kristen as my instructor. She is my biggest cheerleader, and always makes sure that my technique is correct.
Emi, June 2012
I’ve been training with Kristen at SB Pilates Studio for over 10 years. Kristen is an inspirational and flexible trainer. She has been able to continue to train me through various injuries; always able to adjust the workout to make it work for me. Training with her has transformed my body. She is a compassionate trainer that can push you as hard as you can handle or can adjust it as needed during times of injury. It doesn’t get any better! You will be amazed at what a great workout this is! Thanks Kristen. You’re the best!
Recovering from shoulder and knee surgery was a painful process for me. I’m so thankful to have found Kristen at the SB Pilates Studio.She has helped tremendously with physical routines that have given me back strength in my shoulder and knee. Due to the aging process, I recently started having pain in my hip. Kristen has been able to stop the pain and put me on a program that I believe will prevent any further degeneration in my hip. I’m very grateful for Kristen’s wealth of knowledge in the field of rehabilitation.I highly recommend her to anyone looking to get physically well and staying fit!
~ Jane Walters September15th, 2011 at 3:15 PM
Santa Barbara Pilates & Fitness is the best thing I have ever done for a healthy body!!!! I have tried Nautilus, Yoga, Step Classes, Spin Classes, Weights etc. Kristen’s classes at Santa Barbara Pilates and Fitness have made the biggest difference in my personal fitness. I noticed a big difference in my dancing and skiing. The “core” work she emphasis improved my balance, co-ordination and endurance. She continually challenges me with new exercises. I am never bored.Pilates is the one discipline I have stayed with the longest. It makes a difference in my day to day life. I recently had to stop classes for a family health issue. After several months away from my workouts, I could notice a big decline in my fitness. I am back at Santa Barbara Pilates and Fitness now and I am feeling much better, knowing I am getting back to a healthy body.
~ Lynne Borderre 9-21-2009
Dear All,Pilates is the best workout I have ever experienced. The Santa Barbara Pilates Studio has helped me in so many ways. I value their qualified staff and their professional workout guidance. Kristen and Peter make learning about your body and it’s own special needs, FUN. I have been blessed to be part of this special studio and lucky for all the help they have given, to get me back into shape, strength and health. I can take care of my grandchildren without fatigue and actually now have the strength to pick up my 50 lb grandson, Jack. I truly didn’t have the stamina before Pilates and I felt tired most of the time. Now I feel energized and motivated to loose weight and take better care of myself. I highly recommend the SB Pilates Studio and all that it has to offer. Thank You SB Pilates!!!!!!
~ Mary Lewis, Santa Barbara 6/09
I am an 88 year old client of the S. B. Pilates Studio. I’m convinced that if I hadn’t been doing Pilates for the past 6 years I would be feeling every bit that old. Instead, I feel younger every year–if that’s possible. I love it when Kristen tells me I’m stronger that some of her clients who are half my age. I’m sure going on the ROM is good for my heart, respiration, and leg strength. I keep improving my performance on the ROM, so I’m pleased about that too. I’m very grateful that my daughter and son-in-law insisted that I engage Kristen as my personal trainer. It’s one of the best things that ever did.
~ Lottie White 05/11/09
I’ve been doing Pilates with Kristen for about five year sand it is the therapeutic effect of Pilates which has been most helpful. It seems to take care of those aches and pains – minor and chronic. I walk taller and straighter, have better balance, and feel strong. Kristen’s extensive knowledge about body mechanics makes her a superb teacher. If performing one routine is problematic for a body part, Kristen doesn’t say “ok, we won’t do that today.” Instead she always has an alternate method for accomplishing the same end. Her constant attention to the details of form when doing a routine makes all the difference between a ho-hum workout and outstanding results. And by the way, she has a killer sense of humor.
~ Terry Buss May 30th, 2009 at 7:49 AM
For the past five years Kristen has been our Pilates instructor.Kristen’s expert teaching skills, coupled with her intuitive knowledge about the nuances of Pilates make her an excellent and unique Pilates instructor.She is 110% dedicated to the progress of each and every one of her clients.It is truly an honor to be instructed by a teacher so knowledgeable and dedicated.We have personally experienced a tremendous change in our bodies and well being,as a result of being coached and instructed by Kristen. We strongly recommend Kristen to anyone who is considering a Pilates program.
~ Mel and Marilyn Manalis 1/18/08
I have been working with Kristen for 5 years. Before moving to Santa Barbara from Orange County in 2001, I took Pilates with several different teachers, some of them excellent. Kristen ranks right up there with the very best. She knows Pilates inside and out, including many different ways to reach the same set of muscles. Whenever I have an issue with a part of my body (feet, back, etc.), Kristen knows just how to work around that and in many cases, how to relieve the pain by careful stretching. She is all business, and gently convinces her clients to work hard and get the most out of their sessions. I recommend her highly!
~ Konnie Gault 8/01/08
“Excellent Pilates instruction!Three years ago I had difficulty standing up out of a chair without using my arms to help me. Now not only can I stand easily, but I can do so properly. My overall strength and balance have improved considerably because of my Pilates training with Kristen.Using her ROM machine has greatly improved my aerobic function. Also, eight months ago I had a terrible fall and shattered my shoulder blade into six pieces while walking my two large dogs. Once my scapula was healed,I found that my muscles had atrophied considerably. Kristen’s expertise has enabled me to regain my muscle tone and strength. I am very grateful for her experience and professionalism. She is a highly competent instructor, and I would recommend her to anyone who wants to improve his or her quality of life. “
~ Andy Gault 7/01/08
“For those like myself in need of regular exercise I can think of no better way to do it than to get training from the Santa Barbara Pilates Studio on De La Vina Street near State. Kristen Williams and her staff,are highly skilled in adjusting the training level to the client whoever he, or she, is. In my case at the age of ninety one I have a carefully thought out routine by Kristen, that loosens the joints, gives tone to the muscles, and altogether refreshes a body which time and sedentary living weaken and age. I leave the studio feeling alive, and ready for the days before my next session. I shall test the ROM machine in the studio for further aerobic exercise. As an alumnus of old Joe Pilates, the founder, when I lived in New York City in the Fifties, I can vouch for the excellence of the training at the Santa Barbara Pilates Studio.
Joe Pilates would give his seal of approval for the work being done there. “
~ George Gaynes, Actor. (Police Academy, Punky Brewster,Tootsie and more) 6/28/08
“The combination of the flexible hours the ROM is offered, the studio’s close proximity to the Samarkand neighborhood, and getting a full body workout in 8 minutes create a surefire environment for motivating one to start AND continue exercising. No matter how busy I am, I can’t say that I don’t have 8 minutes to exercise! In addition, the result shave been visible and having Peter & Kristen watching your form and cheering you on makes for a fun and supportive environment. My challenge to you is to come in and try it for yourself! “
~ Jeanette on Samarkand Drive, Santa Barbara. 04/24/08
“After being thrown from my horse I suffered from chronic back problems . Kristen and her staff tailored a Pilates program to build my back strength, which enabled me to avoid surgery. The Pilates program has greatly improved my horseback riding as well as my overall health, posture and balance. Pilates has become an indispensable part of my life, and if I miss a few weeks due to vacations, I really notice it and can’t wait to get back to the Studio. I have been taking Pilates from Kristen for about six years now.”
~ Barbara McMullin 03/08/04
“Kristen Williams skill as a Pilates trainer has enabled me to return to work in spite of formerly disabling injuries. It was obvious in a few sessions that she was helping my entire body not just focusing on the painful spots. My doctor enthusiastically encourages me to continue. I feel younger and no longer use pain killers, muscle relaxants, antispasmodics, and far less decongestant because of better breathing. There is nothing better than feeling good. If they call what Kristen and her staff at the Santa Barbara Pilates Studio teaches Pilates, then I like Pilates!”
~ Tom Hawkins 01/04/01