CORE Testimonials:

“Pilates returned the confidence in myself that was lost while healing a fractured  foot. Karen provide thoughtful, individualized instruction, demonstrations, and encouragement with each session. My posture, balance, and gait has improved. Her person-centered session, beautiful smile, energy, and professional demeanor makes each session so enjoyable. I am ecstatic about each session and leave fully energized. Rising in the morning with less difficulty. Karen you are magnificent!”


“It is no coincidence I’m sure that following my session with you last Thursday, I happened to have a lesson, including video swing analysis at Golftec.  The pro I worked with said that my turn, measured in degrees, was much improved over the last time he measured me.  THAT is amazing – I haven’t been practicing!  So, I’m quite sure it was related to the arm & should exercises that you had me work on.  So the bottom line is that Core Pilates helps me maintain and improve my turn in the golf swing – a critical element in golf and a very good thing – thank you!”

– Hank K.

“Karen provides much more than just Pilates. She has improved my posture, gait and approach to exercise. What physical therapy and personal trainers missed or did not completely address, Karen filled in the spaces in a unified way. Her evaluations are spot on and she knows how to communicate the best way to move. She’s very personable and fun to work with.”

– M. Gary

“I started training with Karen Roodman before I had knee surgery to hopefully make recovery better. Without a doubt Karen is very informative about the body and muscle groups and I have been very satisfied with recovery and continual education on my behalf. She treats each person as an individual and is constantly changing my routine to accommodate my needs at each session.”

– Polly Cowling

“Core Pilates is about wellness, fitness, stretching and strengthening. I have been a pilates student for about 6 years. I decided to come to Core Pilates for a more personal evaluation of my fitness needs. Starting with my first session, with Karen Roodman, I knew I was in the right place. I have now had private sessions with Karen for about 7 months. Karen made a thorough evaluation and personalized the routine according to my needs. Not only did Karen understand how to approach my fitness program, but her sincere, professional and expert knowledge allowed me to be challenged and increase my strength. Before I began my Pilates sessions I was being evaluated by my doctor for knee pain I was experiencing. Karen could tell at my initial evaluation that I was compensating for the pain I was having in my knee. The exercises Karen designed for me helped with the pain and swelling. My doctor finally requested an MRI which showed a torn tendon. I then went to an Orthopedist and needed surgery. During this time Karen continued to tailor my needs to my condition. BUT… it was after surgery that I was helped the most. I returned to Pilates and received such wonderful help in stretching and strengthening my knee that 3 weeks after surgery I am almost pain free and the range of motion in my knee is better with every session. I have been a firm believer in the fitness approach to Pilates, but now I see how imperative it can be to regain lost strength due to an injury. After every session I feel so good, relieved of soreness and pain. ”

– Maria

“I contacted Core Pilates for help with my hips. I was in constant pain for 5 months. My career puts a lot of strain on my hips, and I have never learned how to stand correctly. Karen Roodman has been able to teach me how to strengthen my entire body to help support it and keep it functioning. I am able to work pain free now, and know I have a long, strong career ahead of me!”

– Catherine

“Each class is like a treasure hunt in which new muscles are discovered. Familiar muscles find better ways to work together — a feat that requires focusing the mind. You leave feeling two inches taller, one inch narrower, smoother in your movements, and more balanced in thought and posture. ”

– Kristin

“Thank you for all you have done for me over the past few years. I was recently in rural Hawaii and it was a very physical trip with a lot of backpacking, hiking, camping and kayaking. We actually took a similar trip about 5 years ago to Arizona (pre-Pilates), and the physical differences I could feel in my body were striking. My balance, flexibility, strength, body awareness and ability to focus on physical tasks at hand were so much better than they had been five years ago. I think, in routine day-to-day life, the benefits from Pilates are certainly visible, but in the setting I was in, the differences were striking. I made it a point to try to do some mat Pilates moves every few days, and even taught the “ab series” to my friend and her brother. The physical changes I’ve gained from Pilates are just one part of the equation, however. You have been so kind to me over these past few years, and I have so appreciated your knowledge and warmth. Please accept my great appreciation for the role you have played in my life in these past few years.”

– Alison E

“I have done Pilates in the past on a mat and at home, but I had so many different teachers and they all gave me different information and instructions. After a 2 year hiatus, I found Core Pilates of Richmond. Karen Roodman has been my teacher, and I have had a private class with her once a week for nearly 2 years. I am a middle aged person soon to be 50 and I have never felt better! My posture, breathing and sleep have all improved significantly. I no longer have daily aches and pains. I am much more mindful of where my body is in space (proprioception) and I have mastered exercises that I did not think my shoulder joints could handle. Before I met Karen, I had to have steroid injections in both of my shoulders and I do not want to have any more if I could avoid it! As of today, I don’t think I will need any more shots – just MORE Pilates!”

– Kieran C, MD

“Pilates has really helped my lower back pain. Since I began taking private sessions at Core Pilates with Karen Roodman, my back has become stronger, and I have had fewer occurrences of back pain. Over the years, I have tried various methods of reducing lower back pain, but nothing has worked better than Pilates, and the results have been lasting. Karen has taught me exercises in the studio and also devised a home program for me which I can do at home or on the road. My experience with Karen has been excellent. She tweaked my private sessions to meet my needs, and every session was different, which I really enjoyed. I never knew exactly what to expect but I knew that whatever we did would be intentional, purposeful and beneficial for me. Karen understands how the body works, knows the Pilates method well and is consistently looking for ways to learn more and grow as an instructor. My investment was well worth it!!”

– Scott

“I had dabbled in Pilates for years, both by attending large group mat classes and following DVDs at home. It was something I could feel my body strongly responding to, but was never quite as satisfying as I would have liked. And then I began working at Core Pilates, on the Reformer, with Karen – and that changed everything. Karen’s instruction is so encompassing – she intently watches me work, making certain I practice every exercise – every movement – precisely correctly. Her intention is simple: that I not only receive the maximum benefit for my effort, but that I also learn how to move my body in a way that will make it work for me and not invite injury. And that is my greatest gift from Karen; it is the thing that has given me the freedom to pursue any physical activity with confidence. I have attended Core Pilates for years, and my spine and I could not be more satisfied!”

– Sema

“Core Pilates has changed my life! After years of physical therapy for chronic pain from injuries to my neck and back, in addition to two shoulder surgeries, I could barely move… Through Pilates, I feel years younger and I am now addicted to it. I thoroughly enjoy [the] classes…”

– Sylvia

“I’ve tried a lot of exercise trends over the years, and I’ve never found anything as effective as Pilates. After practicing Pilates for over 5 years, I know it will be an exercise that I practice for life – because of the results I’ve seen and also because I just love it! … My current instructor, Karen Roodman, is the best! She is passionate about what she does and takes special care and attention to cater to your specific needs and fitness goals. I look forward to my lesson every week.”

– Julie

“After being away from Pilates for a couple of weeks, I enter the studio hunched over, stiff, and feeling twice my age. I leave with a bounce in my step, and feeling half my age. After 2 surgeries for scoliosis, I was scared to do anything with my back that may lead to further surgery. This resulted in being weak and stiff and curved over. Karen has a great understanding of what my abilities and inabilities are, and she is insistent that I do the movements precisely, making me feel comfortable that I am not going to hurt myself. Now, several months later, I walk briskly down the street, upright, ala Mary Tyler Moore. I can stand at a social event and actually participate rather than sitting down in the corner with the old folks. I can sleep without waking up in the morning with a stiff neck, and I feel overall happier and more engaged. I am committed to Pilates!”

– Hazel Vernon, MD

“I am a 59-year-old woman with scoliosis, chronic bad posture, and a history of being intermittently physically active. I began Pilates after seeing a candid photo of myself. I’ve been working with Karen for about 18 months and she has been a wonderful teacher for me. Karen has an amazing ability to explain movements to someone like me – a novice without confidence in her body. Even more importantly, Karen understands my body mechanics at a level I have never before experienced. Because I have so little “body confidence”, I can be easily discouraged when I’m unable to practice basic movements that are easy for many others. Karen combines her technical expertise with a loving, enthusiastic attitude that pushes me without leaving me discouraged. She is a perfect teacher for me. ”

– Karla Curtis

“I was referred to Karen by my doctor. At that time, I had been struggling with a back injury from the previous year. After going through physical therapy, I had gained mobility, but still had pain and weakness in my left hip, hamstring, and calf. I was at a loss as to where to begin working out again. Karen showed me the way. Through all of her knowledge and experience, she developed a program that worked with my injuries and my body type to build strength and flexibility. Karen continually encouraged me with her positive “never give up” attitude. As a result, I have made great improvements. Thank you!!!”

– Beth P

“I have happily been a Core Pilates of Richmond student for a year now! My initial interest was to refresh my skills and technique on the mat, but I very quickly learned that private sessions on the Reformer were exactly what I needed!! I have had 4 back surgeries. I am fused from L1-S1. Karen’s devotion to the practice of Pilates – and her desire to help me with my specific issues – was obvious from our first meeting. Every session is structured and tailored for me and what my needs are on any given day. (And the studio is wonderful!) She takes such good care to ensure she has the best equipment and incorporates so many different props – I learn something new every week!!! Core Pilates is invested in me, and it has truly made an impact in my overall health and well-being.”

– Carol M

“I have had an amazing experience working with Karen on the Reformer. Her knowledge and attention to detail have helped me tremendously in my recovery from spinal fusion back surgery. I have not experienced any pain whatsoever! Also, just three weeks prior to my back surgery, I gave birth to my second daughter and am shocked that after all of that physical turmoil I am already back to my pre-pregnancy weight. Karen customizes my sessions to fit my needs perfectly. She truly cares about her clients and it shows. I always look forward to working with her and can’t thank her enough for all that she has done for me.”-

– Nicole L

“My experience working at Core Pilates with Karen Roodman was wonderful. Karen is a true professional and an excellent teacher. Her careful and precise teaching helped me be mindful of correct form so that I might avoid injury and get maximum benefit from every exercise. She is a Pilates Perfectionist but does it with such warmth, humor, and enthusiasm that my time with her passes quickly and is just plain fun.”

– Sallie T

“Karen is a gifted and talented teacher. Her ability to individualize programs to help students maximize their Pilates experience has helped me tremendously. Not only have I gained strength, balance and flexibility, but also my back problems are significantly improved. I am fortunate to have Karen as my Pilates teacher.”

– Valerie P

“The reformer instruction has been very helpful to me. I am aware of my weak areas and can focus on improvement. It has enabled me to get more out of the mat classes. I feel it was a very worthwhile experience and highly recommend it!”

– Michelle F

“I have been working with Karen since January 2008 and I can’t believe the difference! I am stronger than I thought possible and my hip/lower back problems have gone away. Karen works hard to get to know each client’s strengths and weaknesses. She knows me so well that she can tell what I can do and when I am tired before I say anything. I am well on my way to a stronger and healthier life and it is all due to Karen!”

– Kammy Hambrick

“After my former Pilates teacher teacher moved away and I needed to find a new teacher, I was referred by my Physical Therapist to Core Pilates to help improve my chronic hip problem. Since I have been taking classes from Karen Roodman starting in January of 2008, I have had no reoccurance of hip pain and have found that my knee problems have resolved. My rotator cuff muscles feel stronger and the inflamation in my shoulder has improved. I have been very pleased with Karen’s Stott Pilates method of teaching and pleasantly surprised with my accomplishments to learn it. Karen’s encouragement has meant everything to me. I really wish I could come more often.”

– Monette Wood, M.D.

“Pilates has changed my life. Through Pilates, I have experienced a more balanced, stretched and stronger body. I have lost 26 pounds, and I feel so much better and healthier. I love working on the reformer with Karen, who is an excellent instructor, supportive and intuitive with knowing what is best for me. If I could, I would come every day! I love it!”

– Karen Hope

“Karen runs a very professional Pilates and yoga studio… She is quite knowledgeable in the practice of Pilates and how each move/step will benefit each of her clients. I highly recommend Karen and her studio to others!”

– Abby F

“The entire Pilates journey for me has been an amazing experience. I attribute a lot of it to your professionalism, commitment to excellence and ability to hire and motivate great teachers. You and your team really make it a quality experience. I continue to see improvements in myself and sometimes surprise myself with things I can do now that I never thought I could! Thanks for the gift of your teaching.”

– Karen Huddle

“Pilates has helped me feel and look better. Six years ago, I had back surgery. I had been through all types of Physical Therapy. I found the excercises on the Reformer to be very helpful with regaining my strength. Pilates has improved the quality of my life in that I am more mobile. I can see the muscles in my stomach and shoulders. I am constantly thinking about my posture and keeping my body in allignment. I love the mat classes. It is great for me to only think of myself during class and forget my worries and get into shape. I tell everyone about Pilates!”

– Pamela Trimmer

“This is the best studio I have found in years, and I have lived in several different cities.”

– Rachel

“I began Pilates five months ago with the simple goal of improving my posture for my wedding six weeks later. I expected minor results that would seamlessly lead me back into my excuse filled, stationary lifestyle. What I didn’t expect was not only continuing the classes after the wedding, but increasing the number of classes I took each week. I’ve seen such wonderful results (I’ve realized for the first time in my life that I was actually born with muscles), and the constant enthusiasm that Karen…provides never lets you down or makes you feel embarrassed. I’ve happily redistributed my weight and I look forward to each of the three classes I take per week. Gyms and videos just can’t compare to the personal attention you receive at Core Pilates, and I promise they aren’t nearly as fun.”

– Meg Rosaletti

“WOW! What a difference the refomer makes for me! I’ve noticed huge results in a very short time. My clothes feel so loose. I continue to feel that Pilates provides me a stress release. For me, the individual attention, the necessity of maintaining proper form and the expertise, really packs a punch in my routine. Each session is individualized to my needs with great respect for my limitations from former orthopedic injuries. I would recommend the reformer to anyone. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT!”

– Allison Martin

“I have enjoyed taking classes at Core Pilates. All of the instructors absolutely fabulous and I have spoken highly of Core Pilates to everyone I know. My running times have improved and I no longer have knee or back pain after a long run.”

– Lee Ann Heinz

“As someone who was looking middle age in the face and not liking it, I decided that exercising on my own wasn’t getting me where I needed to be. For several years, I had been reading about Pilates and how many of the Hollywood stars kept fit through Pilates. So when a physician told me about Karen Roodman and Core Pilates, I thought I’d give it a try.

Starting at the elementary level, despite the fact that I was in a class of at least 10 other people, Karen always made it seem as though I was receiving one-on-one instruction. Always with a positive, cheerleading attitude, Karen pushed me, albeit gently, to challenge myself physically – always mindful to make certain I was executing all of the movements correctly. Although I couldn’t keep up the pace in the beginning, gradually I mastered the basic moves and eventually graduated to the next level.

It has been over 18 months since starting Pilates with Karen Roodman and I can say without hesitation that she and Pilates have changed my life. Not only am I over all stronger and more balanced, but my core muscles are quite strong and my range of motion is tremendously improved. Because I have learned to align my body and move correctly, I no longer suffer from daily headaches. Further, because I have mastered many of the classic Pilates moves, I gained a tremendous amount of confidence and energy. And one more thing. Over time, I have forged a bond not only with Karen, but a sense of sisterhood and camaraderie with my classmates.”

– Pamela McElrath

“Core Pilates with Karen has been a wonderful change to my workout routine.I used to suffer from lower back pain, and through Karen’s classes I’ve been able to strengthen my lower back, improving my posture and relieving my back pain. In addition, I’ve been able to tone and shape my abs and butt areas like never before. Karen’s enthusiasm and knowledge have made a huge difference in my progress, and her ability to keep things fresh, and change up classes have been keys to my success.”

– Katie Berkman

“In Pilates, I have found that I can concentrate on the core muscles that are required for everyday life, and I am also able to perform more advanced moves with whitewater kayaking (my hobby). As a Hand Therapist, I find myself recommending Pilates classes with Karen to so many people. I work with people on their posture to prevent further injury, and from taking Pilates I am able to strengthen my treatment planning. Karen has a fabulous understanding of anatomy and her energy is addictive, which makes her the best instructor.”

– Sejal Shah

“Pilates has become one of the keys to my health. It has become something I make time for. It helps with tension and lower back pain. I am a stomach sleeper who has always had lower back pain, and Pilates has strengthened my core so my back hurts less. The breathing relaxes me so I slow down. In the past I have had a lot of neck and shoulder tension that would need to be massaged out, but since taking Pilates the tension is gone!!!”

– Kay Sherin

“Pilates has helped me feel stronger, more flexible and capable. Karen has been very informative and inspirational!After each class I am so happy, relaxed and energized. Consistency gets faster results. I wish I had time for three classes a week instead of two.”

– Lael Edmonds

“There has never been an exercise I have enjoyed more than Pilates. It is challenging without being hard on my body, and has given me relatively quick results: I dropped 2 pants sizes in 4-5 months!!! I love the mental tranquility and relaxation as I go from movement to movement. I have seen benefits in other sports that I participate in, such as running and horseback riding, and I have never had such good posture as I do now!!!

– Cindi Highfill

“Karen’s Pilates classes have been a superb strengthening and toning workout for my body, which has become sleeker and stronger as a result. Her teaching style is structured and supportive. Her classes, subtly different each time, are taught with attention to all levels, and are always challenging and fun.”

– Sarah Prince

“Pilates is the first exercise program that I have stuck with faithfully. Karen is enthusiastic, motivational, fun and obviously enjoys not only doing Pilates, but also helping others learn to do it right. I was so excited the day I looked in the mirror and realized that I had a “Pilates butt.” My posture has improved, my flexibility continues to improve, my abs are getting tighter, and my overall health, mood and attitude have improved! I love that Karen is flexible with classes and still challenges everyone regardless of their level. I am so glad that I started Pilates. It is a challenging workout without the stress on the joints. I feel that I have found not only an exercise program that I can (and will) stick with, but also a great friend and mentor in Karen!”

– Nancy Becker

“From Pilates, my strength has increased, stamina for my garden work has increased, and my energy level has improved. Even more amazingly, though, is how the whole process has changed my attitude about me! It is so satisfying personally to face difficult tasks and conquer them on a weekly basis. Instead of seeing myself lose strength and flexibility as I age, I feel I’m doing something to reverse that process. Getting older can offer some wonderful freedoms and advantages. I want to stay as fit as I can for as long as I can to enjoy them thoroughly.”

– Ellen Armstrong

“Pilates taught me the right way to do abs and correct my posture. Without a doubt, I would recommend Pilates because it makes you feel great during and after class! Karen makes Pilates a fun and entertaining class!”

– Shawn Oliveria

“My core is stronger and I feel stronger all over! I feel three inches taller and my abs look great!! A coach told me once ‘practice makes perfect’ but I believe that perfect practice makes perfect!!”

– Jonnell Robertson

“I’ve never felt better and never felt better about the way I look! It is a wonderful, relaxing, invigorating and overall WONDERFUL workout! Consistency is key! The more you do it, the better you feel!”

– Heather Schroeder

“I’m surprised at the changes in my body as a result of Pilates. Phenomenal results – stronger, better balance, more focused – overall I just feel healthier. Beyond the physical improvement, it has helped with stress levels. I owe a lot of the results to Karen, who is very modest about her ability to teach Pilates. She meets each student where she is and makes her feel good – no matter the level!”

– Linda Martin

“I am more aware of my posture. Pilates is great for balance and flexibility for your body – it keeps you firm. Consistency is important!”

– Kathy Gideon

“Pilates has increased my flexibility and assisted with weight loss and firming up. I am now able to tolerate longer hours of activity and increase the intensity of those activities. Pilates has also given me a greater feeling of well being.”

– Brenda Ford

“Karen is so positive about body conditioning and core strengthening. I have found her willing to work with individuals on each set of instructions. I have made gains in strengthening my core muscles and have improved my flexibility and balance all while having fun with Karen. I would suggest that anyone who is willing to do some body strengthening should give her classes a try. Everyone in her classes seem to love her and the professional instruction she gives is most beneficial!”

– Sue Lough

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