For 17 years, Jenna Morris studied dance in Yuma, training with master ballet teachers Pavel Romanyuk and Erika Farrar. That work helped Jenna become strong and lean, with an understanding of technique and movement.
She keeps in shape and form through the practice of Pilates.
“I haven’t lost anything I’ve worked so hard for,” said Jenna, who has opened Jenna’s Pilates and Dance Co., on Dove Mountain. “It’s strengthening, toning, flexibility and balance, and core work. All that is great for dancers. It’s great for everyone.”
Morris began the study of Pilates three years ago. She attended a Las Vegas seminar, “tried it and just fell in love. I had to find an instructor.”
She found master teacher John White, who learned from master instructor Romana Kryzanowska, who was initiated by Joseph and Clara Pilates.
“It was important for him to carry on the legacy of Joseph Pilates in its true form,” Jenna’s mother Teresa Moedl said. Morris’ Pilates emphasis is “more of a lyrical style of Pilates,” she said. “It flows.” Fitness, strength and balance are the objectives. Joseph Pilates believed in good rest, eating properly and lean muscle, fit but not bulky, Moedl said.
White is “really good,” Morris said. For two years, he put her through “pretty intense” training, with 500 total hours of initial instruction, observation and teaching. Morris is now a master teacher. With regular consultation, White is “making sure she’s still growing,” Moedl said.
Jenna’s Pilates has been open some 18 months, working with individual clients in a home studio. “I love it,” Jenna said.
Jenna and her husband Roy “want to have kids,” but she also wants to be “that stay at home mom.”
So an 11-by-18-foot, one-car garage at the Morris family home has been transformed into a Pilates studio. Heat and air conditioning were installed, along with the specialized Pilates equipment – the ladder barrel, Morris’s favorite the reformer, the Cadillac, the spine corrector and the Wunda / S chair. There are mirrors on the walls, the floor is thickly carpeted, and windows are either tinted or covered.
“It works great,” Morris said. “All my clients love it.”
Most of Morris’s clients are one-on-one with the instructor. “I can do two, but I prefer teaching one-on-one. I can watch the client more, and make sure they do everything right,” she said.
“She has a really good eye for proper form,” Moedl said.
“It’s so important to do the exercise correctly,” Morris said.
Morris evaluates a client during an initial, beginning-level session. “I want to see where the strengths are, and where they’re weak. Some have limitations.” She’ll then prepare a routine and a schedule for those clients.
She hopes clients come to the studio at least twice a week. Sessions are about an hour.
Sessions are “just peaceful, nice and relaxing. We laugh, we have a great time. It makes me feel good inside to help them get stronger. They come in and say ‘I feel it, I’m getting stronger.’”
“Once people meet her, they love her,” Morris’s proud mom said. “The main thing is getting people over to meet Jenna and see what she has to offer.”
Packages are $250 for six private classes, or $60 per session. Students, people in the military and seniors get a 10 percent discount. Some free trials are available.
Scheduling is flexible. “I’m really open,” Morris said. “I try to work with my clients.”
Jenna’s Pilates and Dance Co.
Pilates, Pilates mat classes, ballet, jazz, lyrical and choreography lessons
Monday through Saturday