An interview with Corinne Dawson, owner of The Pilates Workshop in Libertyville.
Q: Describe your business. What do you do?
A: The Pilates Workshop is a studio where people can work one-on-one with a veteran Pilates instructor, on the best equipment, to get a true Pilates experience. Pilates helps people who want to work on postural alignment, pelvic and spinal stability, and flexibilty. Joseph Pilates created a system of movement and a collection of spring-based equipment to create balance within the body. Pilates helps athletes move more efficiently, new moms recover the power in their centers, and brings everyone a stronger core. The Pilates Workshop will offer Classical Pilates small group mat classes upon request and topical workshops at the studio.
Q: What made you start your business?
A: I recently moved with my family back home to Lake County after living and teaching in the city for the last 15 years. I have helped build some of the best Pilates studios in the Midwest. I am excited to pass along a high quality and true Pilates experience to the Lake County community.
Q: What has been the most difficult obstacle in running or starting a small business?
A: Pilates has gotten more popular in the recent years. Sometimes that has led to a lack of understanding of the depth of the work of Joseph Pilates. Pilates cannot be learned from a DVD, and instructors should train and apprentice for years before they are considered high quality trainers. If someone is interested in studying Pilates, they should only trust their bodies to someone who is excellent. I love helping people go deeper into their Pilates practice and apply the principles of balance and efficiency to their bodies and their lives.
Q: What do you enjoy most about operating your business?
A: It makes my day to hear a client share how their work in the Pilates studio has enhanced their lives. Sometimes it is the lack of back pain, a better time in a race, or finally feeling those deep lower stomach muscles!
Q: Is this what you pictured yourself doing when you were young? When you were young, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: I studied dance as a kid here in Libertyville, and performed in college and professionally through my 20's. I have always been moving: running, biking, dance, yoga, and of course, Pilates. I couldn't have a job where I sit all day, and love passing along my love of movement. Pilates is a discipline all about alignment, control, body awareness, and concentration, and centering. I bumped into Pilates 20 years ago and it suits me perfectly.
Q: What keeps you up at night?
A: My two young children!
Q: If you could give one tip to a rookie business owner, what would it be?
A: After I studied Pilates, apprenticed, and trained with the best, it was helpful for me to work for other studios for many years. That time allowed me to build relationships and develop myself professionally. You can feel confident about opening up your own business after learning from the successes and the failures of those who have gone before you.
- Kim Mikus
• We feature a small, suburban business every Monday. We want to hear about yours. Contact Kim Mikus at firstname.lastname@example.org.