Lara Garda , Studio Director
In her 29 years of professional fitness management and group fitness training Lara Garda has worked to bring positive energy and motivation to both team members and clients. She strives to provide a fun, safe and effective workout experience with every visit.
As the Studio Director for CORE Pilates & Yoga, Lara holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physical Education, Sports and Nutrition. She is a PMA certified Pilates Teacher with trainings from Stott®, Peak®, Balanced Body® and The Pilates Coach. On the fitness spectrum, Lara is an ACE Certified Group Fitness Instructor. After running two marathons Lara searched for an active workout that was much kinder to her body and discovered her true love and passion in Yoga. Lara began teaching with YogaFit® in 1999 and has eagerly pursued many educational experiences. She completed her 200-hour RYT with the organization of Integrative Yoga Therapy in 2002 and is now an E-RYT. Rounding out her fitness, Lara is a Yoga Shred inspired instructor combining HIIT Training with Yoga and she recently became a Barefoot Training Specialist!
Jill is originally from the Pittsburgh area and after high school she took a brave new step and moved to Alaska! She graduated from the University of Alaska, Anchorage. Returning to Pittsburgh as a computer analyst she quickly realized that working behind a desk did not mesh with her adventurous spirit and outgoing personality. With a love for fitness and desire to lead an active lifestyle she dove into the health and fitness industry teaching group fitness and personal training. It was along this path that she discovered Pilates. Jill has been teaching Pilates for 13 years. She is a PMA Certified Pilates Instructor as well as a 200-hour Yoga Alliance Approved Yoga Instructor. Her many other fitness trainings include: Peak Pilates, Kickboxing and Personal Training. Count on Jill to deliver a cutting edge workout that will challenge you from the inside out!
Nancy has been a client at Core since its opening in 2008. Recognizing the positive impact of Pilates, she completed the 450-Hour Pilates Teacher Training thru ZenLates Training Systems offered exclusively at Core Pilates & Yoga and is now a fully-comprehensive Pilates Teacher as recognized by the Pilates Method Alliance. Nancy enjoys participating in many activities including yoga, spinning, weight training, golf, tennis and the occasional weeding in her garden! Nancy works full time in the investment management business and is available for training in the evenings and weekends. Her attention to detail and time management skills provide a comprehensive workout for Core clients.
Caitlin started practicing Pilates 7 years ago after a running injury left her with severe back pain. She fell in love the Pilates system and the way it made her feel strong and balanced. She credits Pilates with helping her to stay in shape and strong through both her pregnancies and after. After a few years as a stay at home mom, Caitlin decided to become certified as an instructor and completed her training through the Power Pilates 600-hour Comprehensive Program and went on to achieve her Pilates Method Alliance Certification. She loves the feeling a Pilates lesson gives her and hopes to share that with her clients as they start and expand their Pilates journey. She hopes to learn and grow with her clients and help them experience all the wonderful and amazing things their bodies can do!
Beth lives in Wexford with her husband, two children. She started out as a competitive runner and moved through various exercise crazes trying as many as possible. She found true love in Pilates, and has completed her Teacher Training thru ZenLates Training Systems, which integrates Pilates with Yoga and Fitness – the exclusive training program offered in-house at Core Pilates & Yoga. Beth is currently studying for her PMA National Exam.
Beth is also an elementary teacher in the North Allegheny School District and the Kids of Steel representative for McKnight Elementary School bringing the chance to increase nutrition and fitness to over 800 students! She is able to tap into her extensive background in education to teach others this fabulous fitness training method. Beth is excited to help you attain your fitness goals and feel energized and healthier!
Cathy brings over 20 years of group fitness experience from cardio to strength and flexibility training. Her certifications include AFAA- Group Fitness; Spinning; Resist-a-Ball; Flexibility Training; Yoga; PHI Pilates Mat Work and; CORE’s signature ZenLates Training- Pilates Based Movement Reformer 1, 2, Tower, Chair and Ladder Barrel. Cathy is an avid sport enthusiast with a history of competitive racing from road races to sprint triathlons. When she is not actively training and teaching, Cathy is trying to keep up with her five children! Her most recent accomplishments have been helping keep a number of pregnant moms strong and well trained for delivery! Cathy brings a customized workout to athletes, beginners, prenatal and the aging community. With each encounter she always strives to bring out the inner best in each client!
Betty Jo Thaman
Betty Jo comes to Core with 30+ years of professional experience in the fitness industry. She is ACE certified as a Personal Trainer specializing in pre/postnatal, post-rehab, cancer survivors, and clients with arthritis. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Marshall University (Huntington, WV). Betty Jo began teaching Pilates mat in 2000 and reformer in 2004 with training from PHI Pilates, Pilates Coach, and Peak Pilates MVe Fitness Chair. She also has yoga training through AAAI-ISMA and YogaFit®.
Her specialty lies in training beginners, older adults, and those with issues or limitations that need a slower, calmer approach. Her experience affords her the ability to deliver a personal touch offering modifications for the beginner to more advanced movements for those who like to” kick it up a notch” and challenge themselves.