Laura Porter Blackburn
Laura Porter Blackburn was born and raised in Louisville KY. She matriculated at Brown University in Providence, RI and later received a Master's of Arts and Humanities in Dance and Theatre from SUNY Buffalo, focusing on Contact Improvisation (a form of postmodern dance in which points of physical contact between two dancers and the earth provide the starting point for exploration through movement improvisation) and mixed-media live art installations. After 4 years of studying Pilates in Buffalo, NY and with Deborah Lessen in NYC, and a year of kinesthetic anatomy with Irene Dowd, Laura moved to Boulder, CO to enter the Teacher Training Program at The Pilates Center. She earned her certificate of completion from TPC’s Teacher Training Program in 2000.
She then relocated to Paris, France, where she co-opened Centre Pilates de Paris in 2001. There she also met her husband Gionatan Surrenti who also practices, performs and teaches Contact Improvisation. In September 2003, they moved to Orvieto, Italy, where Laura continued her own movement practice of CI and Pilates, developing concepts behind “Movement Education toward True Health” and opening her own small studio, called Core Fluency Pilates. During this time in Orvieto, Laura and her husband also home-birthed their two children, Maya and Mattia Surrenti.
In early 2009, Laura and her family moved home to Louisville. Laura continued to evolve “Core Fluency Pilates: Movement Education toward True Health” to include newer concepts—‘alive as we are meant,’ ‘stewardship of the body and stewardship of the planet,’ ‘replace ambition with curiosity,’ ‘tension masks sensation,’ ‘the small dance we do with the equipment.’ This work continues to inspire her to awaken the full potential to THRIVE in the human body, and in the surrounding community.
In July 2011, Laura opened Core Fluency Pilates in the Clifton Neighborhood, realizing a dream to create a teaching center for the classical Pilates work in Louisville. Shortly thereafter, she became a Pilates Method Alliance certified teacher, completed TPC’s Master’s program, and in 2013 became a TPC Host Advisor to help mentor trainees through the myriad TPC training programs. Laura is CPR certified and can teach Pilates Italian, French and English.
Lauren has been a leader in the fitness scene for over a decade teaching in New York, Los Angeles, and Austin. This Louisville native is thrilled to finally return home and be a part of the Louisville Pilates and movement community.
As a former dancer and BFA graduate Lauren has always been drawn to movement. After college she quickly received her NASM personal training and 200 hour Yoga Alliance certifications and began training clients privately. In 2009 she was one of SoulCycle’s - NYC’s premiere indoor cycling studio - first instructors. She helped open SoulCycle studios all over the country and expanded the company’s teacher training program from 2009-2017.
During her career as an indoor cycling instructor she experienced a lower back injury that helped introduce her to Pilates. She became instantly hooked. Lauren loved the one on one attention, the small group classes, and how pilates helped alleviate fatigue and imbalance her body had been experiencing for years.
She joined a 600 hour classical Pilates certification and apprenticeship with Amanda Vernor of Somaspace while living in Austin Texas.
She is thrilled to join the Core Fluency team!
Ashley Thursby Kern
Ashley Thursby Kern received her training through Lotus Pilates in Bloomington, IN during her time at Indiana University. She completed her comprehensive Pilates Teacher Certiﬁcation Program with training based on the original methods of Joseph H. Pilates. Ashley began Pilates at the age of 9 as a supplement to her focus in dance. Once she felt the effects of what Pilates had to offer, she knew that she wanted to learn more so that she could share the beneﬁts of Pilates with others through teaching. Currently an Artist with the Louisville Ballet, Ashley’s passion is to work with moving bodies through Core Fluency’s new ‘Mend the Gap’ program. This specialized program for dancers will allow moving artists of all disciplines to improve imbalances within their bodies in their efforts to become a stronger dancer.
Monica Taylor is a native of Oaxaca, Mexico who always loved movement and fitness. She graduated from the Rio Grande Institute and later moved to Chicago, IL where she received her Masters of Arts in Intercultural Studies from the Moody Graduate School.
It was in Chicago that Monica was introduced to the Pilates Method through a friend who recommended Pilates for her back problems. Monica was hooked on Pilates from her first session and it was not long until she began noticing the positive benefits of Pilates in her body.
Monica began her Pilates education in 2005. In 2009 she received her Comprehensive Pilates Certification (Mat, Standing and Apparatus) with the PhysicalMind Institute based out of NYC.
While living in New Orleans, she was introduced to Classical Pilates, and since then she has been committed to preserving Joseph Pilates’ original style of teaching by learning and teaching Classical Pilates. Due to her passion and dedication to the Method, she was invited to attend a Heritage Pilates workshop where she met and trained under Joseph Pilates’ protégé Romana Kryzanowska. She has also trained with first generation Pilates elder Jay Grimes and other well-known Classical Pilates Master teachers recognized in the Classical Pilates community.
As a life long learner, Monica continues to build her knowledge of Classical Pilates by attending additional workshops and conferences when possible. She has recently completed a second certification in the Classical Pilates Method with Power Pilates under the mentorship of Julie Toren.
Monica moved to Louisville a few years ago with her husband Daniel. She is bi-lingual in Spanish and is excited to join Core Fluency Pilates so she can share her passion for Pilates with our clients.
Kim Root is a dance artist and movement educator based in Louisville, KY. She became involved with Pilates when recovering from a back injury. She soon was hooked, and shortly thereafter began a teacher training program through The Pilates Studio in Seattle which was guided and assessed by Romana Kryzanowska. She completed her training in 1996 and has had the opportunity to teach (and learn) at many different studios around the country. Kim enjoys bringing the breadth of her movement experiences and knowledge into her teaching.