Our Teachers - Our Commitment to You
Our principal goal is to empower all participants in the Pilates Method of Body Conditioning to be in control of their own health and well-being, and to provide a supportive atmosphere in which clients may grow, learn, and be guided toward reaching their fitness potential. Our teachers are highly trained, enthusiastic people dedicated to health and wellness. We are strongly committed to the power and depth of the original Pilates Method.
The physical conditioning system developed by Joseph H. Pilates is a highly evolved and in-depth program that should be taught by individuals who have studied the system intensely and seriously.
Our fully certified teachers have fulfilled a minimum of 700 hours of active training in all apparatus and mat work, seminars, and apprentice teaching. We strive to share/inform consumers of the power of the original Pilates Method by offering full Pilates sessions, incorporating both apparatus and mat exercises, with experienced professional teachers in a safe environment.
Several Excel Pilates Annapolis, Inc. instructors are certified in The Pink Ribbon Program and are Post Operative Exercise Specialists for breast cancer survivors. We apply the knowledge from the program, regarding the effects of surgery on the survivor, directly to Pilates session design. The goal is to assist cancer survivors in experiencing a classical Pilates session while honoring their physical history.
Meet Our Teachers
Kerry De Vivo, the owner of Excel Pilates Annapolis, is the only second generation* Pilates teacher in the Annapolis area. She is a certified teacher of The Pilates Method of Body Conditioning by The Pilates Center in Boulder, CO (1995) and by Romana Kryzanowska at The Pilates Studio in New York, NY (1996). She has an MFA degree in Dance and a BS degree in Arts Management and is Pink Ribbon Program certified. Kerry celebrated her 25th year of teaching Pilates in 2020.
Kerry began studying Pilates in 1986 with Steve Giordano at SUNY Purchase. In 1998, after completing her Pilates certifications, Kerry co-founded, with Lesa McLaughlin, Excel Movement Studios, a 5,000 square foot Pilates studio in Washington, DC. In 2002, she co-founded Excel Pilates Annapolis. The DC and Annapolis, MD studios now operate as affiliate studios along with Excel Pilates Northern Virginia.
Kerry is co-director of Excel's Pilates Teacher Training Program established in 2001. The Pilates Teacher Training Program at Excel is dedicated to providing high-quality training in the original work of Joseph H. Pilates. It is a comprehensive and in-depth one-year training program requiring a minimum of 700 hours of hands-on training in all levels of the Pilates mat and apparatus work. Kerry works directly with apprentices to help them reach their goals of teaching Pilates. In 2009, Kerry helped develop Excel's Pilates Teacher Mentor Program designed to offer high level continuing education to area Pilates teachers.
Kerry is the co-author of the research study, The Benefits of The Pilates Method for Shoulder Stabilization in Dancers, which was presented at the Annual Symposium on Medical Problems of Musicians and Dancers in Aspen, CO. She is the co-author of Excel's Pilates Teacher Training Program Manual and Excel's Pilates Mat Guide. Kerry is also a featured contributing writer in Peter Fiasca's book, Voices of Classical Pilates and has a contributing interview in Fiasca's most recent book, Voices of Classical Pilates II, The Men's Work.
Kerry served on the board of directors for the Authentic Pilates Union from 2011-2017. From 2009 - 2011, Excel Pilates Annapolis was an official studio of The Pilates Center's Masters Program. During this time Kerry participated as an approved presenter for continuing education workshops for The Pilates Center's Masters Program.
Kerry has taught the Pilates Method to clients who range in age from adolescents to seniors, applying Pilates in its original form for performance improvement, injury prevention, rehabilitation, and fitness. Her clients have ranged from professional athletes including runners, dancers, gymnasts, football players, cyclists, golfers, and rowers, to individuals with specific health issues, to those simply looking for an alternative fitness program. Kerry has worked with clients in pre and post-surgical situations.
Kerry has presented workshops on Pilates at Physical Therapy clinics and at the University of Colorado/Boulder, the University of Maryland/College Park, the University of Florida/Gainesville, and Shenandoah University. She taught Pilates in Relation to Modern Dance, a semester-long class at George Washington University. Kerry was a Panelist on the Careers in Dance Board, representing Pilates, for the 8th Annual Dance Medicine Symposium at Goucher College in March 1998.
In addition to Pilates, Kerry had a professional career in dance. She served on the dance faculty at George Washington University and the University of Maryland at College Park. She performed with Deborah Riley Dance Projects for three years as a principle company member and has performed with Liz Lerman Dance Exchange, Adrienne Clancey, and Mim Rosen. Her choreography and performances have been viewed in Colorado, New York, Maryland, Washington D.C, the U.K. and Australia.
Kerry's teaching is inspired by the life's work of Joseph Pilates as well as her clients. "It is a gift to work with a client for years and assist them in their journey to meet their fitness goals. Pilates is a sound method of body conditioning that is rich with detail and powerful with results. It is a method that is applicable to all bodies."
Kerry is dedicated to the original Pilates method and to offering clients an empowering fitness experience. She only employs teachers who share the same commitment.
is a third generation* Pilates teacher and graduated from the Excel Pilates Teacher Training Program in 2018. Amanda has studied and taught Ballet her entire life and, as a teen during summer intensives, she took beginning Mat Pilates classes. With years of strong ballet training, her posture was still very poor. Pilates has given her the strength, balance, and awareness for massive improvement.
Exercise and nutrition is a passion of Amanda’s, she holds a B.A. in Exercise Science from Towson University. In search of a new, invigorating, challenging form of exercise, Amanda stumbled upon Excel Pilates Annapolis. She quickly fell in love with, not only the physical changes in her body but the mental clarity she felt after her sessions. She decided that she wanted to share her passion with others and enrolled in the teacher training program. “Pilates has changed my life, my spirit, and my soul. The world stops, and all my troubles fade into the background the minute I walk into the studio. That peace and mental clarity are what I want to share and pass on to others.”
Diane Adams-Strickland is a third generation* Pilates teacher and graduate of the Excel Pilates Teacher Training Program under Alexandra Adams in 2019. In early 2020, she was one of four Pilates instructors accepted to participate in a year-long intensive teacher training program for certified teachers with Chris Robinson of Pilates and Sports, formally S6 Fitness.
Besides her weekly training with Chris Robinson and Victoria Torrie-Capan, she furthers her Pilates education by attending workshops held by Kathryn Ross-Nash, Dana Santi, Andrea Maida, Kerry De Vivo, and other second generation teachers.
A native Washingtonian, Diane holds a B.A. from the University of Maryland, College Park and a J.D. from The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law. She first turned to Pilates to help heal tendinitis and hip bursitis while training for a marathon. Besides running, Diane enjoys dancing, music, and hanging out with her two small children. She is excited to share her love of Pilates to “every body” and “everybody.” She particularly enjoys working with athletes and persons with special needs.
Meet our Studio/Marketing Director
Jessica Stephens serves as our Studio/Marketing Director. She thoroughly enjoys working with the studio's clients and serving a vital marketing and administrative role.
Prior to her time at the studio, Jessica has held director positions with nonprofits and political campaigns regarding their communication and event organizational strategies. In her spare time, she enjoys singing opera and hiking with her husband and their husky fur baby.