John T. Gossett

Fond Memories


The first time I heard the word Pilates was in 1981 when I was working with Maria Tallchief at the Chicago City Ballet. The co-director of the company at that time was a very talented man named Paul Mejia. On one occasion when Paul's mother came to visit, she approached me and said that she would like to show some exercises that would improve my dance technique. I was flattered that she was interested in helping me, but I felt that I was already working hard enough by taking ballet classes, rehearsing, and going to the gym, and so politely and foolishly I turned her down. Paul's mother is Romana Kryzanowska, one of the original disciples of Joseph Pilates, but of course at that time I had no idea what Pilates was. In a twist of fate, I ended up moving to Houston in 1983 to take an apprentice teaching position at the Houston Ballet's Body Conditioning Studio, a Pilates studio based on the reworking of the Pilates technique by Alan Herdman, a respected Pilates instructor in London. I then opened my own studio, Eastside Studio, in 1991, and now have the umbrella name of Pilates Concepts of Houston®, which I feel is a compilation of my 38 years of experience teaching Pilates-based exercise. In 2000, Eastside Studio became a certifying center for the Physicalmind Institute of New York.

When I first started teaching Pilates-based exercise in 1983, it was incredibly difficult to obtain information on the subject of Pilates, but now there is a surplus of books and videos available to individuals of all fitness levels. As a fitness method, Pilates has greatly expanded, and I feel that Pilates Concepts of Houston® will continue supporting the integrity of the work.


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