Hilliard Studio Method


Since high school, my fitness identity could pretty singularly be wrapped up as “runner.” And as said “runner,” the only exercise I consistently made time for was… you guessed it… running. Sure I enjoyed other things- hiking, yoga, etc. But those were just icing on the cake. The cake was always running. Eventually though, (you see where this is going don’t you?) I did learn that yes, it turns out you can have TOO MUCH cake. And as a pattern of nagging overuse injuries and muscle imbalances began to emerge in my body, I begrudgingly started incorporating weight training and core work to keep those at bay. It was nothing fancy, just 20 to 30 minutes of free weights in the locker room a couple days/week. I was pretty much making it up. No significant intention behind my routine but just checking that box off, because I didn’t feel particularly passionate about it. I’m convinced I’d still be just checking that box, if it wasn’t for all the wonderful women that played a part in introducing me to Hilliard Studio Method.

I first heard of the studio through my patients. I am a primary care physician and spend a fair bit of time counseling people at their annual exams about the contributions of diet and exercise to their overall health. When posing the question ‘what is your current exercise routine?’, I started taking note that a very LARGE percentage of my patients were answering that HSM was an integral part of their routine. This was usually followed by ‘You HAVE to try it,’ ‘It’s SO HARD’ and ‘You’ll LOVE it.’ After hearing this multiple times a day for over a year and actually passing the studio on my way to work, I decided enough signs were pointing in the direction that yes indeed I did have to try it. Since I had never taken a barre class before and wasn’t familiar with the foundations of the class, I thought a good place to start was a DVD. The first time I did a Hilliard DVD in my living room, I was grateful to hear Liz and Clary explain that yes your legs should be shaking. Because not only was I shaking, but I was humbled and I was hooked. I loved this new challenge and immediately felt this was a routine I could be passionate about!

Within a couple weeks I started attending live classes, and fell in love with the energy of the studio. From the friendly and encouraging trainers and staff to fellow inspiring students, the motivational atmosphere of the studio was one I knew I wanted to be a part of. It’s hard to believe almost seven months have passed since my first class. I have loved seeing and feeling my body get stronger with each passing week and pushing myself to a new edge on a regular basis. I can’t thank HSM enough for their ongoing encouragement for me and so many women all over Charlotte to BE POWERFUL!

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