"Gone Gratz" is an expression describing studios or teachers that have experienced Gratz and classical Pilates and have switched from their prior equipment and embraced the original, authentic apparatus used in teaching of the Pilates method.

As we have traveled to workshops and conferences all over the world, and more recently through social media, we continue to hear your stories explaining your introduction to Gratz apparatus and the positive impact on your Pilates experience. We are proud to continue the tradition and serve the Pilates community and share the stories below and welcome the opportunity to share your "Gone Gratz” story –

Please contact marketing@gratzindustries.com or post your story on #gratz
  • MAY 2021
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  • AUGUST 2020

Meet Elsa van der Merwe & Marlene Amado. Here is THEiR Gone Gratz Story

Founder and owner of @reformpilatesyvr, having fun and working out on the Gratz Apparatus.

My introduction to Pilates was Contemporary and I was practicing and teaching on many different brands of apparatus. I felt the benefits in my body, and saw the improvement in my students, but something felt missing. I tried adding more variety to the repertoire, but it did not feel right. I had little exposure to the Classical Method and Gratz Apparatus, which made me curious. I was too busy at the time to pursue it, yet the curiosity stayed with me. This all changed when I started working at Reform Pilates. Reform Pilates is a Classical Studio and owns Gratz Apparatus. My Classical training and proper introduction to Gratz Apparatus happened at the same time. I was impressed by how different the exercises felt, and how challenging it was! I did not need variety. Instead, I found the thread that ties the work together from beginner exercises to advanced. I can feel a big difference and see it in my students. All thanks to Gratz and the Classical Method.


Meet Natalia Amat. Here is HER Gone Gratz Story

''I began to train on Gratz 1 year ago during Teachers' Proficiency Pilates Program. I always had trained with another brands and with Gratz immediately I felt the difference in my body. I noticed that exercises I used to perform easily in other apparatuses became a new challenge for me.

I teach from a private home studio with one to one clients and I want to offer them the best. So, I decided to sell my old equipment a few months ago and switched to Gratz. Personally, I feel more connected in my workouts, I have to work harder and it makes me feel stronger.”

Meet JENNIFER DELUCA from BodyTonic. Here is HER Gone Gratz Story

In 1995, I walked into Drago’s gym for the first time. The Gratz Reformers, neatly placed in a row, looked like little soldiers at the ready. My first teacher was Roxane Richards Huang who was Romana Kryzanowska’s protege before she had proteges. Roxane, like the equipment, was exact, clear, neat, supportive and demanding.

I laid myself on the blue carriage. The shoulder blocks contained me. The carriage supported me. My feet were awakened as I pressed out from the footbar. My leg muscles fired as I pressed out and in. My neck elongated with the pressure of the shoulder blocks. Toes, arches, heels...The structure, feedback and resistance of the equipment piqued my curiosity. The sound of the springs pulled my mind even deeper into the moment. Working so much while lying down was a new and strange experience.

I was taught the footwork, the hundred and then the long straps went on my feet for leg circles and as I started to circle my legs, I marveled at the simple revelation that the right leg was more dominant than the left, and while marveling at that, it was like the sky opened up and the angels started to sing. Seriously, it was a point in time I will never forget.  I was now connected to Pilates for the rest of my life.

From then on, twice a week, I would leave my desk at PEOPLE Magazine and walk over to 57th street during my lunch hour. The sound of the springs, the movement of the bed, the encumbered feeling of being placed in the equipment (and watching the “over 60” crowd killing it all around me) was life-changing.  Like true love, the Gratz equipment is a combination of being held and challenged; from that dynamic, one can really grow. After a year of private lessons, I signed up for teacher training with the New York Pilates Studio.

Eighteen months later I was certified by Romana Kryzanowska (champagne was had!) and I set out to buy equipment. I didn’t have the money to buy Gratz, but was able to locate Steve Giordano who was making equipment out of wood (as opposed to Gratz metal).  In 1997, I sold my car for $5000 and bought a Cadillac, Wunda Chair, Spine Corrector, and Reformer.  It all went in my living room in Brooklyn, New York.

That began a 16 year relationship with non-Gratz “classical” equipment company.  But everything changed in August of 2013 when Romana passed away. I hadn’t seen Romana in many years, but her passing sparked a deep longing to return to my roots. The preciousness of that time at Drago’s magnified and completely filled my vision. I couldn’t ignore it. And now I had the successful studio to back up an investment in the equipment I always wanted. Time is precious.  I love my work.  Why mess around?  I drove to Long Island City where the Gratz Industries factory was located at the time, and described to David Rosencranz how I felt.  And he said, “You know.  I get exactly what you are feeling.  I just never heard it articulated quite that way.”  Talking with David felt like coming home. I put in my order, sold my equipment, kept a few sentimental pieces, and replaced everything else with Gratz.




Changing to Gratz was SIGNIFICANT.  As a studio with clients that had been training for over 15 years, this was a major change.  Gratz equipment looks more compact, is more compact and the resistance is heavier.  There is also something about the last bit that you have to pull the carriage in.  You need to engage your powerhouse.  In fact, it teaches you what the powerhouse even is because you have to find it!

At first, I will be honest we had mixed reviews.  Some people were simply ecstatic!  I heard things like,  “This is the workout I wanted and I didn’t even know it!” or “You made such a good decision changing out your equipment.” Others were like, “It’s different.”  or “I’m not sure I like it.” But eventually those nay-sayers came back to me and said, “You know it took a little getting used to, but my body feels so much stronger. Thank you for making this switch.”

I think the other Pilates equipment companies were focused on making  “improvements” on Joe’s ideas and consequently, equipment was made bigger, smoother or lighter. They put innovation before authenticity.  I’ve gotten on so many reformers that were huge and were so smooth I could sneeze and it would move. Or cadillacs that were far too wide to do any of the exercises in proper alignment.  Working on those apparatuses simply did not feel like Pilates to me. What I love about Gratz is that Joe’s design, which was inherited through tradition, is part of their ethos. This is not a company that rushed to market because it was a fad. They were making and fixing Pilates equipment back when no one knew what Pilates was. When you buy Gratz, you are buying tradition and legacy in addition to the quality, look, feel and craftsmanship.  You feel that when you walk into your studio, before even mounting the equipment and your clients feel it, too.

Authentically taught, a Pilates session is like no other exercise out there.  With the sensory experiences of sound, sight and touch, rhythm, ranges of motion, breath awareness, body awareness and systematic learning, it really is in a class all by itself. After your workout you should feel like you went to the chiropractor, got a massage and worked out all at once.  The equipment is as inherent to the work as the movements themselves.  Mr. Pilates made his equipment himself to support his work, his method, his thinking, and his belief system about what was best for the body. Gratz carries our generation in his legacy.



Meet ALLI BOWERS. Here is HER Gone Gratz Story

Please meet Rhythm Classic Pilates in Korea. They studied with Trish Pilates and are in Korea...

"Gratz is solid and beautiful. Gratz Spring has better elasticity than other equipment, cushion quality, and various colors, so it's a good to choose. #gratz #teamgratz"

Meet Pilatalia. Here is their Gone Gratz Story

Please meet Miquel Banket. Here is his story ...

“I taught simultaneously at a fitness center using contemporary equipment and at a studio using Gratz. While teaching at the fitness center, I noticed the difference how I taught and modified exercised to suit this particular brand of equipment. At first it was about familiarizing myself with the specifics, but, when I returned to Gratz I realized the amount of detail placed on the equipment and how it suited the exercises. It's all the small details, the specific angle of the footbar, the springs and tension, the movement of the reformer, the width and height of the box, everything has been thought out and measured specifically to the exercises. Most noticeable was how quickly my clients advanced and gained strength on Gratz equipment. That was the best comparison I could hope for in making my return to just using equipment specifically outfitted for the classical system.” #gratz #teamgratz



Meet ALLI BOWERS. Here is HER Gone Gratz Story

I trained on Gratz in 2008 as an apprentice with the U.S.P.A. in New York City. I had recently moved from North Carolina and decided to make a vision board of my biggest dreams. (Oprah told me to do it.) The board featured a career section, and on it was a magazine cutout of Gratz equipment. In ink I wrote the words “All Gratz Studio.“ Upon completion of my Pilates comprehensive program, I set out to find a teaching job. Thankfully I found work and was super excited to dive into Pilates instruction full-time. Because I’ve been employed by other people/companies for most of my career, I taught on whatever brands were available. This introduced me to several other popular manufacturers of Pilates equipment. I wouldn’t trade all those years of teaching on different brands for anything as they pushed me to grow, be adaptable and to understand the differences. It made me better. With that said, when I decided to order equipment for my own space in Raleigh, I knew what I wanted... To fulfill my vision board from 12 years ago.

Meet Pilatalia. Here is their Gone Gratz Story

My professional career as a pilates teacher started in a gym doing mat and reformer group classes 16 years ago.
In 2013 I decided to set up my own studio. My first steps there were with a different brand like Gratz ...but 4 years ago, during a Master with @pilatistic-old-school, I trained for the first time with Gratz apparatus and I felt in love.

I felt the real ressistance and support that the Gratz springs give us and I decided to change my equipment. My body feel it and the most important thing..MY CLIENTS FEEL IT TOO!!


Meet Nicole frederic. Here is HER Gone Gratz Story

GoneGratz. Please meet @nicole_frederic_lindo .. here is her story... After teaching contemporary Pilates for several years, I decided I owed it to myself, my clients, and especially to Joe to learn the classical Pilates method. One “run” on a Gratz Reformer and I was hooked! I felt the incredible difference in my body from that first session and immediately applied to a classical teacher training program. During that year I was able to workout on all Gratz apparatus and I was determined to Go Gratz all the way with my studio.

My first purchase was a reformer, of course. My clients also felt the difference right away and were happy with their progress! Piece by piece I was able to equip with everything from a Toe Corrector to a Guillotine!!! I am very proud to have been able to make this change as a student, a teacher and a studio owner and I am thrilled to be able to offer my clients the best! Thank you Gratz for making beautifully crafted equipment that closely adheres to Joseph Pilates’ original designs and intentions.

Meet Pilates of kansas city. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

GoneGratz.. do you have story to tell? We’d love to share it. Please meet @kathosbern.fitrd@pilatesofkansascity . Here is her GoneGratz Story...

I found and fell in love with the Pilates method after beginning classes at my home studio, Pilates of Kansas City, shortly after it opened in 2015. After encouragement from our studio owner (and teacher trainer), I signed up for Classical Pilates Education’s comprehensive training program and have been teaching since early 2018. I feel so fortunate that this career has never once felt like “work.”

Though I was trained on a different brand’s equipment (we have a mix), I absolutely adore the Gratz pieces Pilates of Kansas City has incorporated into the studio, and how the Gratz apparatus allowed me to deepen my practice. I am amazed with how the Gratz apparatus enables me to connect to my body and the exercises in a way I couldn’t completely comprehend previously. I’ve been able to pinpoint imbalances and am stronger as a result. It’s been a game changer that has taken my practice to the next level.


Meet victoria batha from the pilate snob. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

Gone Gratz... Please meet Victoria Batha. Victoria is an instructor at @therealpilates , runs @thepilatessnob and works with @alomoves. Here is her GoneGratz story...

I have been practicing some sort of “Pilates” since my early 20s. Back then I had no clue what the difference between classical and contemporary was and certainly had never used a classical apparatus. When I was introduced to the classical system, it all took on a new meaning. I couldn’t even go back to my former studio because the springs didn’t feel right- all the colors drove me mad! Once I started using Gratz, I never looked back. The resistance, the challenge- it keeps me hooked and keeps me strong. I am 100% TeamGratz. Their reputation precedes them every time.

Meet Alana wilbur. Here is HER Gone Gratz Story

Growingup, I always went to the gym with my dad. It was his thing and quicklybecame my thing too. About 10 years ago I went all in on bodybuildingand it wrecked havoc on my body. My love for weight training was stillthere, but the joy of it quickly dissipated as my body no longer knewhow to fully recover. By luck, I moved to San Francisco and quicklyfound a Pilates Studio down the hill from my apartment. Bored with thegym, I figured if anything it would be a fun workout that was completelydifferent than anything I’d ever done. When I say I was hooked, I WASHOOKED.

Fast forward, I decided the best thing to do would be to becomea Pilates instructor so I could teach others the joy of the method.After asking my instructor where she got her certification from, Iquickly enrolled in a comprehensive training program and was on my way.Pilates is a life long discipline and a forever practice that only getsbetter with time. Being introduced to Classical Pilates and Gratz hasonly deepened my love and respect for the method-my favorite thing to dois Pilates. It’s the most natural expression of my soul and it’s such ajoy to practice my passion on my Gratz.

Meet Downtown pilates munich. Here is their Gone Gratz Story

I'vestarted to teach Pilates on used equipment from another brand. I knewGratz from my teacher training and it was clear to me to order Gratzequipment if I will open my own studio. I'm very happy about my decisionfor Gratz. The high quality of the Gratz equipment enables me and myclients to have optimal training and supports me in striving forperfection 😉


Meet amber timmerman from pilates anderjin. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

I love the space I work andworkout in! My studio is in the Netherlands. After years of training Pilates at home with DVD’s, I wanted to know more about the technique andstarted attending workshops. Not long after I was hooked on teachingbut needed a great education. I went to Marjorie Oron in The Hague(Romana’s Pilates). There I learned not only how to teach Pilates but totweak it to each and every client needs. Seven years ago I opened thedoors of my own authentic Pilates studio with the Gratz apparatus andloved it ever since! We have great passionate and loyal clients. Never adull day!

Meet PALERMO Pilates Studio. Here is their Gone Gratz Story

Please meet Palermo Pilates. "My Pilates journey began with the best of intentions in a “contemporary” way. The deeper I delve, the more questions arose. At a certain point I asked myself, 'shouldn’t I know the origins of the work, before I try to modify?'

As it was for the method, so was it for the equipment! Once I began to learn the original method, the only equipment that made sense was the original equipment- Gratz!"

Meet laura melgar from laura melgar fitness. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

I got introduced to Pilates when I was at a Physical Therapy clinic. They had a Pilates reformer that they used to help people in their rehabilitation protocol. It was my first introduction to Pilates and I found a studio near me to take. They had Other equipment and had a mixed style of classes. I didn’t know any differently and got certified there. It was a great introduction to Pilates.

I ended up having surgery on a torn hip labrum and @angiespilateshaus helped me recover from it. Her home studio was new at the time and had a gratz reformer and mat. I could tell the difference right away but thought it was the introduction to the classical method and sought out to learn more. I found a studio to work at that had classical roots and was equipped with peak. I was there for a while and so I invested in what I taught with.

I’ve gotten to the point in my own practice where it’s time to upgrade! If I want it to get better I need to invest in the right equipment for it.

Meet Giulia Lopilatofrom Metodo Pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

Please meet @metodopilatesstudio. Here is her GoneGratz Story: "Love and Hug yourself. When I started Pilates I wasn’t using Gratz. I then trained with Romana’s Pilates. After that, I knew I wanted Gratz. I love it. My body and my soul thanks me to have a choice. The only, Original Pilates Method.

Gratz equipment are unmatched.

Meet Krissy Tate from Equinox Pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

Krissy works at Equinox in Bloomfield Hills, MI. She said... “I was introduced to Gratz when I first started teaching at Equinox. My body has responded the best to Gratz springs. The engineering of each piece of equipment helps my body clearly stay in proper alignment. I love sharing this with my clients.

Equinox is more than a place where high performers come to be their best.We’ve transformed every aspect of our membership to encompass integrated digital and in-club offerings to keep you at your best—all the time, any time.Discover the offerings below, plus The Equinox Standard for health, safety, and cleanliness.


Meet Diana Doody from Authentic Pilates NZ. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

"The first time I worked on a Gratz reformer was with Lesley Logan... One look at her equipment and I knew I was in for a total 🍑-kicking new experience! By the time 'Up Stretch' came, it took me 3 tries just to move the reformer bed. But that was the beauty of the equipment. NO CHEATING! I found my 🍑 connection and sought out Gratz equipment.

Home of theNational Training Centre for Authentic Pilates Education Internationalwe are also training the future Pilates teachers of NZ to uphold theoriginal work of Joseph Pilates. If you are interested in becoming aPilates Teacher or a Bridging Programme to complement your currenttraining please check out the APEI training website.

www.AuthenticPilatesEducation.com


Meet Aitopilates Rovaniemi from Aitopilates Rovaniemi Pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

"I’m writing from Rovaniemi, Finland. A city where we have a population density of 1,98 persons per square kilometer, which is one of the lowest in Europe, more reindeer then people, the cleanest air and waters in the world. Yet we live in a modern city filled with services. Our nights are white throughout the summer and on the opposite, in winter during the polar nights, there’s hardly daylight.

I opened a classical studio almost two years ago. I wanted to support local production, received a recommendation from a professional and ordered equipment from a start-up manufacturer. At first everything looked good but after three months the equipment broke down. I was lucky to find used Gratz reformers that were like new. Gratz equipment have helped us to feel the work where it is supposed to feel. I have been very satisfied and ordered a Gratz Pedipole and a Gratz Cadillac too. Now I have plans to order a High Chair, a High Mat etc. I highly recommend Gratz Industries. And hope to see you at the Arctic Circle when it’s safe to travel again. Stay strong, stay safe and healthy.

Meet Monica Szilarz from Dzień Dobry Pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

I was a Pilates teacher with a few years' experience when I finally got to Monika Jaworska' @truepilatespoland studio. I had a contemporary background and worked on Balanced Body apparatus. It helped me to mobilize my body after sitting years and years at my office desk and prepared me for what was going to steal my heart very soon. She put me on Gratz equipment which felt completely like nothing before.

As a Romana's Pilates teacher, Monika introduced me to the original method of Joseph Pilates and my body started to change. Not only did it get stronger faster than I expected, but most importantly I finally got rid of my lower back pain, which I was struggling with for long. The Gratz springs were what I needed to build my powerhouse and to feel how much the right proportions of the apparatus helps to connect to the right places of the body. It comes to no surprise I decided to become a Romana's Pilates teacher myself and stay true to the method!


Meet Heather Thomas Shalabi from Flex Studio pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

Please meet Heather from Flex Studios Honk Kong. "I started doing Pilates TWENTY years ago, I can hardly believe it. No stranger to movement, I was an avid yoga practitioner and Classical Ballet student before I entered the somewhat familiar, yet crazy challenging, and fun world of Pilates, which focused on joyful movement in three-dimensional space, all whilst getting my bum kicked by a screaming spring, or my balance challenged by a moving surface. At least, I THOUGHT that’s what I’d signed up for.

After many years of watching my students, and observing my own practice, I began to feel something was missing. I bought the Classical Pilates DVDs by Bob Liekens and studied them carefully. The muscular effort of the demo bodies was different, the movements, rhythm, angles and curves were different. And the apparatus was different from what I’d experienced. Most obvious was that the apparatus was truly teaching the student, and educating the body – through spring tension, different vectors of pull, the use of thick leather and wheels to teach proper hip and shoulder mechanics, surface area proportions, and oh those tell all metal and wood handles – it was all different! I just had to try it for myself.

Heather Thomas Shalabi has been teaching Pilates for more than 15 years.  Her recognition of the benefits of Pilates, and passion for the discipline led her to embark on intensive training, completing her full Studio certification through Polestar, and Traditional Pilates through 360° Pilates. Heather has since steadily grown Flex Studio to become one of Hong Kong’s premiere fitness destinations.  She also leads annual retreats in Asia, and regularly leads workshops to empower people to take control of their physical well-being. Heather’s interest in movement and the body stems from her decade-long training in classical ballet as a young girl, and subsequent daily yoga practice whilst living in New York City in the 1990’s.  

Certified Polestar Pilates – Mat, Allegro and Studio; Gyrotonic Expansion System apprentice; Xtend Barre certified.  200hrs RYT Classical Hatha Yoga. 360°Pilates Certification.

Meet Jennifer Marguerite from dover pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

Please meet Jennifer Marguerite and her gorgeous space. Here is her GoneGratz story... “I purchased the Studio Tower Unit from a friend who needed to down size due to Covid-19 restrictions. I have been using contemporary equipment in my studio for the past year. It’s been about a year since I’ve been on Gratz, I missed and felt the difference! Not only am I instantly able to connect with my core, I’m able to engage the backside of my body so much easier. I am one happy classical instructor!”

Meet Monica Hoekstra from Absolute Pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

After a decade or so with being an accredited training center for Stott Pilates, we made the radical switch to an all Gratz apparatus studio approximately 5 years ago. While I will save you the details to the events that led to this transition, I will tell you that my client base has grown exponentially as a result. While it coincided with a retraining and certification of my staff and self, at the sacrifice of an established career in contemporary Pilates, it yielded big dividends.
Aside from Covid19, our studio is thriving and our clients are at an all time high. Therefore, I commend Gratz for their commitment to authentic and excellent apparatus.

Monica Hoekstra is the owner of ABsolute Pilates in Charlotte, NC, founded in 2001, and the creator and founder of Core Barre.

Monica is passionate about teaching and enjoys coaching clients and students to achieve their optimal fitness goals.  She credits much of her teaching style to her early classical ballet training, where she was taught the importance of a solid foundation & structured syllabus that is relevant to all disciplines of good movement.

Meet Cheryl Turnquist from Providence Pilates Center. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

In 2001 I started my business with apparatus that I bought used and then as I expanded I stayed with that brand because of uniformity and I had gotten used to working with it. BUT, I had originally learned on Gratz apparatus and desperately wanted to go back to that.  2 years ago I started the process of selling my old apparatus and gradually replacing with Gratz. I just submitted an order for a Cadillac and Electric Chair which will make my studio completely Gratz. I love the way the apparatus providers just the right amount of resistance or support as needed.  I have seen clients and my own body change in significantly less time than on other apparatus. And I’ve seen connections get made much more organically in the Gratz. During Covid I brought one of my Reformer/Tower units home... and I’m planning to keep it here because it is the perfect way to keep strong and in practice during these challenging times. 100% Gratz is the best


Meet Julie Winters from JWinters Pilates. Here is her Gone Gratz Story

"I found Pilates at the only studio in my small city of Amarillo, TX, in 2006. I was working in corporate sales and marketing and loved being a client. I received my comprehensive certification from Peak Pilates in 2012 and was just planning on teaching on the side of my corporate America job. With the encouragement of my husband to go big or go home, I opened JWinters Pilates in 2013 and have been blessed with a full slate of clients ever since!

I opened my studio with all Peak equipment since that was the only equipment I had ever trained on.

A weekend trip to Denver in 2016 and a session at PH7 Pilates changed the course. I got to try a Gratz reformer for the very first time during that session.....holy moly.....it was a game changer! I couldn't believe how I felt that I had been cheating all along until then. The connection into my center was not only better but completely necessary in order to move the carriage in at all. I got to the car after my session and told my husband I just had my rear end kicked we needed a do-over on my studio equipment in Amarillo. (Bless his heart!) :) I started selling my Peak equipment off and replacing it with Gratz. I am stronger now than ever and my clients are blown away by how much harder they have to work on Gratz and they love it as much as I do! The reformer has always been my fav, but lately my baby arm chair has gotten more use and love. I didn't have much information on it in my initial training, so I've loved getting educated about how it fits into Joe's system.”

Meet DENES DREISZIGER from Espace Pilates. Here is his Gone Gratz Story

"It has been a love affair with Gratz since as long as I can remember. Getting the opportunity to be a host studio for the Real Pilates Teacher Training was the push we needed to finally go all Gratz. We are so happy we took the plunge! We can see the change in the way our clients work and get stronger! Nothing else has that unique feel of Gratz apparatus in my experience!"

Dénes Dreisziger
Owner Espace Pilates Montréal Canada. #gratz #teamgratz