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Movers and Shakers Interview with Hilary Curwen

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Pilates instructor Hilary Curwen

Tell us your name and a little about yourself.

Born and raised in NYC, I moved to LA in 2017. An athlete most of my life, I moved to LA and immediately got certified to be a personal trainer. I have always been a teacher at heart even though I would continuously tell myself I wasn’t. I came to LA to pursue my acting dreams, which definitely had its highs and lows. I began taking Pilates down the street from my apartment and fell in love with it. The movements were gentle and rigorous at the same time. I leaned away from general personal training and spent most of my days running all over town teaching at different studios and auditioning. It took me a while to realize that I loved teaching and had a knack for it. When you move to LA for one thing it’s hard to admit to yourself that it is okay to pivot.

 

What exactly does your company do?

Pilates instructor for groups, companies, and one-on-one. I work with big companies like Google and Amazon, teaching teams Pilates virtually. I also come to peoples’ homes and do private training as well as small groups.

 

What were the biggest challenges you have faced and how did you overcome them?

Building a clientele. It still is challenging, but I realized the best way to get my name out was word of mouth. I taught classes in studios all over LA, which is a smaller pool of people than it seems. My name was on schedules everywhere, and I definitely drew a following from that.

 

What piece of advice do you wish someone had given you at the start of your career?

I should have taken my job more seriously. In my early twenties, I viewed my job as, “just working people out.” I thought of it as a side hustle and didn’t think what I had to offer was special. I was focused on my acting career and everything else just seemed like a means to an end. It wasn’t until I turned thirty that I was at a bachelorette party and all the girls were talking about their workouts and their instructors. In that moment I realized that what I had to offer was important enough to these women’s’ lives that they talked about it with each other for hours. I’m not sure why it took me so long to be proud of what I did, but I am glad I got there eventually. I started to introduce myself as a Pilates Instructor and I felt empowered and strong. It took me getting older to value what I did and that I was enough. We often label who we are as one thing, and that limits us so much. When I was able to let go of the one identity I associated myself with, I was able to really flourish and find my path.

 

Who are your biggest influences and people you admire and why?

Tracy Anderson, she has built an entire fitness empire. Her style is very similar to mine, and I hope to meet her one day here in LA. My close friend Meghan Currone has inspired me from the first day I walked into LA Fitness to be a baby trainer there, ten years ago. She was actually very scary and such a presence about her. For some reason she liked me and every studio/gym she would move to, she would take me along. I believe we worked at five different gyms. She is a powerhouse trainer and an incredibly loyal friend.

 

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are?

My family. They have never made me feel like I was not good enough. They are supportive and want me to succeed. My mother especially has been my rock and the woman who never forgets to tell me how impressed she is. I always ask for help… I am not the person who wants to do it all on her own. Heck, I have hired business coaches galore!

 

What do you see as your greatest success in life?

My relationship with my siblings and my parents. My siblings are the most important people in my life. I love going home to see my parents and adore family trips. I also believe my curiosity sets me apart from the crowd. I may not know as much as someone in my profession, but I am not afraid to ask questions and dive in to learn. I will continue to take courses, ask questions, and be a student.

 

How can people follow your journey? Please list your social media URLs

INSTA @hilarycurwen

Founder & Editor-In-Chief of Kivo Daily Magazine

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