Leslie Renews Pilates Passion on PNWP’s 13th Anniversary

by Leslie Braverman on June 24, 2014

On May 1, Leslie Braverman and PNWP co-owner Melanie Byford-Young celebrated 13 years in business as the Pacific Northwest’s premier center for Pilates education, certification, and client fitness. Leslie found the occasion a time to reflect on what PNWP means to her. 

Anniversaries make this girl take stock. We just hit #13. At the very heart of my 13 years as PNWP co-owner remains the daily exhilaration of connecting with clients. I love to hear their stories, to see them learn and watch their bodies—and spirits—change.

There is no greater joy for me then to hear a client say that they are stronger or physically able do something in their life—to describe an experience or pleasure that has been restored since discovering Pilates.


We were such kids! In 2001, PNWP was born, the brainchild of three Pilates pros: Melanie Byford-Young, Jean Leavenworth and me.


I have to grin when I look back—and stop at certain images: The day we found our first studio; the tingle of excitement and nervousness the day we signed our lease; when we taped the location for each Reformer on the floor. How thrilling it was when our very first STOTT PILATES instructor training course filled—with ten terrific students from points all over the Pacific Northwest. And, how stunned we were to expand the studio after just one year.

“Ballet taught me to be hardworking, focused and disciplined. Owning a business has taught me to be more patient, caring and human. Greatest of all the gifts: PNWP is a wellspring of friendship and community.”

                                                        — Leslie Braverman, PNWP 

Each of PNWP’s certified instructors—from our first day to now—has been hand-picked because of their training, skill, teaching talent and how they invest in their clients. I’m honored that today there are 20 gifted instructors engaged here.

We have grown slowly and organically.  We make choices based on what feels right in the moment and reflects our values. We learned a few lessons the hard way. Working with clients has always been a pleasure; learning to run a business has held as many challenges as triumphs. Growing up can be painful!

I step into our 14th year grateful that I took a chance to have this life. Our anniversary has brought me back to the beginning. I am reminded of why I wanted to own a Pilates studio and how much I love it. My goal this year to keep my eyes wide open, to be consciously aware of PNWP’s extraordinary possibilities and the gift I have been given to help change people’s experiences in a meaningful, life-affirming way.

                                                                                                            Yours in health,

                                                                                                            Leslie Braverman

Pacific NW Pilates is studio, school and fitness family under one roof. Click to learn more about our education courses and workshops, private studio sessions and group classes. Or call for details: (503) 292-4409.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Larry Braverman June 27, 2014 at 4:30 pm

Beautifully said, Leslie. I am proud to be your father, lucky to be your Pilates student. Love, dad


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