Shelly Stephenson  PMA-CPT, BCSI

Shelly began her study of Pilates in 1989 with Marie José Blom-Lawrence while completing her BFA in dance at California Institute of the Arts. She became a Certified Pilates Instructor through the PhysicalMind Institute in 1997.

Before opening Bodies in Balance (1998-2010), Shelly spent two years teaching Pilates-based rehabilitative exercises to patients at a physical therapy clinic. Her experience includes athletic conditioning and rehabilitation with post-operative and fibromyalgia patients, people with obesity, and osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. She has also worked with ballet and modern dancers, and was the Pilates teacher for the artists of Cirque du Soleil’s Corteo in Portland.

In 2001 Shelly became Certified Teacher Trainer through the PhysicalMind Institute and has since trained Pilates instructors throughout the Pacific Northwest. Shelly is certified by the Pilates Method Alliance and now offers Pilates teacher certification, continuing education, and Anatomy in Clay as a faculty member of Balanced Body University.

Shelly is a lifelong student and teacher, fascinated by the body’s intelligent structure and natural resilience.

After much inquiry and research into a modality that would best complement her therapeutic Pilates work, in 2006 Shelly began her training in Anatomy Trains and KMI with Thomas Myers and KMI faculty. Offering Structural Integration along with her Pilates practice provides an effective blend of structural and kinesthetic support to her clients.

In 2011 she also became an Associate Instructor of Anatomy Trains, teaching solo and assisting and presenting at Anatomy Trains workshops on the west coast.

Shelly’s ongoing dedication is to helping her clients restore alignment and range of motion, increase the body’s adaptability and joint function, and to assist other movement educators in their ongoing discovery of the human body’s form and function.

Primary & Continuing Education


  •        2015 Walking The Lines / James Earls
  •       2015 Chronic Shoulder Pain w/ Ben Benjamin
  •       2014  Nerve Mobilization for Structural Integrators/ Kirstin Shumaker
  •      2013  5 Day Dissection Workshop/ Todd Garcia   Thomas Myers
  •      2012 Pilates on Tour Conference
  •     2011 Anatomy Trains Teacher Training
  •     2010 Pilates for Rehabilitation Conference
  •     2009 Pilates for Rehabilitation Conference
  •    2008 Oregon LMT license #15516
  •    2008-09-10 Hosted / attended Franklin Method Workshops
  •    2008 Anatomy in Clay Teacher Training
  •  2007-2008 Faculty Training- Balanced Body University
  •  2007 KMI Structural Integration Training (500 Hours)
  • 2006 PMA Certified
  • 2006 Pilates on Tour/ Seattle conference attendee
  •   2005 Pilates Method Alliance conference attendee
  •   2003-04 Body Mind Spirit Conference attendee
  • 2001 Teacher Trainer – Physicalmind Institute
  •  1996 Pilates Certification- Physicalmind Institute
  •   1994-95 Studies and taught dance in Taipei, Taiwan
  •    1994 BFA California Institute of the Arts, Modern Dance Performance & Choreography


Current Google Reviews:

Harley Leiber

9 months ago
At age 60 I entered, with some degree of trepidation, into the world of Pilates. My guide on this journey has been Shelly Stephenson. With a surgically repaired rotator cuff, a previous L4-5 lumbar laminectomy , recent umbilical hernia surgery, a surgically removed left big toe bone spur and a growing left heel bone spur I thought my dancing days were over. But under Shelly’s careful and expert tutelage I have gained spinal mobility I thought was gone forever, restored shoulder ranges of motion that are better than normal, and core strength. Shelly’s guidance and patience combined with her comprehensive knowledge of the interconnectedness of muscle and fascia make her an exceptional Pilates instructor.

Amanda Carmichael

9 months ago
I love Shelly! I have been seeing her for Pilates for about 3 months after I had my second baby. I feel wonderful, my body feels strong and almost back to normal. She individualizes each session based on my needs, always adding and changing exercises to keep my progress on track. Her knowledge of the body and anatomy is incredible and it really shows at each session.

Dawn Fuke

8 months ago
I’ve been doing Pilates for 3+ years and had several different teachers. Shelly is the best! I firmly believe I recovered from my car accident quicker (and maybe stronger) because of her guidance. Shelly makes my workouts both challenging and fun, which is why I’ll follow her anywhere (within reason) :)

Where are the Yelp reviews?

Hidden by Yelp years ago.
You have to go way out of your way to see them on Yelp, so here they are.


  • Lauren L.
    • Lauren L.
    • Eugene, OR
    • 0 friends
    • 3 reviews

    Shelly  knows so much, one can’t exhaust her supply of ideas as to how to get you well, strong and reaching your potential in health. Her studio is full of gadgets and equipment that she knows how to put to best use. I have personally benefited greatly from her encyclopedic knowledge of  the body, Pilates, KMI and many other modalities she has studied. I gladly send clients to her and of course, hear wonderful reports.

  • Pat M.
    • Pat M.
    • Albany, CA
    • 0 friends
    • 1 review


    Shelly is amazing!  Experienced, competent, compassionate, and intuitive about your body!  I am a 60 year old woman recovering from bulging discs in my cervical and lumbar spine, and Shelly’s work with me definitely  helped facilitate and enhance my healing process, and kept me moving forward in getting my life back.

    She also worked with my 30 year old daughter and her husband.  It definitely became a family affair ( you could call it a love affair – we all loved her).

    Unfortunately, we’ve all moved away from Portland, and we all miss her (and Portland) like crazy!

  • Stephanie D.
    • Stephanie D.
    • Ardmore, PA
    • 0 friends
    • 1 review


    Shelly is laid back and a pleasure to be around, while also being one of the most knowledgable practitioners I have learned from.  My husband and I both were experiencing chronic pain (my shoulder/neck and his wrist) when we started working with Shelly.  Through our sessions, we were able to get stronger, healthier, and pain free, all while having fun!
    My mother also is a happy and satisfied client of Shelly’s.  Go see her, bring your friends and family – you will all be healthier and happier for it!

  • Mary U.
    • Mary U.
    • Portland, OR
    • 0 friends
    • 1 review


    After taking Pilates lessons from Shelly for several years and doing the KMI series, my back and shoulders are flexible and strong and I no longer have backaches. My core strength enables me to sit up with ease. I look forward to the sessions and leave feeling invigorated. Shelly watches my movements closely and makes needed changes to my technique enabling me to get the most from the exercises safely.

    I would recommend Shelly to anyone.

  • Kimberlee S.
    • Kimberlee S.
    • Portland, OR
    • 0 friends
    • 1 review


    I have been seeing Shelly for Pilates for about 2 years.  She is a great Pilates instructor, able to explain the movements and adapt as necessary for each person’s ability.  Pilates with Shelly has made me more flexible and much stronger.

    I recently did a series of KMI sessions with Shelly.   Each session focuses on a different area, but is adapted to suit particular needs.  In my case, Shelly helped greatly with my chronic lower back and hip pain, freeing up areas that felt “stuck.”  My muscles feel longer and my posture is better. I feel like I am moving more freely.  KMI is amazing, and Shelly is great!

Shelly Stephenson PMA®-CPT, KMI Certified
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