21 Things You Never Knew About Me: Kristi Cooper

Pilates Anytime Co-founder Kristi Cooper answers our burning questions about life, Pilates, and her favorite Pilates playlists.

1. Where are you from, and where do you live now?

I was born in Minot, North Dakota, and I grew up in San Diego, CA. Now though, I feel like Carpinteria (near Santa Barbara), where I live currently, is my true home.

2. When did you first start practicing Pilates?

In 1983, at age 13. Kathy Corey started a teen class for her daughters, Justine, Amy and Jenna. Justine and I were in the same grade together and are still friends today.

3. What’s the most valuable life lesson you’ve learned through your practice?

If I pay attention to my body in relation to the exercises, it tells me a lot about the current state of my life and what I might need to adjust.

4. What’s the most valuable life lesson you’ve learned through your teaching?

I think I learn a life lesson every time I teach. The metaphors that come out of my mouth when I really mean what I say to a client is often the very thing I need to hear in that moment. More specifically, I've learned that I’m not always right, and life (and Pilates) is way more fun when you give room to explore and learn.

5. If you could be doing anything else besides Pilates, what would you be doing?

Everything I could to become a nature photographer (with exception to being in the ocean where sharks are present).

6. What’s the most distant/exotic place Pilates has ever taken you?

I used to travel a lot with BASI Pilates®, and I'm very grateful I was able to visit some pretty incredible places. The most distant definitely would be South Africa. I once hiked to the top of Lion's Head in Cape Town! The most exotic would be Istanbul. China fits in somewhere there, too. Thanks, Rael and BASI Pilates®!

7. What would you say to your younger self in 10 words or less?

Trust yourself. Live now. Love as much as you can.

8. If you could do one Pilates move for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?

Spine Stretch without a doubt. I believe Joseph Pilates' quote that you’re only as old as your spine is flexible. Also, Rael Isacowitz taught me a version of Spine Stretch that includes back extension. I feel like a new, solid, younger person every time I do it.

9. What’s your favorite Pilates quote?

My favorite Pilates quote: “To achieve the highest accomplishment within the scope of our capabilities in all walks of life, we must constantly strive to acquire strong healthy bodies and develop our minds to the limit of our ability."

10. Who would you dedicate your first book to, and what would you say?

My book would definitely be a Pilates book, and the dedication would read:
“This book is dedicated to Kathy Corey. For giving me direction, a home, a path, a career, and your friendship.”

11. Pilates with Music or No Music?


12. What’s on your Spotify playlist?

Ha! Which one?! I use Spotify a lot. I’m currently trying to learn how to hoop dance to help my brain recover from a fall and because it's super fun! I’m doing less dancing and more twirling hoops on my wrists. For hoop twirling, I am listening to Rush ("Spirit of the Radio," "Limelight," and "Freewill"), and Metallica’s version of "Turn the Page." I’m also creating a sample playlist for the DJ at our annual Pilates Anytime party. I haven’t put any EDM on it, yet, so let’s not show Amy Havens this!

13. If you could meet Joseph Pilates in person, what would you say?

How am I doing? Am I doing ok?

14. What advice do you have for the first time Pilates teacher?

Try not to take Pilates or your teaching so seriously that you miss the point. Ask yourself how you are contributing to your client’s zest for life as compared to just their performance of exercises.

15. How do you define success?

1. A good night of sleep.
2. Time off without thinking of work.
3. Collaborating on a project that makes something better than it was before.

16. What do you fear most?

Earthquakes, Tsunami’s (I really should move!),... and I fear being misunderstood.

17. What’s one thing most people don’t know about you?

I got to meet Michelle and Barack Obama at a party.

18. Where or how do you like to spend most of your time?

Pilates Anytime takes a good bit of my time, and I love every minute of it! When I'm not building the company, I spend my time dancing, practicing hoop dance, and taking pictures of birds and sea life.

19. Favorite book?

Shantaram. It's a caper and a travellogue all in one - a complete journey and just so rich.

20. Favorite movie?

"American Beauty" and "The Outsiders"

21. What’s your hidden talent? Will you show us?

I’m not a trained dancer, but I like to think I do okay without choreography. :)

Kristi Cooper
About the Author

Kristi Cooper

Kristi Cooper is a Co-founder of Pilates Anytime and a seasoned Pilates professional. Her approach to Pilates maintains that the exercises practiced in the Pilates method are the vehicle which drive us towards increased awareness, balance, and vitality.


Myriam Kane
Thank you for sharing yourself, for your beautiful heart and transparency, Kristi!
love you even more!
Samantha F
1 person likes this.
I’ve only quite recently discovered Pilatesanytime & was delighted to find some of yr classes. Having used many of yr YouTube stuff in the past. I love the way you explain so clearly how yr feeling, hence how we should be feeling whilst doing different moves etc and give us different ways of thinking etc and speaking to us not at us (I’m sure yi know what I mean;) 😘
Only now seeing that you are the co-founder of PA !!😁So I’d also like to Thank you SO much as your making my classes the busiest they’ve EVER been (in 23yrs:) as I’m giving something more every time to every different Pilates class I have and also enjoying teaching even more🤗 Thank you Thank you Thank you 😘
Samantha You are so welcome! Thank you for your feedback too! 

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