Our Team

Sharon Gallagher-Rivera (Owner)
Master Teacher

Brook Notary
Master Teacher

Courtney Butowski
Expert Teacher

Jackson Grantham
Expert Teacher

Danielle ‘Dani’ Hendricks
Expert Teacher

Talia Nero
Expert Teacher

Nina Joly
Expert Teacher

Shana Morrison
Expert Teacher

Ilana Murphy
Expert Teacher

Lise Prewitt
Expert Teacher

Fernanda Repsold
Expert Teacher

Marianne Shih
Expert Teacher

Danielle Williams
Expert Teacher

Mariette Lapiz
Expert Teacher

Jayne Reichert
Expert Teacher

Heather Arnett
Substitute Expert Teacher

Kym Jaros
Apprentice Teacher

Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Sharon Gallagher Rivera

Sharon Gallagher-Rivera (Owner), Master Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Currently a tie between Side Lying Leg Spring Series and Backbends on the Ladder Barrel

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Big Splits (Grand Ecarte) on the Reformer

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m Momming and Dancing

Sharon Gallagher-Rivera is the Owner of Internal Fire Pilates and is also Co-Owner of Pilates Education Lab, a training program for aspiring Pilates teachers in San Francisco and Marin. Sharon is a seasoned instructor, and bodywork and rehabilitation specialist committed to enhancing the well-being and resilience of her clients across all physical states and abilities.

Sharon earned her BA in Politics and Performing Arts from USF in 1992, and then spent decades performing, both commercially and with contemporary dance companies including Printz Dance Project for many years. Initially trained by Ellie Herman, she began teaching Pilates in 1999 and has taught at various studios in San Francisco and Marin, including Sanchez Street Studios, owned by Carol LeMaitre (now her teaching partner and co creator of Pilates Education Lab).

Sharon has been blessed to learn from many talented teachers over the years. Aside from years of study with Jennifter Stacey, M.S., she earned a Master’s Certificate with the renowned Pilates Center of Boulder. Sharon enriches her Pilates practice with continued movement study through a regular Pilates practice and dance training in many styles including Modern/Contemporary, West African and Brazilian. Her students are her greatest teachers and she continues to gain experience through teaching with a range of methods. Aside from Pilates, these include: bodywork and massage techniques learned from her studies with Stephen Coleman, L.Ac., (blending the work of Lauren Berry, Swedish Massage, Rolfing and Feldenkrais), Jayne Edwards (Neuromuscular Rehabilitation work of Vladimir Janda, M.D.), Sue Hitzman (creator of the M.E.L.T. method) and Jean Claude-West.

After Lululemon Athletica selected her as a Global Ambassador for 2010-11, she was honored to be selected by PilatesAnytime.com as their “Next Pilates Anytime Instructor 2012”, winning a feature story in Pilates Style magazine. Sharon is a NPCT Certified instructor and has modeled for Ellie Herman’s books, ‘Pilates for Dummies’ and ‘Pilates Wunda Chair’ as well as Ellie’s DVD of Advanced Matwork. She appears in Jordan Matter’s book, ‘Dancer’s Among Us’ as well as Lois Greenfield’s ‘Moving Still’.

Internal Fire Pilates - 2nd Generation Teacher Brook Notary

Brook Notary, Master Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Back extension exercises are key. So much of life is forward. Our spines love us so much after extension work. So cheers to the Breaststroke, and to all exercises that open our hearts for that matter.

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Breaststroke on the Reformer–I have suchha love/hate relationship with it. I love how I feel after it, but I am humbled every time I do it.

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I am running my own private Pilates business out of my small cottage in Mill Valley. My daughter and I moved here from NYC during the pandemic. Being able to teach all my longtime NYC clients on Zoom allowed us the shift to be closer to family and nature. So in our spare time we are discovering all sorts of hikes and places to take our dog, Diogi. We are also enjoying the small things like being able to park our car at the grocery store and wearing a light sweater in winter time. 🙂

Brook Notary is one of NYC’s most renowned instructors, specializing in the Pilates Method. She has had the privilege of teaching Pilates for the past 18 years. Certified by celebrity teacher Rael Isacowitz with continued training from master teacher Kathy Grant, Brook can share knowledge she has gained from the best.

As a professional choreographer, aerialist, dancer, and athlete, Brook understands the body, it’s abilities, and it’s limitations from experience. She was a cast member of the hit aerial Off- Broadway show, De La Gurada, was a nationally ranked competitive rhythmic gymnast, toured the US as an acrobat with Cirque, choreographed for high profile music artists such as Usher, and received her MFA on full scholarship at Tisch School of the Arts.

This diverse background informs her nurturing yet “tough love” athletic approach that has created extraordinary results in her clients, many of whom have been with her for over 12 years. Brook’s clients come to her with issues ranging from rehabilitation, weight loss, heart conditions, diabetes, MS, depression, strengthening goals, and overall body maintenance needs. What excites Brook most, is how different every body is. Brook’s clients include everyone from pro athletes and high profile celebrities, to weekend warriors and silver sneakers, making her well versed in every client’s needs. “It is a true joy for me to make discoveries

Internal Fire Pilates - Certified Teacher Courtney Bukowski

Courtney Butowski, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: The Ab 5 Series

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: anything on the Cadillac

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m on the sidelines of a soccer field

Courtney is a multi-sport athlete (with a special love of soccer) who began Pilates to keep fit in her early 20s. She decided to become a Pilates instructor after assisting (really insisting of) her husband in recovery from a torn Achilles tendon via an active Pilates routine. Thus, she decided to enroll in the Pilates Education Lab Teacher Training program at Internal Fire and learn from the absolute best in the business (Sharon Gallagher-Rivera). Courtney has now been teaching Pilates since 2016 and has found it rewarding beyond measure, especially when she gets to teach it to her two young sons, both of whom are soccer

fanatics. Fitness has always been a positive part of her life and she continues to enjoy teaching others about body mechanics and how to be present in one’s own body and inspire it to healing and wholeness.

Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Jackson Grantham

Jack Grantham, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Full Hang on Cadillac

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Full Hang on Cadillac

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m enjoying cooking French and African Cuisine

I began training in Martial Arts in 2008, and completed my Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt certification through the world renowned Ralph Gracie by 2013. However, in 2010 my martial arts practice came to a halt after I suffered a neck injury that required surgery, which led me to the beginning of my Pilates journey. After three years of a dedicated Pilates practice, I was hooked, and decided to enroll in the Pilates Education Lab Teacher Training program. I’ve now been teaching Pilates since 2014 and the experience has been beyond rewarding. Fitness has always been a positive part of my life and I’ve enjoyed continuously learning more about the body through each movement system I’ve studied. The best part about teaching Pilates is that I love helping my clients learn how to embrace healthier changes in their bodies.

Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Danielle Dani Hendricks

Danielle ‘Dani’ Hendricks, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is:   Inversions on the Cadillac

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on:  Inversions, since I don’t have a Cadillac at home

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m usually at home teaching remotely or cooking for my family, at the climbing gym, or practicing aerial fabric and lyra in my aerial partner’s garage.

NPCP Certified Pilates Instructor, Danielle Hendricks

has been a lover of movement from birth. A competitive gymnast and dancer raised in Fresno, CA, Hendricks moved to Colorado in 1994, and graduated from CU Boulder with degrees in Kinesiology and Dance in 1999. She completed her comprehensive Pilates Certification Training in 2001, then Pilates Master’s Training in 2011 from The Pilates Center in Boulder, CO. From 2001 to 2003, Danielle toured the States, teaching at Inner Strength in Chicago, Every Body Fitness in Boston, Martha’s Vineyard Pilates Center, The Pilates Center in Boulder, and found her home in early 2003 at Pilates Aligned in Denver, CO with Cara Reeser as a mentor, inspiration, and friend. “Dani” was fortunate to be able to study several times with Reeser’s mentor, and first-generation teacher of Pilates method, Kathleen Stanford Grant. She completed Cara’s “Kathy Grant Heritage Training” in 2014, and is constantly utilizing the brilliant exercises and verbal cues that Grant developed for her own students to better understand the complexities of Mr. Pilates’ “Contrology.”

In addition to her Pilates teaching, Danielle danced professionally from 1999 to 2020 in both modern and aerial dance companies in the Denver/Boulder area; most notably with Evolving Doors Dance, 3rd Law Dance/Theater for 15 years, and with Frequent Flyers for the 20 years. Much of Dani’s teaching is highly influenced and informed by the nuances of dance technique and the rigors of aerial training. In March of 2020, at the beginning of the shutdown, Dani moved from Colorado back to California to create a new life that includes online teaching, step-children, home ownership, pet chickens, rock climbing, an aerial circus group, and other epic adventures. Dani is thankful for the strength and movement awareness she has gained in her personal practice of the Pilates Method, dance, and aerial training, and is eager to share the gift of movement with others.

Talia Nero, Expert Pilates Teacher
Talia Nero, Expert Teacher

Talia first began her Pilates studies in the 1980’s,  while training as a ballet dancer at both Marin Ballet and The University of Utah.  She has been teaching in the Bay Area for over fifteen years. Talia is  trained and certified by her mentor Dorothee Vandewalle; who was the protege of and taught with Romana Kryzanowska in New York for over a decade.  Talia teaches the original, authentic Pilates Method as now handed down by Dorothee.

Talia teaches all ages, levels and varying fitness goals.  She enjoys working with those seeking better overall conditioning,  improved performance and recovery from injury. She has worked with professional dancers and students of the San Francisco Ballet as well as elite athletes.  She has also developed a ballet barre class to assist Alzheimer’s and dementia patients with recall,  motor skills and balance.

Talia believes that Pilates can be enjoyed by anyone at any age and is an accessible training method for all.

Talia holds a Bachelors Degree in Ballet Pedagogy and Communications from the University of Utah, founded by William Christensen of San Francisco Ballet and a  Masters Degree in Communications a.b.d. from the University of Oregon.
Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Shana Morrison

Shana Morrison, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Saw

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Open Leg Rocker

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m singing and performing with my band.

After 30 years training in ballet and gymnastics, Shana Morrison began practicing Pilates in 2000 when a knee injury from dance led her to study new methods of strengthening and centering. Surprised and impressed with the results of her practice, Shana pursued teaching Pilates and became certified in the Pilates Method at the Ellie Herman Studios (Author, Pilates for Dummies, Get on the Ball with Pilates, etc.) in 2004. Since then she has taught private apparatus sessions, duets, and classes in Marin County, San Francisco, and Silicon Valley. To expand upon her education in body movement and functionality, Shana has attended Gyrotonic, Gyrokenesis, and Franklin Method training workshops, and in 2011 completed certification as a personal trainer She enjoys sharing her knowledge of classical pilates method with students of all levels of ability, raw beginner to seasoned pro, and encourages Pilates skills in all movement pursuits.

Internal Fire Pilates - Ilana Murphy, Certified Teacher

Ilana Murphy, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: So many favorites to choose from! I always love Big Twist.

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on:  All the split variations on the Reformer. And most of the exercises that involve going upside down.

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m outside moving in nature.

“Ilana has enjoyed teaching and exploring Pilates for over a decade. She first discovered this approach to informed movement via physical therapy following a car accident. She soon realized the many benefits it offers, including a fun weekly workout, balanced strength, and support for participating in life’s other activities with grace and resilience.  

Ilana was certified by Pilates Education Lab and Ellie Herman Studios and does ongoing continuing education, most recently with The Pilates Workshop, S.F. (a satellite studio of The Pilates Center, Boulder). Ilana has also been a yoga instructor for 20 years and is currently training in the MELT method. She is certified by Balanced Body to teach their Anatomy in 3-D curriculum. 

In addition to teaching Pilates, Ilana is a licensed acupuncturist, herbalist, bodyworker, and practitioner of Functional/Integrative Medicine. Learn more about her practice here: ebbflowhealth.com

Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Lisa Prewitt

Lise Prewitt, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Footwork on the Reformer

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Anything that opens my chest!

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I am out hiking and continually exploring health and wellness

Lise Prewitt began taking movement lessons as soon as she could walk. She was introduced to movement imagery and anatomy as a child through Idiokinesis.. This was the beginning of a strong background in understanding the body and for creating a great body awareness. She majored in biology and chemistry while continuing to study and perform modern dance. She was introduced to pilates in 1994 while performing with a dance company, and then in 1996, after injuries from a car accident limited her abilities to dance and perform, she began to learn to teach pilates. She has taught for both Ellie Herman’s and Balanced Body’s pilates teacher training programs. With two decades of pilates teaching she also incorporates the neuromuscular techniques of Vladamir Janda, yoga, Feldenkrais, Franklin Method and her love of athletics and movement. She is a certified MELT Level 1 practitioner and also teaches MELT Hand and Foot techniques. Her teaching is informed through technical understanding of anatomy and biomechanics, her intuitive sense of the body and her keen observation of posture and movement. She enjoys working with people of all fitness levels as well as with people who have neurological conditions and those recovering from injuries.

Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Fernanda Repsold

Fernanda Repsold, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Footwork

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Head Harness and Toe Corrector exercises

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m spending time with my family and more

A resident of Mill Valley and parent of two, Fernanda joined the Internal Fire Pilates team in 2013.  

Fernanda enjoys working with people from all walks of life and is especially interested in applying Classical Pilates, and other functional movement modalities such as Gyrotonic® and Yoga as a mean of stimulating the body’s natural ability to heal. Her style of teaching fosters a collaborative process of discovery, combining form and function, while always looking to the whole body to create a supple and uniformly developed structure. Fernanda holds a B.A. and minor from the University of California Berkeley, and currently takes pre-med courses to prepare for study towards a Doctor of Physical Therapy degree.

Certifications:

Advanced Pilates Teacher Training

 Pilates Master’sProgram

 Yoga Teacher Training

 GYROTONIC® Level 1

 GYROTONIC® Level 2 – pre training

 GYROKINESIS® Level 1- pre training

 Specialized Gyrotonic Equipment: Jumping Stretching Board

Marianne Shih, Expert Teacher
Marianne Shish, Expert Teacher

Marianne hails from Dallas, TX where she has been teaching Pilates and personal training since 2013. After completing her comprehensive teacher training through Power Pilates, Marianne went on to work with professional athletes, chronic injuries, and clients with neurodegenerative diseases through premier fitness clubs, private homes, and assisted living facilities.

Prior to her full-time Pilates career, Marianne graduated from the University of Texas at Dallas and went on to work in the nonprofit sector as a fundraiser and then as an assistant at a tech company. Seeking a way to bring more movement and creativity into her life, she embarked on a journey as a performing cirque artist through booking agencies in Dallas, specializing in contortion, aerial, and partner acrobatics. She credits Pilates for helping her recover expeditiously from both shows and multiple injuries.

Marianne believes in the power and adaptability of Pilates to fit anyone – no matter your fitness level or prior experience, there is a Pilates session that is right for you! She is excited to teach in the Bay area and to assist clients with meeting their movement and wellness goals in collaboration with the rest of the studio.
Internal Fire Pilates - Teacher Danielle Williams

Danielle Williams, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Teaser–on the mat, on the Reformer, Tower, Wunda Chair, everywhere

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Going up Front balance on the Wunda Chair

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m on or near the water with Johnny and our dog Coco, studying Zen art,  and working on my Pilates mat practice.

Bio: Danielle Williams was introduced to Pilates in 2000, when her then-boyfriend and now life partner was just completing his Pilates Teacher Training program. It was love right from the start—of the boyfriend and of Pilates. Her love for Pilates became even stronger when she met Sharon Gallagher-Rivera and experienced the transformative power of the Pilates Method in a deeper way than she ever had before. Danielle began her comprehensive teacher training in early 2020 with the Pilates Education Lab, under the direction of Sharon and Carol LeMaitre.

Internal Fire Pilates - Apprentice Teacher Mariette Lapiz

Mariette Lapiz, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Parakeet

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Backbend

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m spending time with my husband and two dogs, hiking, sailing, and kayaking.

A passionate student of Pilates since 2012, Mariette decided to pursue teaching by joining the Pilates Education Lab Teacher Training in 2017. Mariette has always been a fitness enthusiast and enjoys many forms of exercise. She spent several years training in power and Olympic lifting and the Russian Kettlebell method. She now spends most of her time focusing on her Pilates practice. For her, Pilates awakens the connection of mind and body, keeps the body healthy, and aids in preventing and healing injury.

Mariette has experienced the many benefits of Pilates and wants to share them with others.

Jayne Reichert Expert Pilates Teacher

Jayne Reichert, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Hmm. this is a shocker, swan on the ladder barrel; almost anything on the chair (during the pandemic I bought my own for home practice) and something I can’t believe long back stretch on the reformer.

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Seems like a “loaded” question:-).  but the two I struggle most with are stomach massage and climb a tree. I’m sure there are a ton of others!

When I’m not in the Pilates studio: You’ll find me either behind the stove at a client’s home; perusing the local farmer’s market in search of the perfect tomato or most fragrant apple; home in my kitchen playing and creating new plant-based yumminess or perhaps hosting a cooking class.  If all else fails, head to the beach I’ll be hiking with my dog, Wilson or on the bay paddleboarding.

Jayne or our “Chef” Jayne, as some of you may know her, is not new to the studio; she started the teacher training program some time ago but was offered a private chef opportunity that derailed her schedule and then well there was the pandemic.  

This year after 5 years as a private chef to one of our Golden State Warriors, she’s decided to return to the studio to complete her apprentice training and perhaps down the line figure out how to weave a thread through two disciplines she loves and finds personally rewarding. 

You may ask, why Pilates?  Working out and staying fit has always been very important, it’s invaluable in the kitchen, but after 20 + years on her feet and a surfing accident, (the board went one way and her knee the other) she found herself in a Pilates class to rehabilitate her knee without surgery or loss of time at work. 

The idea of not just movement but the whole mind body breath connection and the concept of returning to movement or rather finding freedom in movement by connecting all the parts reminded her of the kitchen and creating a meal or recipe where the sum of all those parts created something memorable for someone. Pilates is a humbling experience for her; it doesn’t care how many years or days of the week you’ve been working out, or even what level you are at in your own practice. Every day in Pilates can be different, weaknesses show themselves quickly, one day you’re able to do a particular exercise and the next day?  but the advantage is that there is always movement, not just movement but conscious movement and you always return to the “practice”. It’s challenging for sure! That challenge energizes and inspires her and what she hopes too share and pass on to others as she continues her teaching journey and fine tuning her own practice. 

Internal Fire Pilates - Expert Teacher Heather Arnett

Heather Arnett, Expert Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: Whichever one I’m doing…No, seriously.

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: everything on the Ladder Barrel because I love that apparatus and am envious that I don’t have enough space to own one. Grr!

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m either hiking, diving, rafting, running, dancing, singing, cooking OR making performance art about gender based violence.

Heather Arnett (she/they) is a BASI certified Pilates Instructor with an M.S. in Kinesiology from Western Illinois University (’03) who combines Neurokinetic Therapy (NKT) and fascial release with classical Pilates to help people explore and expand their movement potential. Heather is also a Certified Movement Analyst (Integrated Movement Systems ’06), a level one NKT practitioner, and an enthusiastic student of human anatomy with over 120 hours of live dissection at the Institute for Anatomical Research in Colorado Springs, CO. Heather’s weapons of choice are joy and humor.

Internal Fire Pilates - Apprentice Teacher Kym Jaros

Kym Jaros, Apprentice Teacher

My favorite Pilates exercise is: anything on the Cadillac/Tower

The exercise I would like to spend more time working on: Teaser on all apparatus and mat

When I’m not in the Pilates studio, I’m hiking with my dog, Harley

Kym was introduced to Pilates in 2006 after a fall that resulted in cervical surgery. Her Neurosurgeon recommended Pilates for Rehab to help her with mobility issues. Spinal surgery forever changed her life, however, Pilates gave her the confidence and support to rediscover movement and to approach life in a new way post-surgery.

In March 2020, Kym began studying her full comprehensive classical training under Sharon Gallagher- Rivera. Since then, she has taught private apparatus sessions, duets, and classes in Marin County.

Kym is a dedicated teacher who tailors each session based on the individual’s needs. Her goal is for her clients to walk away from the session learning something new about Pilates and feeling a positive change in their body from the movement.

Kym enjoys sharing her knowledge of classical Pilates method with students of all levels, and can’t wait to share it with you!

Admin Staff


Sharon Gallagher-Rivera – Owner and Ring Leader

Stacy Phelan – Mama of Marketing and Operations 

Susan Tobiason – Designer and Social Media Maven

Danielle Williams – Director of Happiness and Studio Flow