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About us

 Destin Pilates and Aerial has a dynamic team of professionals who will encourage and empower you to be The Best YOU CAN BE. 

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Susan

 Susan Authement Dunnam is the Owner/ Director of Destin Pilates and Aerial and Destin Girls Retreats. Susan opened in the summer of 2009 in a friend's home with only one reformer and one client. Susan quickly expanded as her client base grew and now has many regular or 2nd home clients. Susan has been a pioneer in the area being the first studio owner to bring in many new fitness trends including Aerial Fitness and truly has the heart of an entrepreneur.

 Susan, originally from Louisiana, moved to Memphis in the 1970's and grew up a part a very active "tennis family" and has always loved physical fitness. She fell in love with Pilates in 1995 after injuring her back in a snowboarding accident while living in Aspen, Colorado. After doing Yoga for years with minimal back relief, she  found after just one private session on the Reformer that her back pain had ceased and she was hooked.

 Susan continually updates and advances her education through Pilates workshops and conferences and is always looking to bring the newest cutting edge fitness to the area. Susan is fully committed to spreading the message of "The Pilates Method" as a lifestyle. If you are able to move you are able to do Pilates! Always a dedicated professional, Susan is passionate about inspiring and motivating people to achieve and exceed their fitness goals. Though her unique style of teaching and dynamic positive energy, Susan delivers a workout that produces dramatic results and major transformation in her clients bodies.

 Susan currently holds Pilates certifications with The PhysicalMind Institute, Balanced Body University, Power Pilates and The Ellie Herman Studios (700 hour comprehensive). Ellie Herman has studios in both New York and California, wrote Pilates For Dummies and created the Springboard which is marketed exclusively with Balanced Body. Susan has also completed an intensive teacher training with Aircat Aerial at The Boulder Circus Arts Institute in 2010 and  Aerial Silks and Aerial Hammock Level 1 Training with Lesley Vaughn of Cirque Du Soleil in 2011.  She is currently on the Prophetic Healing and Deliverance team under Apostles Sharon and Bob Parkes at Christian International and the Gatekeepers Ministry Team with Apostles Kimberly and Martin Watts. She is an active member of Vision Church at Christian International and has a heart to set the captives free.

Heather

Originally from Seneca, MO, I moved to the Gulf Coast at a young age. Soon after meeting the guy I would eventually grow up, marry, and start a family with. I now have 2 children ages 9 and 4. I have worked along side my husband for several years and after my second child, I decided it was time to focus on myself. That's where my love for fitness and a healthy well being came to be. I love running and have participate in several 5k-10ks. I completed my first Triathlon in 2014. Along with running, I focus on Yoga, Pilates, and on occasion Barre.

This love has brought me to my newest passion, Aerial Silks. I only hope to continue to perfect my skill and be the best that I feel that I can me. Helping others fine the passion in this unique/hard/ yet rewarding challenge, along the way.

Mary

Originally from the Carolinas, Mary grew up on a barrier island, vacationed in the mountains and

has a love for the beauty of nature. In 1999 her husband’s military career brought them to Destin and they fell in love with the crystal clear water and white sand beaches.

Mary is passionate about MindBody exercise and the ability to bring awareness to what the bodyis

experiencing at the present moment. She has practiced Yoga for over 20 years and Pilates since

2000 and feels that the two disciplines create a healthy body and mind.

In 2014 she began taking private Pilates on the Reformer to help recover from surgery. She loved the challenge, attention to detail, and focus on anatomy. Her experience was so transformative that in 2015 she began Balanced Body Comprehensive Pilates Teacher Training.

In 2016 Mary expanded her training to include Aerial Hammock and Yoga teacher. Aerial

Hammock provides a supportive platform for Pilates or Yoga and is versatile enough for

restorative or conditioning fitness...and it's fun!

As of Spring 2017 Mary has over 400 hours teaching as an Apprentice Pilates Instructor. She has had many inspirational moments sharing the Pilates Method with clients and enjoys being a part of their personal transformation. Mary hopes to help others become more in tune with their

bodies, to heal, strengthen and/or increase flexibility for a better quality of life. Rather than

striving for perfection, she encourages everyone to leave their ego at the door and keep an open mind. When not in the studio Mary enjoys spending her time hiking, camping, kayaking, scuba diving and beach combing .​

Leah

Leah is a Registered Nurse new to sunny Destin, having moved from Los Angeles in the summer of 2017, and she is thrilled to become a part of this friendly beach community.

She grew up with an active lifestyle and a love of dance and fitness. Then after 10 years of working as a pediatric ICU nurse, Leah learned Pilates to combat the mental and physical fatigue of the job and found a workout that re-energized not only her body but also her mind and kept her going on those long stressful days. Her love for fitness led her to a Pilates certification from Body Arts and Science International (BASI) in 2016, where she taught for a year under the guidance of internationally renowned Pilates innovator Real Isacowitz.

She takes great pride in sharing the immense benefits of Pilates with her clients through invigorating fitness sessions. She is also pursuing further certifications in TRX and BASI’s Master Level certification. Her teaching style is fun, fresh, challenging, and energizing.



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Mackenzie


Growing up most of my life here in this small town of Destin, FL I have always loved the new season each year brings us with new faces and people to connect with. I had always played soccer from age 6 through high school so being on the go and physically active was already a part of me. I came across Aerial in January 2015, which led me to a new adventure. After taking class for a year, I came aboard and received my aerial teaching certification. I have been involved with the studio since then and can't get enough of hanging upside down and flying through the air on a silky fabric.

I enjoy every minute of teaching, training, and socializing in the studio!

Outside of the studio, my husband and I are busy raising our brand new baby girl who was born in March 2017, and chasing after our Golden Retriever puppy. I love having Aerial as a way to rest my mind while making my body stronger. Finding aerial as a new part to my journey was what I needed, and especially here at Destin Pilates & Aerial.

Lauren M.

Originally from Mobile, AL, I moved to Destin in 2006 after graduating from the University of Alabama. I have over 17 years of dance experience, am an avid runner, and have always enjoyed physical fitness. When I found Pilates in 2009, ​I fell in love. It has given me great results, and I credit Pilates with helping me to get back to my pre-baby body. I am currently undergoing the Balanced Body University Pilates teacher training, and hope to share my knowledge with you! When I am not in the studio, I enjoy spending time with my husband and our two children. I am grateful to have found such a wonderful home at Destin Pilates and Aerial.

Lauren Noonan

Having grown up in Mobile Alabama I have always had a passion for coastal living. Prior to living in Destin I was a pharmaceutical sales representative in both Mobile and Fort Lauderdale. In 2007 my husband and I relocated to Destin, FL​ to find a “slower paced” way of life and instantly fell in love with this area.

I have over 15 years of experience in gymnastics and ballet both training and instructing. Throughout my life I have had such enthusiasm for unique and innovative exercise methods, which is what ultimately led me to Aerial Silks. I have received my Aerial Teacher Teaching through Destin Pilates and Aerial Center and have trained under Lesley Vaughn of Cirque du Soleil. I have been teaching Aerial Silks 3 years and am currently going through Balanced body University Pilates Teacher Training. I am combining my love of both Aerial and Pilates having truly discovered my passion and found a home at Destin Pilates and Aerial.

Lauren Peebles

Lauren loves challenges, traveling and new experiences and that is what brought her to aerial silks. She relocated to the area from San Francisco three years ago and has been living the Gulf Coast ever since. She recently received two masters’ degrees in Education and has been teaching kindergarten for the past three years.

Lauren has also trained with renowned aerialist Lesley Vaughn of Cirque du Soleil. An avid lover of yoga, painting, surfing, skateboarding and hula-hooping, she is a jack of all trades and you will feel like your reading a suspenseful book in her class. Come join Lauren and learn to write your own story. She is currently training Balanced Body Barre and Yoga after 15 years of devoted practice.

Amanda Jo

Amanda Jo has over 11 years of personal training experience. Her passion is to create a healthy and balanced life through all different aspects of fitness and nutrition. Each client is unique and each program she designs is custom based on their individual needs, goals, and lifestyle to obtain the best results.

Amanda Jo is a Certified Personal Trainer and Sports Nutrition Specialist with ISSA. She studied Exercise Science at JSU. A TRX Qualified Instructor and BOSU Certified Trainer. APS Nutrition Brand Ambassador, Nutrition/Fitness Blogger, and Fit Mom.

Anna

Anna Kris started her career in the health and fitness industry in 2000 when she graduated from Massage Therapy school in Lapeer, Michigan. After practicing Massage Therapy and body-work for seven years, she decided to further her education with study of the Pilates Method while living in California. She took the next four years working at 2 different studios learning both classical and progressive styles of the Pilates Method.

This study led her to years of study and practice in Corrective Exercise or Rehab exercise therapy. With her background in Massage Therapy, including Myofascial release she saw the solid connection between proper soft tissue release work and correct movement patterns to help not only get rid of chronic pain but to become incredibly strong.

While learning new techniques and principles she furthered her education with a certification through the National Academy of Sports Medicine in Personal Training. Since then she's taken numerous Fitness Certifications including: TRX Suspension Group Training, Red Cord (formerly Active Core) The WillPower Method of Barefoot training to name a few.

Her love of people and movement makes her classes fun and challenging. She truly loves teaching and helping people of all kinds.

"Teaching the Pilates method brings me joy and a feeling of accomplishment since helping people is so fulfilling. Every little bit helps when it comes to learning how to move better, feel better, live better."

Mary H

Nurse Mary Horwitzs' approach to teaching Pilates and Yoga comes from a place of wellness promotion. After practicing as an oncology nurse for 20 years at St. Jude, Mary took her own passion for fitness and health to a new level. She first certified in Pilates from Ellie Herman Studios in San Francisco and further certified in yoga from Om Yoga in New York City. Mary’s approach to teaching is one of combining mind, body and spirit……and Fun! Mary’s clients are both athletes and those with health care needs. Getting strong and fit while having a good time doing it is her desire for all. Email [email protected] or 901-484-4366.

Lesley

Lesley Vaughn was born in Mammoth Lakes, California and grew up in South America. Her family started a Christian ministry, called 'For His Children,' that cares for abandoned children in Quito, Ecuador. After attending the University of California Santa Barbara, she moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career as a dancer. After a few years of working as a dancer, she discovered aerial and fell in love immediately. She has since done live performances for Kanye West, Jennifer Lopez, Beats Antique, Korean Band JYJ, Paris By Night and danced for the MLS soccer team Chivas USA.

She has worked on commercials for Justin Bieber, Hiedi Klum, Vitamin Water, and Shisheido. Lesley also has performed in music videos and done TV appearances such as HBO's Big Love and Hip Hop Abs. She has taught dance and aerial for many years and is always interested in how to further deepen and enrich her knowledge of her art and loves to inspire others to do the same. She is a part of the with Cirque Du Soleil family having appeared in Zumanity for a year and is currently in their very popular water show O in Las Vegas.