About Our Studio and Instructors

The Core Connection Pilates  Studio is committed to the pursuit of optimal physical performance, injury prevention and well-being. Our friendly, non-competitive environment allows you to focus on your fitness goals while working at your own level. Our instructors are passionate about what they do and are anxious to share their knowledge and years of experience with you.


staff-cristaCrista Conwell

Studio owner, Crista Conwell, is a Huntsville native. She graduated from Falkner University in 2001 with a degree in Business Administration and worked 3 years for the University's admission and financial aid office.  Married with two daughters, Crista has also worked with her husband, a local lawyer.  Crista passion for Pilates began in 2005.  She fell in love with how it changed her body and posture.  "After I had my first child, Pilates helped me regain my strength and pre-baby body.  I was sold!"  Crista continues with a smile, "I wanted to share the benefits of Pilates with as many people as possible."  

Crista pursued her first certification to become a Pilates Mat instructor and began teaching classes at various gyms around Huntsville.  Always seeking to improve and learn, Crista found she wanted to be classically trained and sought certification through Peak Pilates.  With level I & II Certification training completed, Crista instructed at Body Re-Form Pilates Fitness Studio where she tought Pilates mat and reformer classes until it's closing in December 2013.
In January  2014, Crista opened The Core Connection Pilates Studio and teaches group classes, as well as private and duet sessions.  Continuing her Pilates education, she earned her Level 3, Comprehensive Certification from Peak Pilates in April of 2014.  

Crista is still looking ahead, "I always strive to continue to deepen my knowledge of the classical Pilates method.  I contuinue to attend workshops and continuing education seminars.   I love coming to the studio and working with my clients.  They allow me to live my dreams!"


debra-wadeDebra Wade

Debra Wade was born and raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia.  While working as an operations manager at FedEx in Norfolk, Virginia.  Debra started thinking about another line of work and went to a personal training convention in Baltimore, Maryland. was introduced to Pilates in 1994.  A Pilates mat class was offered at the convention and she took the class with 300 other people.  She was amazed by Pilates and how the moves challenged her body and mind.  Debra went back to Virginia Beach to find a Pilates instructor but didn't have any luck.  At the time,  no one had heard of Pilates.  .

Debra was promoted and moved to Richmond, Virginia.  Again, she looked for a Pilates instructor and again no one had heard of Pilates.  Six months later, she saw an ad in the local paper from a Pilates instructor new to the area looking for new clients.  She immediatly called and started taking 2 private sessions a week. After a year of taking private sessions, Debra's instructor suggestd she get certified in Pilates and start teaching.  Debra was still employed at FedEx at the time and simultaneously earned her certification through PhysicalMind Institute.  Debra started teaching Pilates mat classes at two different clubs in Richmond.  She also introduced Pilates to Capital Physical therapy Associates, and developed an exercise program with the firms existing patients to help them reach optimal function in their daily lives.

Two years later in 2001, Debra moved with her husband to Huntsville, Alabama where she had the opportunity to become a full time Pilates instructor.   She pursued classical certification through Peak Pilates.  On January 3, 2003, she opened Body Re-Form Pilates Fitness Studio as a fully equipped Pilates studio at The Interior MarketPlace in Brownsboro, Alabama.  Body Re-Form Pilates continued to grow and needed more space.  In January 2008, Body Re-Form Pilates moved to 250 Governors Drive and remained there until December 2013. 

Debra has continued her education in Pilates earning her Comprehensive Certification from Peak Pilates.  Debra is also a Yamuna Body Rolling practioner  and schedules privates sessions in Pilates and Yamuna Body Rolling.  She also teaches group classes  at the studio.  Debra shares, " I enjoy helping people feel better.  I love the wonderful people who come to the studio.  My goal is to continue to help people feel good about themselves and their bodies. "   Debra and her husband have two grown children and a dog.  She enjoys traveling, gardening, hiking, and especially Pilates!


staff-ainsleyAinsley Runels

Ainsley grew up in Trussville, AL where she attended Hewitt-Trussville High School.  She came to the Huntsville area by way of  a degree in Secondary Education Language Arts from the University of Alabama.  Her 15 years of teaching experience in the public school system have not only been rewarding and instructional, but also demanding.  

Ainsley began to research natural healing methods to help deal with the physical, emotional  and mental demands of her profession.  She explored the benefits of nutritional diet changes such as juicing, the physical and emotional benefits of Pilates, massages, rolfing, reflexology, electrodermal screening, acupuncture, chiropractic care as well as other healing arts.  As her overall health improved, she knew she wanted to help othes improve theirs.  Because Ainsley believes core strength is so necessary for overall health, she chose the Classical Pilates method as her specialty in the fitness world.  Ainsley is a Comprehensive Level 2 Peak Pilates instructor and offers training in classical mat, reformer, tower, chair and barrel.  She earned both of her certifications at the Pilates Atelier with Sonje Mayo (a first generaltion practioner who trained with Joseph Pilates himself).  

Ainsley is also a real eatate agent with Quest Real Estate and specializes in working with both buyers and sellers in the Madison County and surrounding areas.  In her free time, she enjoys hiking, camping and travel. 


staff-cindyCindy Sentel

Cindy is originally from Detroit, Michigan and is a graduate of Michigan State University. She worked in the retail industry for many years as a buyer, merchandiser, and manager. Most recently, she owned two home decorating and design stores in Indiana. She has lived in several areas and three years ago she, and her husband Dave, moved to Madison, Alabama.

Cindy started taking Pilates classes in 2007 at the local YMCA in Indiana, as a way to stay toned and limber. Her former instructor inspired her to look into Pilates as a new career. She chose Peak Pilates and Master Trainer, Sonje Mayo to pursue her Level I certification. “What I love about Pilates is that it for all ages, all body types, and can be suited for beginner to advanced students.”

When she is not teaching Pilates, Cindy continues to show her creative side with interior design work. She loves to spend time outdoors and walks/hikes daily. She can often be found planning her next travel excursion or entertaining her granddaughter and many nieces and nephews.

Contact Us

The Core Connection Pilates Studio
600 St. Clair Ave, Bldg. 4, Suite 8
Huntsville, AL 35801


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