VIDA Instructor Profile: Katie Mason-Brown
By: Elise Chretien
Pilates instructor Katie Mason-Brown is not the first person who has told me that joining VIDA changed her life, but she certainly shows her passion for the VIDA community within seconds of sitting down with me. Katie currently teaches mat and reformer Pilates, RX and VIDA Body, and shares with me how she transitioned from a coffee shop owner to a full time fitness enthusiast.
As the former co-owner of Chinatown Coffee Company, Katie had no idea five years ago when she signed up for a membership at VIDA Verizon down the street that it would be the beginning of a major life transformation. She began training with Kristin Tamasulo, taking VIDA classes, and eventually started teaching her own classes as her passion for fitness grew. When Katie started practicing Pilates with Verizon Group Fitness Manager Tami DeVitis, she knew she had found her calling.
“Tami introduced me to the joys of both mat and reformer Pilates. I quickly fell in love with it and started going to New York with her to train to be an instructor,” she says.
After going through a divorce and willingly looking to start a new life chapter, becoming a Pilates instructor was the perfect opportunity for Katie to leave the coffee shop behind and pursue a line of work she was passionate about.
“I could finally take the advice I had always been given – which is to follow your passion. If you’re lucky enough to do what you love for a living you should absolutely do it,” says Katie. “This is the happiest and healthiest I’ve been in a long time. I love my job and I love my clients!” she says.
If there’s one class she’s most passionate about – it’s definitely Pilates Reformer. She explains that doing Pilates on a reformer allows you to push yourself further in a safe, controlled manner that you’re not able to reach on a mat.
“The reformer provides both assistance and resistance – you can go deeper into any exercise or stretch. The resistance is in a controlled but unstable environment that really challenges your core in a way that mat Pilates can’t. It’s definitely worth the extra cost!” she says.
It’s easy to see how much Katie loves her job here at VIDA. She explains to me that even on mornings when she’s tired and moving slowly her clients keep her energized and excited about the day ahead.
“The members here are just fantastic. I’ve been at other gyms but it’s not quite the same sense of family that we have here. VIDA attracts people that make me a better person and who I want to be around,” she says with a smile.
When Katie’s not teaching or attending other instructors’ classes for new ideas, you can find her jogging, watching movies with her two pre-teen boys at home, or baking.
“I like to bake really unhealthy things. Like oatmeal raisin cookies!” she exclaims (this answers my next question, of what her favorite cheat meal is!)
“I also recently introduced my boys to High Teas and getting foot massages. But they would kill me if they knew I told you that!” she says with a laugh.
If you’ve wanted to try a class at Verizon or City Vista, look for Katie’s name on the schedule. But beware; her enthusiasm for fitness and the VIDA family is highly contagious!