Orlando | Arlington
Alia Staples

Alia Staples

Owner / Certified Pilates Instructor / Supervising Instructor

Alia has owned & operated The Pilates Loft Arlington, Virginia since 2014. Prior to opening the studio in Arlington, VA she was a full-time Pilates Instructor at The Pilates Loft in Orlando, Florida for four years. Alia has always had a passion for fitness, but a major spinal fusion surgery at the age of 15 challenged her to find ways to stay fit while accommodating a rigid spine.

She began practicing Pilates to introduce a new form of exercise into her fitness routine and was quickly impressed by the results. She noticed increased flexibility in her tight back and a substantial improvement in the strength of her core. As an avid runner, Alia firmly believes in practicing Pilates as a form of cross training. Alia earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in Communication and English from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA and worked in the public relations field for three years. She also earned her MBA at the University of Central Florida.

The Pilates Loft Arlington is a certification center for the NY Pilates Studio Teacher Certification Program through the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ® and Alia was invited to serve as a Supervising Instructor to future Pilates Instructors.

Alia's Path to Becoming a Pilates Instructor and Teacher

Alia received over 700 hours of intensive training at The Pilates Loft in Orlando where she trained extensively with owner Jennifer O'Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ®; and at The Pilates Haus in New Jersey with Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A. Jennifer and Brett were both certified by Joseph Pilates’ protégé, Romana Kryzanowska. Alia strives to educate herself completely in the principles of Authentic Pilates and share her passion for Pilates with her clients, instructors and apprentices.



Giulia Ambrogi

Giulia Ambrogi

Certified Pilates Instructor

Giulia has had a passion for fitness from a young age; trying a variety of different dance classes and recreational sports teams throughout grade school, including tap, jazz, swimming, softball & soccer. After college, while looking for new ways to keep active, Giulia found Pilates and was rapidly inspired by the practice. As her technique in Pilates advanced over the following years, so did her passion for the practice. Eager to expand her knowledge and share the Pilates method with others, she decided to become a Certified Pilates Instructor. Giulia graduated from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communication.

Giulia was certified in 2016 after completing over 700 hours of intensive training at The Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ®, Jennifer O'Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A., and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A.



Kelsey Ghannam

Kelsey Ghannam

Certified Pilates Instructor

Kelsey grew up as a competitive gymnast and dancer, and avid snowboarder. She received her Bachelor’s of Science degree in Nursing from the University of Delaware in 2011. When she started her career as a Registered Nurse she was looking for a form of exercise to strengthen her core, improve posture, and prevent back injuries, which commonly occur in her profession. She started taking Pilates lessons and immediately fell in love with the system and the results she saw. Kelsey decided to become a certified Pilates instructor to be able to share her passion for health and fitness with others.

Kelsey was certified in 2017 after completing over 700 hours of intensive training at the Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and the New York Pilates Studio ®, Jennifer O’Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A., and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A. She hopes to use the Authentic method to help clients feel and look their best.



Marisa Tordella

Marisa Tordella

Certified Pilates Instructor

Marisa is a PMA® Certified Pilates Teacher and is classically trained through the Power Pilates 600-hour comprehensive training program. She believes the beauty of Pilates lies in its ability to challenge both individuals who are new to physical fitness as well as elite athletes with years of training.

Marisa works with each client to accomplish his or her individual goals. Her mission is to challenge each client, while showing compassion for fears and limitations. She warmly welcomes all levels of clientele.

Her goal is to share her love of Pilates with all. She believes that movement heals and Pilates is for everybody!



Rhyla Holley

Rhyla Holley

Certified Pilates Instructor

Rhyla, born and raised in southern Indiana, was a competitive gymnast for over a decade. Throughout that time, she fell in love with the art of exercise, and gained an understanding and appreciation for the human body and movement. Her passion for staying fit was constant throughout her college career, and it inspired her to teach swimming lessons, instruct kick boxing classes, and serve as an intern at National Institute for Fitness and Sport (NIFS); a gym in Indianapolis that caters to amateur and professional athletes.

Years later, an old injury from childhood began to resurface, causing chronic lower back pain. A doctor’s prescription for Pilates was life changing, and she hasn’t looked back since. After her first class at The Pilates Loft in 2015, she was hooked. She rediscovered movement in her own body, the power of the authentic method, and her desire to share this knowledge with others.

Rhyla became a certified instructor in 2017 after completing over 600 hours of training at The Pilates Loft in Arlington, under the guidance of Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ®; Jennifer O'Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A.; and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A. Rhyla is eager to share her love of Pilates with her clients, and is committed to helping them reach their fitness goals.



Emily Giuliano

Emily Guiliano

Certified Pilates Instructor

Emily Guiliano began Pilates in 2015 when she was searching for an activity that would re-engage and re-energize the mind-body connection she knew and loved throughout her 15 years of martial arts training. Her previous evolution from student to sensei of Okinawan Karate, under Grand Masters Gregory and Judy Tearney (Syracuse, NY), made the progression of her practice of Pilates and joining the United States Pilates Association, LLC. certification program seem organic. She was proud to travel this new path to share her enjoyment and the benefits of Pilates with others.

Akin to her martial arts background, Emily appreciates the traditional training, mentorship, and ideology that the U.S.P.A. provides, as well as the instructor lineage which connects to Joseph Pilates through his protege Romana Kyrzanowska. Emily was certified in 2017 after completing over 600 hours of intensive training at the Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and the New York Pilates Studio ®, Jennifer O’Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A., and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A.

Emily holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business with a concentration in Management, Finance, and Economics, and values both the counterbalance and complimentary qualities that Pilates provides to her career.

Jennifer O'Mara

OWNER / TEACHER OF TEACHERS / CERTIFIED PILATES INSTRUCTOR

Jennifer has owned & operated The Pilates Loft since 2003. A graduate from the University of Florida, Jennifer’s background is firmly placed in Exercise Physiology with an emphasis in Physical Therapy. She studied Pilates under and was certified by Romana Kyrzanowska, Joseph Pilates’ protégé, in 2000. With a specialization in spine care, Jennifer found an easy transition from helping people find relief in the physical therapy arena to using Pilates to strengthen and eliminate most pain associated with the back and neck.

With a physical background beginning in gymnastics as a youth, power lifting through college and marathon training currently, Jennifer uses Pilates as a form of cross training to improve flexibility and core strength.

In 2009, The Pilates Loft was named a certification center for the NY Pilates Studio Teacher Certification Program through the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ® and Jennifer was invited to be a Teacher of Teachers. Since that time, she has continued her education with Brett Howard, the Director of Education for the program, and continues to pass that knowledge on to her instructors and apprentices.



Ellen Boyle

Ellen Boyle

Certified Pilates Instructor

Ellen Boyle began practicing Pilates twelve years ago while searching for relief from recurring back pain. After just a few group mat classes she realized both how out of shape she was after having three children, and how much she enjoyed the way Pilates made her feel. She stuck with the mat classes, and eventually mixed in apparatus lessons as well. Her back pain went away, she had more energy for her busy family, and she looked and felt better. Seeking a way to keep Pilates in her life for the long term Ellen got certified as a Pilates instructor, completing her 650-hour Comprehensive certification in 2007. She loves the energy of group classes and the ability to focus on individual needs during private apparatus lessons. Most importantly, she truly enjoys hearing about and seeing the positive impact Pilates has made in the lives of her students. Ellen regularly attends continuing education seminars to continually broaden her understanding of the Pilates Method and how it can be applied to a broad range of client needs.



Silvia Dreher

Silvia Dreher

Certified Pilates Instructor

Silvia grew up a dedicated student of ballet and was a boxer through college. After graduating with a B.A. in Economics from the University of Basel, Switzerland in 2009 and beginning her career in consulting, Silvia tried Pilates and found it a natural fit. She was a student of Pilates for several years before deciding to become a Certified Pilates Instructor in order to fully understand the exercises and to be able to share the method with others.

Silvia was certified in 2016 after completing over 700 hours of intensive training at The Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ®, Jennifer O'Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A., and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A. She is eager to share the Authentic Pilates method and to promote its benefits to her clients. Silvia is fluent in English, German and French.



Kara Trohaugh

Kara Trohaugh

Certified Pilates Instructor

Kara, a native of Pittsburgh, PA, has always been an avid lover of fitness, participating in dance and gymnastics as a child and later falling in love with running, spin classes, and swimming. After moving to Arlington, she was seeking to add variety to her usual workout regime and immediately fell in love with Pilates. Kara enjoys the increased core strength and lengthening of her muscles that can only be accomplished through Pilates. After her very first class at the Pilates Loft, she was hooked on the Authentic method and decided to become an instructor. A frequent traveler, Kara has continued her Pilates practice around the world, training in Bahrain, Germany, and Italy. Kara graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 2010 with a degree in Aerospace Engineering and received a professional Master of Science in 2013.

Kara was certified in 2017 after completing over 600 hours of intensive training at the Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio ®; Jennifer O'Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A.; and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A. She is eager to share her passion for the Authentic Pilates method with her clients to help them meet their fitness goals.



Melissa Guerro

Melissa Guerro

Certified Pilates Instructor

Melissa has always loved fitness and the benefits of a healthy lifestyle. In addition to Pilates, Melissa currently enjoys a variety of workouts including high intensity interval training and barre classes. She signed up for a class at the Pilates Loft and was hooked because she enjoyed the benefits of improved core strength and stability. She decided to share her new found passion with others and train to become a Pilates Instructor. Melissa received her Bachelor of Science degree in Management from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA. She also received a Master of Science degree in Career and Technical Education for Business and Information Technology from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA. Melissa is a high school teacher in Fairfax County and she enjoys helping others meet their goals and achieve their highest potential, whether in a formal classroom or a Pilates studio.

Melissa was certified in 2017 after completing over 700 hours of intensive training at the Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and the New York Pilates Studio ®, Jennifer O’Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A., and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A.



Lisa Dilliplane

Lisa Dilliplane

Certified Pilates Instructor

Lisa, originally from southern New Jersey, grew up a devoted student of dance and participated in swimming and figure skating over the years. She received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and History from Syracuse University, a J.D. from Rutgers School of Law-Camden, and a LL.M. from American University’s Washington School of Law. When she started her career, Lisa was looking for various ways to relieve stress and stay active and fell in love with running, yoga, and spin classes. She decided to try a class at the Pilates Loft to strengthen her abs and lower back as well as improve her posture. Lisa was hooked on the Authentic Pilates method after her first class because of the difference she felt from other Pilates classes. After being an avid student, Lisa decided to become certified to further learn the system and share her love of Pilates.

Lisa was certified in 2017 after completing over 600 hours of intensive training at the Pilates Loft in Arlington with Alia Staples, Supervising Instructor for the United States Pilates Association ® LLC and The New York Pilates Studio®; Jennifer O'Mara, Teacher of Teachers for the U.S.P.A.; and Brett Howard, Senior Teacher of Teachers and Director of Education for the U.S.P.A. She is excited to share the Authentic Pilates method with her clients to help them meet their fitness goals and look and feel their best.