Twice a week, Judy Simonsen drives 100 miles round-trip from north Scottsdale to east Mesa to “Karve” her body. She makes the trek to K Pilates for Karve, a body-sculpting class taught by Kendra Jordan.
“Just doing that two hours of Karve a week has made a big difference for me,” says Simonsen, 48, who has been taking the class for six months. “It’s definitely a workout.” She said it took six sessions before she noticed a physical difference.
“It has actually changed my body,” she says. “It has made my clothes fit better. I lost inches. My abs are a lot tighter. I have a tighter seat and I have become firmer.”
Jordan, 30, who has taught the class for six months, says Karve has been around for half a century.
“It’s based off something called the Lotte Berk Method,” says Jordan — a melange of strength training, dance, orthopedic back exercises and hatha yoga rolled into an intense hourlong workout invented by Berk, a German dancer. “It’s really popular among women because it’s an efficient workout. It gets your heart rate up and you burn fat — especially for women that are really busy and they want a great physique. They can do that with this one class.
“It gives you that long, lean dancer’s physique, which is what women want.”
Jordan first took the class three years ago in San Francisco, and was hooked.
“I had never done anything like it,” she says. “I was really surprised with how intense it was. It kind of fills out the areas that Pilates may miss in terms of intensity and muscle burn. ... I was blown away by the result that I saw.”
Jordan says that after seeing how popular Karve was in cities such as San Francisco, Detroit, Los Angeles and Boston, she decided to incorporate it into her studio.
“Every one of these studios had a really loyal following,” she says. “I really wanted to bring something that was special and different out here.”
Adriane Blewitt uses Karve as a method to help her train for next year’s Olympics, where she’ll compete in shot put.
“I’m using Karve as a workout for flexibility and strengthening,” says Blewitt, 27, of Scottsdale. “My flexibility has increased tremendously and I’ve noticed it’s helped out my training. ... I’m more aware of how to stretch my body where it’s sore and how to identify the soreness.”
The schedule of Karve classes at K Pilates, 3514 N. Power Road, Mesa, is at kpilates.com.
Fee schedule: one class, $20; three classes for new clients, $45; five classes, $95; 10 classes, $180; 20 classes, $340; 30 classes, $480. An unlimited month of classes is $100 for new clients, $175 for returning clients.
K Pilates will hold a Karve boot camp beginning Jan. 14. Classes will be held at 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 7:15 a.m. Saturday. Cost: $300.
Information: (480) 840-1860