Studio History
    The Studio • History

    A Sewanee alum, who was attending Kim’s Beginner Pilates Class at Chattanooga State was impressed with her unique teaching style and thought it would be of benefit to the Sewanee Community. She invited Kim to teach a Beginner Pilates class for the Sewanee Community at the Fowler Center Gym on the University of the South Campus. The class of 10 started in September 2007 and met twice a week. Private sessions in personal training and Pilates were quickly added.

    By the fall of 2010 Kim was teaching a full schedule of classes, privates and duets three days a week and two sections of Beginning Pilates had been added to the University’s Physical Education classes. In January of 2014 Kim was able to reserve the dance studio in Fowler from 8 am- 4 pm five days a week. Despite the extended hours, the allotted time in the dance studio quickly filled and a waiting list for privates and duets began to form. At this point Kim felt that God was leading her to open her own studio to accommodate the growing demand for her unique educational and healing techniques. The subsequent journey included a building project, holding classes outdoors in Angel Park and on the front porch of her rental home during Covid and finally renting the American Legion Hall which gave opportunity for growth and for massage therapist Matthew Sias to come on board.

    In the fall of 2021 Kim and her husband Bob, noticed a picturesque stone house for sale on Ball Park Road. The house had been built in 1948 by master stonemason and later head of plant services for the University, Carl Reid. As Kim looked at the beautiful and unique woodwork, stained glass windows, ornate light fixtures and large rooms, she realized that the house could be both a studio with a peaceful, retreat-like atmosphere and beauty as well as a functional living space for the couple. The house was already under contract but the Butters decided to put in a back-up contract on faith that God was providing this house to meet both needs. They got the amazing news that they were now the primary contract on Kim’s birthday in late September. They closed on the house in November and she and Bob moved into the residence part in January 2022 and Bodyworks Youniversity opened in the business part at the end of February 2022. She and Matthew Sias were then joined there by Pilates instructor Bruce Manuel, Yoga instructor Robie Jackson and You Fit instructor Betsy Miller to complete the Bodyworks Youniversity Wellness Studio.

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      Kim Butters
      Kim Butters

      “I believe that movement education is a talent that God has blessed me with. Nothing gives me greater joy than to help relieve someone’s pain and teach them how to stay pain free.”

      Kim Butters was a middle school teacher in Marion County for nine years. Stress contributed to her being overweight and inflexible. “I was miserable, had low self-esteem, and trouble keeping up with my husband on hikes. A neighbor convinced me to go to an aerobics class with her. I loved it and began to pursue a more enjoyable, healthy life.” She became an AFAA certified Personal Trainer and Group Instructor in 2001 and left the Marion County School system to start her own fitness business from her home.

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      Kim would soon discover Pilates, her true passion, at Barking Legs Theater in Chattanooga. "Pilates instructors seemed to have a different—a more healing understanding—of the body. I wanted that!” She became a certified Pilates instructor in 2005 at Corebodyworks in Atlanta and a Pilates Method Alliance certified Instructor in 2010. She worked for nine years in larger studio in Chattanooga and worked part-time as a physical therapy technician.

      She has been teaching fitness classes onsite and online for Chattanooga State since 2001 and was invited in 2007 to teach Pilates to the Sewanee community at the University of the South, where she also teaches Beginning Pilates as a PE class.

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      Kim trained in classical and contemporary approaches to Pilates and studied with Pilates Elders (students of Joseph Pilates), Mary Bowen and Jay Grimes, as well as second generation teachers (trained by an Elder), Michele Larsen, Rebecca Leone and Marie José Blom. She has also completed course work with world-renowned stretching expert, Kit Laughlin, and facial mapping expert, Phillip Beech, author of Muscles and Meridians. She most recently studied with Madeline Black, international leader in Pilates instruction and movement education and author of Centered.

      Pippa Browne
      Pippa Browne

      Pippa was born and lived most of her life in Zimbabwe, Africa. In 1985, she obtained a bachelor’s degree in fine art and psychology and post-graduate diploma in art, counseling and math education from the University of Natal, South Africa.

      After graduating, Pippa taught, travelled and exhibited her art in Zimbabwe the UK and Europe. She started exploring yoga as a means to maintain strength and flexibility. In the early 2000s (when she moved to the US), she started a consistent practice and study of yoga and in 2010 was asked to teach a Vinyasa flow class at the YMCA in Salinas, CA, which she continued to do up until her move to Sewanee in 2015.

      In 2019, Browne pursued an Ashtanga and Kundalini Yoga teacher training in Birmingham, AL. She uses these deep, ancient practices to inform her life, art, and yoga teaching.

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      Betsy Miller
      Betsy Miller

      Betsy moved from Gainesville, Florida to Sewanee in 2019, after retiring from a career in hospital pharmacy and healthcare management. A parent of an alumna (Kathryn C’17), her love of Sewanee developed during her daughter’s collegiate career. When Kathryn made Nashville her post-graduate home, Sewanee seemed the ideal spot for Betsy’s next adventure.

      Who knew this journey would lead her to become a Group Fitness Instructor? Encouraged by Kim Butters to pursue teaching and add to the fitness offerings at Bodyworks, Betsy achieved her ACE certification in 2021. An avid hiker, kayaker, and self-professed “gym rat” her cardio/strength classes are fun and energetic. Creating a welcoming environment that offers safe, effective exercise and improved fitness is her goal for you!

      When she’s not teaching, hiking, or in the gym, Betsy can be found maintaining trails with the Friends of South Cumberland State Park and volunteering with Housing Sewanee, Inc.

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      Hanna Stevens
      Hanna Stevens

      Hannah embarked on her personal training journey back in 2017, driven by her passion for fitness and her desire to help others achieve their health and wellness goals. She took the first step towards her career by becoming a certified personal trainer through the National Council on Strength and Fitness. Her initial experience was in a one-on-one personal training studio, where she honed her skills in tailoring workout programs to meet the unique needs and objectives of each individual client. Whether her clients sought to build strength, improve balance, enhance endurance, or undergo a total body transformation, Hannah was there to guide them on their fitness journey. Her clients ranged in age, showcasing her versatility in training people of all generations.

      During her time at the personal training studio, one of Hannah's clients recommended she explore the opportunities at Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation. Recognizing the potential to merge her medical assisting background with her personal training expertise to make a meaningful impact on patients and members, Hannah made the leap to join the Siskin team. At Siskin, she continued her role as a personal trainer, working with both hospital patients and fitness enthusiasts.

      It was at Siskin Hospital that Hannah expanded her knowledge and experience in training special populations, including those with unique medical needs and challenges. She also worked with individuals who simply desired greater comfort and confidence in a fitness and wellness environment. One of Hannah's true passions is transforming something intimidating into an enjoyable and fulfilling experience for anyone willing to try. She specifically focuses on empowering women to feel at ease in a weightlifting setting, allowing them to witness and feel the positive changes in their bodies while nurturing a wellness-focused mindset, rather than solely emphasizing aesthetics. This dedication to women's fitness and well-being is a core aspect of Hannah's life, and she warmly welcomes individuals of all experience levels, whether they are newcomers to the gym or seasoned fitness enthusiasts. Hannah is committed to helping everyone achieve their health and fitness goals while enjoying the journey along the way.

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    Matthew Sias

    Matthew Sias joined the US Navy in 1990, sparking his interest to achieve optimum physical health. That led him to want to help others do the same. He coached friends and soon learned that he could make a career out of it. Matthew then earned a BS in exercise science and a personal training certification, which he held for nearly 20 years. Then he attended Cumberland Institute to become a Massage Therapist.

    Matthew understands the importance of proper body mechanics, how the body works, and the importance of manipulating soft tissue, in order to obtain optimum physical performance. He learned that the more he worked with soft tissue, the less his clients were sore or injured and the better they felt.

    The combination of 18 years of personal training experience with his skills in massage therapy have proven to be powerful. In addition to relaxation massage, Matthew also assists clients with resolving a wide variety of physical ailments through a combination of massage and prescriptive ongoing body care.

    "If caught quickly, physical issues do not have to transition to chronic ailments." Matthew’s approach assists clients in minimizing the pain and movement limitations they may be experiencing from ongoing issues. Every person’s situation is unique, which means he has a new opportunity to assist someone and learn from each experience.

    Deep Tissue • Sports Massage
    Swedish Massage • Myofascial Release
    Stretching • Range-of-Motion

    Call or Text
    (615) 397-8348



293 Ball park Road
Sewanee, TN 37375
and on Zoom app

(423) 322-1443



Private sessions available by appointment.