Posts Tagged 'health'

Introducing our 2012 Ambassadors

Happy 2012 everyone!  Can you believe we have already wrapped up one month of the New Year?

This year is starting out just as busy and the old year ended for our CoreFitnessRoller® team, and I am happy to share that the response to the CoreFitnessRoller® continues to grow.

We are truly thrilled to see the number of trainers utilizing our equipment to help their clients kick off the new year in a positive, healthy, fashion.

Toward the end of last year we began our search for a few new CoreFitnessRoller® Ambassadors.  These certified trainers are true living examples of how positive movement patterns and balance create long term health and vibrancy.

They are amazing professionals who help their clients reach their personal health goals and live vibrant lives.

We received many submissions from amazing trainers around the world, and today we are thrilled to introduce you to our 2012 CoreFitnessRoller Ambassadors:

Diana Bustamante of Argentina

Diana defines herself as a Body-Mind personal trainer. As a Master Trainer who teaches fitness trainers how to incorporate body-mind techniques into their workouts, Diana’s specialties include Pilates, Stretching, posture and functional training. Her credentials are extensive and wide ranging. She is responsible for developing the first stretching for fitness program in Argentina in 1994, the first FitPilates mat program taught in gyms in Buenos Aires in 2000, and she has received several Fitness Awards in Argentina (Fitness Pioneer among them).

Diana has dedicated her life to promoting healthy styles of living, through teaching, writing articles, creating fitness and Pilates videos, performing at conventions and presenting on TV shows.

Diana first saw the CoreFitnessRoller in an advertisement in the IDEA Fitness Journal.

When I saw it for the first time I knew it was going to be THE equipment. The first thing I did when I arrived at World IDEA 2011 was to try the CFR in person and meet the inventor, Darya. I think the CFR is amazing because it allows multiple objectives to be completed with only one piece of equipment: balance, stability, strength, core control, flexibility, coordination, proprioception, and cardio!  You can do everything with the CFR, but it requires that you do it BETTER. With this tool, no cheating can happen. Pure control is required!


Sandie Hendrix of Indiana

As a teen, Sandie Hendrix, was a gymnast, a cheerleader and a Jazz dance enthusiast. In 2001 she started Pumps Fitness which offers group fitness, personal training and Pilates.

After an injury in 2003 and driven by extreme low back pain, Sandie was introduced to the miracle of myofascial release.

With this experience, Sandie focused her career on helping people to feel better. Working with young athletes and clients with Parkinson’s has meant a constant search for innovative exercises and tools to support this passion and commitment.

At Inner Idea Sandie was “WOW’d” by the CoreFitnessRoller.

“After 5 minutes on it, I purchased it. I have not been this excited about anything since I bought my first reformer. I can\’t wait to share this equipment with my clients and my fitness friends.  Thank you for exciting me all over again.”

Welcome aboard Diana and Sandie.  2012 is going to be an even better year with you on the team!


Customer Feedback

It’s so wonderful to hear feedback about users on the CoreFitnessRoller.  This past week, we received a wonderful Thank You card from Kristin in Jackson.  She wrote:

“Dear Darya – Thank You.  I am loving my new Core Fitness Roller – so fun!  My 6 year old daughter is way into it also.  We are going to use it for Pilates Day Celebrations.  Thank  you!” – Kristin Painter

It makes me so happy to see where we are able to enrich someone’s life with the gift of good health and fitness and I especially love that Kristin can share this with her daughter.  If you are enjoying your CoreFitnessRoller as much as Kristin, I’d love to hear from you.  Or if you haven’t yet experienced the CoreFitnessRoller, what type of exercises do you enjoy doing with your friend/s, child(ren) or partner in life?  And what is it that makes that exercise special for you?  Please share by sending me an email at or post on our Facebook page.

To view a full image of the card, please click on the image below.

Best in Health,


The Balancing Act: Family, Work and Health – How Do You Prioritize?

I’ve been off the blog for awhile; definitely somewhat off-keel in balance lately – very busy with growing Annovium, including travel, working with our factories, negotiating and evaluating partnerships, and all of the day-to-day work. On top of this, I really got thrown for a major loop in January with some major family health issues, especially regarding my father’s health.

My Dad and I

My father is one of those people who works and works and puts others’ needs before his own (yes I have learned this from him).  While he looks and acts very healthy, and in fact swims 3-4 days per week, I have always and only somewhat teasingly, given him a hard time about his exercise and eating habits.  I joke about his 4 food groups: grease, salt, sugar and miscellaneous.  This past Thanksgiving, Dad was having some shortness of breath which quickly developed into an arrhythmia by Christmas. He was acting fine nonetheless with no other symptoms to speak of, but his health quickly snowballed and we found ourselves in the hospital with him in January having not a double, not a triple, but a 6-bypass surgery combined with a mitral valve repair and a Patent Foramen Ovale repair.

After much recovery, rehab, and time, my Dad is finally doing better. Thanks to Lisa, his life partner, our wonderful family, our friends and the fantastic doctors and nurses who were so instrumental in Dad’s recovery, as they helped us better understand the term “normal recovery time.”

While my father was so ill, I still was managing our two businesses and as any entrepreneur understands, struggling with the interesting juggling act between business and personal priorities.  Throughout my Dad’s hospital stay, important business decisions, deadlines and schedule requirements still needed to be addressed. While I have a great team to support me (thank you – you know who you are!), I still was not able to completely step away to rest or to just be with my Dad.  I was up very early each morning and again late at night working to ensure that I was able to have my days with Dad.  I soon became extremely run down, sick and the reality set in that my own balance was completely off and that I wasn’t taking very good care of myself at all.  Workouts on the CFR, time to meditate and relax, eating healthy and consistently and even drinking enough water all completely went out the window. I was simply rushing from task to task, and email to email. One day as I was struggling to think through a simple question in an email, I really started thinking …

While it’s so important for me to make time for family and for business, it’s just as important for me to make time for myself, my exercise, my nutrition and even to take a few minutes each day to be present in quiet thoughts and to prioritize my intentions for the day.  I heard a question in my own head – “How do I walk my talk and consistently live my intentions on a daily basis?” I know many friends, even my Dad and some acquaintances who also struggle with this same question. Thankfully due to amazing surgeons and my Dad’s own courage as well healing time, my Dad is almost back to his own tough old bird, wonderful self.

What about me and my choices? While all the balls in the air can be an exciting challenge, I soon began to realize that not everything had to be done IMMEDIATELY.  My business is very important and fun for me.  I meet people all over the world who are passionate about health, fitness and teaching all the wonderful ways this can be applied in daily life.  But no matter how much I enjoy my work, I realize that I can’t function properly if my health is not a priority.  So knowing this, that while work is so important and so ingrained in so many of us, family and health are MUCH more important, I ask myself, “how do I consistently live my own health and vitality?”  While it’s cliché, we know that “work will always be there,” but quite frankly, without good health, we cannot work. From good habits around the decisions we make regarding our time, to the food we eat and the people and information we surround and engage ourselves with is so vital to maintaining our own health, our sanity and the vibrant energy we need to make every moment of every day amazing.

I am absolutely committed to taking care of others and what I have learned in the past few months is how important my ability to take care of other resides in my ability to take better care of myself. I do this by making sure I have food prepped and available when I am hungry (thank you Kathy Kaehler and Sunday Set-up!), by not skipping my workouts and by spending more time with my family and friends. I also see my business and my relationships grow and thrive in ways that do not happen when I am not taking care of myself. Those old adages: we are what we eat; energy begets energy; we call what we put out ring true.  For example, 2 weeks ago we exhibited at the ECA World Fitness Convention.  It was a great success and we met so many wonderful people, including star trainers Gilad Janklowicz; Jennifer Galardi and Susie Q, who all loved the CoreFitnessRoller.

In my own reflections about health, work, family and balance, I offer for you to consider: what choices do you make that take away from your life? What choices do you make that enrich your life? What is your deepest intention and as you make each decision, does this move you closer to or farther from this intention?

With deepest love and gratitude
Spread Health

Warming Up for a Happy and Healthy 2011

Happy New Year!  Every new year can symbolize a new start and many people set their resolutions. Many “resolve” to go to the gym, workout more, lose weight, eat better, etc.  Instead of going full-tilt in January which usually results in a ‘crash and burn’ and a broken resolution, why not ease into it, like a warm-up for a workout and as you get fitter, stronger and more consistent, begin to increase time, intensity and before you know it, your “resolution to be healthier” becomes part of your lifestyle and not some short-ended unsuccessful plan. Instead plan for a healthier you year-round. Slow and steady, step by daily step, is typically the best way to start a new habit or life pattern.  You wouldn’t jump into a marathon without training for it, nor would you do a full sprint across a field without warming up…unless of course, you want to get injured or thwart your fitness or training plan.  A great way to start your “new year-round plan is with a great warm-up. A great warm-up gets you ready for a great workout.

Many of you have asked me over email or even posted on our Facebook page, “What is a Great Warm-up?”  How long should I warm-up?  Below are some tips and techniques I like to use for my own workouts and which I share with my own clients:

A warm-up is an important way for the body and the muscles to get ready for a workout. Most injuries occur at attachment sites of muscles and the warm-up is a critical way to help reduce these types of injuries. A proper warm-up gets the blood flowing through muscles and oxygenates the body as well, which in turn prepares the muscles for effective movement.

One good way to warm up is by using a foam roller, such as the CoreFitnessRoller.  A foam roller delivers self-myofascial release which helps increase blood flow within the muscle; ease and smooth the fascia and reduce areas of contraction thus getting muscles limber, long and ready for powerful movement.

So what is self-myofascial release (SMR)? SMR is a form of self-massage which is helpful for increased range of motion and relaxation of muscles.  When performed prior to a workout in place of static stretching, it helps create and maintain healthy muscle tone and also reduces the risk of potential injury or muscles tears caused by muscle contraction or tight muscles.

The SMR benefits of fascial and muscle release are wonderful before and after a great workout. In fact I believe whole heartedly that rolling before a workout is one of the critical steps to having a great workout. These elements combined also encourage the mind and body communication exchange, bring us more fully into a conscious presence in our bodies and create the mind-body connection; the first step towards a fantastic workout. All of this can be completed with simple moves within a 5-15 minute time span depending on your workout plan in each and every day.

I wish everyone a happy and healthy warm-up and the encouragement to gift yourself with permission for a wonderful New Year of year-round health!

Spread Health,


December Already? Time to Focus on Reflection, Gratitude and Time for You

It’s hard to believe it’s December already as this year has been packed with long days and nights of hard work to launch the CoreFitnessRoller. But work aside; I couldn’t have done any of this without the help of my family and friends.  As the holidays approach us and we begin to slow our pace down a little bit (but not quite yet!), I encourage you to reflect on what you are truly grateful for and find a minute each day to name something of value that you acknowledge.  Be it a hug from your spouse or child, a refreshing workout or a phone call with a long distance friend, it’s so important to let ourselves acknowledge and be present with the blessings in our lives.

I’ll break the ice and say that I am truly grateful for the opportunity to spread health and to share our CoreFitnessRoller. I value the family and friends around me who have helped this dream come to life and appreciate the adventure we’re on as we share our product and grow this company.  As with most adventures, this has been a roller coaster of great days and “not so great days,” and I’m grateful for the strength, tools and support which have gotten us through the tough days and ultimately have made this past year a wonderful growth experience.  I am in awe of my incredible family and the amazing fitness community around me who have been with me every step of this journey.

Earlier this month, for example, we had a wonderful Demo at Superior Fitness  here in Santa Barbara.  Thank you Dustin for your support and for including us in your successful event.  And prior to that, we had a wonderful experience at Greta B’s FitCamp in Malibu on November 20th and are thankful to have been able to share our product with such lovely people.

A heartfelt thank you to the marquis CoreFitnessRoller endorsers: master trainer and BASI Pilates Founder Rael Isacowitz and fitness guru and celebrity trainer Kathy Kaehler for their enthusiasm and continued interest. We recently shot a new poster with Rael and designed a BASI Pilates workout on the CoreFitnessRoller that will be available to you all by February 2011.  Similarly, we’ll be filming classes with Kathy Kaehler and creating a workout poster that we also look forward to sharing with you early in the New Year.

I look forward to hearing your comments and what you are grateful for. The more positive experience and encouragement we can acknowledge and share; the more wonder, value, joy and health we can share and spread. All of this grows community and leads to increased strength and support in our life adventure and experience, especially during the more difficult moments and events.

With deepest appreciation and regard for each and everyone!

Spread Health,


Pilates Method Alliance Conference: CoreFitnessRoller is Heard Around the World

Two and half years ago I had an idea: it was an idea to create a user-friendly, challenging and fun piece of fitness equipment that would spread wellness, nurture strength and movement, enhance balance and posture and ultimately create healthful habits to keep users active and pain-free.

On November 4th, my “idea” sprouted wings at our 1st major public event, the Pilates Method Alliance Conference. In the confines of a 10 x 10 booth space, we had 4 days of interest, fascination and joy with the CoreFitnessRoller.  I met the most heartfelt and vivacious people from all over the world. People who had heard about us on Facebook and Twitter and were excited to try our product. We met people from Spain, Brazil, Turkey and two trainers from France, Pedro Perez and Nicole Kraemer who even made a special visit to Santa Barbara after the conference to take a CoreFitnessRoller class. A special thank you too to Dee Anne Sloan from Texas for being such a beautiful mover and helping highlight the unique elements of the CoreFitnessRoller to Pilates Style Magazine. It was an amazing weekend and as you can see from all the smiles in the photos, we had an incredible experience!  Here are a few photos from the show:

As for the Conference itself, this event was very well produced and the people both attending and exhibiting were fascinating. For example, I met Paula Wilbert who invented Wrist Assured Gloves (WAGS) – innovative fitness gloves to support hands, relieve wrist pain and provide comfort during yoga and pilates. What a brilliant idea! You can try a pair risk-free at:

As I reflect on the past two and a half years of hard work and development, I am ecstatic about this initial public response to the CoreFitnessRoller. Special thank yous to Rael Isacowitz and BASI Pilates for their support and to the PMA for an incredible first show for us!  We also would not have been able to have so many people demo the roller without the help of our trainers Mandy Wright and Erin Lardi. And none of this could be realized without the support and tireless work from the Annovium Team: Kathleen, Scott, Julie, and to my dad too, for taking so many great photographs.

We have some upcoming demos and appearances: This coming weekend, November 20th we will be at Greta B’s Fit Camp in Malibu, CA and a demo session at Superior Fitness here in Santa Barbara, CA on Dec 4th.  I’ll keep you posted on others as well, but until then, have a safe and healthy Thanksgiving holiday, and please, continue to keep the feedback and comments coming to!

Spread Health,

CoreFitnessRoller: From New York to Los Angeles

We just returned from NYC where we spent a few days in exciting and productive meetings with the media, but the highlight of the trip was an energetic CoreFitnessRoller Demo at the beautiful Sports Club/LA at Rockerfeller Plaza.  This was our first Demo outside of Santa Barbara and we were thrilled with the response and enthusiasm.  One attendee liked the portability and all the exercise options and another spent over an hour on the CFR enthralled with how challenging the balance aspects and the kinds of fluid movements she could do on it!

Thank you for everyone who helped make that event happen, in particular, to Nick Stevens and the gang at the Sports Club LA.  I also want to thank Melissa Ullom of, Lynda Salerno Gehrman of, BASI Pilates and IDEA Fitness for their support and promotion.  In addition, Jason Gardner took some terrific photos (I’ve posted a few of these) and the folks from HINT Water graciously donated their refreshing sugar-free water, accented with a ‘HINT’ of flavor.  If you haven’t tried one of these, I suggest you do.  Yogavive was also on site and donated their delicious and crunchy apple chips, made from only 100% USDA NOP certified organic Fuji apples.

Overall, it was a great afternoon of fun, exercise, good nutrition and meeting new friends.  A final big thank you to the CoreFitnessRoller and Annovium team, including Kathleen Brennan, Ashley Greco and Anne Rosen for their support at our first NYC event.

So where do we go from here?  The CoreFitnessRoller team rolls into Long Beach this Thursday for the 10th Anniversary Pilates Method Alliance Conference.  We’ll be there from Nov. 4 -7 so please stop by booth #9 to meet us and demo the CoreFitnessRoller.  Rael Isacowitz, founder of BASI Pilates and trainer to many Olympic athletes, will be doing a CoreFitnessRoller Demo on Saturday, Nov. 6th from 6:30-7pm.  We’ll look forward to seeing you there!

To view more photos from the NYC Demo, please click here.

As always, I appreciate hearing all your feedback or answering any questions so feel free to drop me a line at or comment on this post.

Best in Health,

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