About Cool Pilates

Meet the Teachers

Our studios are centres of excellence, staffed by highly trained teachers, all of whom have trained in a traditional apprenticeship environment and have extensive teaching experience.
Andy Adamson

Andy Adamson

Andy Adamson is a former freelance choreographer and dance researcher and now Director of two highly successful Pilates Studios in Birmingham, Cool Pilates JQ based in the city centre Jewellery Quarter and Cool Pilates BG set in the leafy suburb of Barnt Green.

He has been External Examiner to the University of East London BSc in Complementary Medicine (Pilates) and Internal Verifier for Pilates Studies at Elmhurst School of Dance. He was formerly Director of Dance at the University of Birmingham where, for over 20 years, he created original works of dance and theatre with student and young professional dancers.

After retiring from the University he became Artistic Director of Red Pepper Dance Company and founded Cool Pilates Studio. He has worked with many systems of mind-body training including Alexander Technique, Tai Chi and Bartenieff Fundamentals. His interest in Pilates work developed in the 1980s as an integral part of his training in American Modern Dance. However, his first serious foray into Pilates work came after a knee operation when he decided to train in Pilates Matwork with Juliet Wynne (1994).

In 2002 Andy undertook the Foundation Training Programme for Teachers of Pilates (fulltime, one year), at the Oxford School of Pilates (with Jane Paterson) and with one of the world’s foremost experts in Pilates Alan Herdman at his studio in London. Andy has continued his professional development working with Tony Kosoto studying Rehabilitation in the Pilates Environment, the Pilates Matrix (diagnostic tools for Pilates teachers) and Classical Pilates with Jay Grimes, Mejo Wiggin, Alisa Wyatt, Peter Fiasca, Kathi Ross-Nash, Michael Miller and Clare Dunphy-Hermani. His Corealign training was with Portia Page and Veronique Coignac. In 2015 Andy completed a mentorship with Mejo Wiggin in The Classical Syllabus. Andy is well known for his skills in rehabilation and has built up excellent working relationships with many healthcare professionals in the West Midlands.

When he’s not teaching Pilates Andy uses the Studio to practise his other passions, dancing Argentine Tango or rehearsing with his trad jazz ensemble Syncopated Rhythm (trumpet, trombone).

Rachel Parker

Prior to qualifying as a Pilates Instructor, Rachel enjoyed a rewarding 18-year career dancing with the Atlanta Ballet in the USA (1987-1992) and later as a Principal Dancer with the Birmingham Royal Ballet (1992-2005).

Throughout her career Rachel incorporated Pilates into her daily routine under the guidance of Jennifer Bintley.  It was while training in Birmingham Royal Ballet’s renowned Jerwood Centre, developed by leading Sports and Dance Consultant Physiotherapist, Sharon Morrison, that Rachel became inspired to pursue a career as a Pilates instructor.

Following her retirement from dance in 2005, Rachel moved to London to re-train with leading expert Alan Herdman. After qualifying as an instructor, she taught Pilates for a year in the United States.  In 2008 she returned to the UK and has been teaching at Cool Pilates in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter ever since.  Rachel continues to develop her skills as a Pilates instructor by attending various conferences and lectures, including Mariska Breland’s “Pilates for MS and other Neurological Conditions”.  This has led her to become passionate about working with clients who suffer from the effects of Stroke, live with Parkinson’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis (she is a volunteer at the MS Society in Birmingham) and Muscular Dystrophy.  She is also indebted to Andy Adamson for the knowledge gained from working with him and his team at Cool Pilates.

In addition to teaching Pilates for improved conditioning, strength and overall wellness to her regular client base, Rachel specialises in the rehabilitation and strengthening of professional ballet dancers and pre-professional ballet students.  Starting in 2015, she helped prepare a British/European Sprint Champion for his participation in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and continues to help him and a team of ten other elite sprinters with fine tuning and conditioning.

Rachel has an MA from the University of Birmingham based on research into Osteoporosis and other health related issues in female ballet dancers and athletes.  She has also been a key speaker at the Dance UK Royal Society of Medicine conference and Birmingham University’s Symposium on the Psychology of Dance, where she shared her knowledge and experience on the Female Athlete Triad and Osteoporosis.

Rachel Parker
Darren Yeoman

Darren Yeomans

Darren began his Pilates journey in 2013 whilst training to be a Personal Trainer.  The teacher suggested that he try Pilates so he started taking a mat class at a local studio. This inspired him to enrol in a Pilates mat course with Body Control Pilates and after numerous hours of practise and supervised teaching became a qualified teacher.  He then embarked on a year-long apprenticeship with Andy Adamson at Cool Pilates, where he first discovered the Classical Pilates method, learning Pilates as a system of exercises using all the studio apparatus, not just mat work.  After this he completed a comprehensive training program with world renowned Pilates teacher Kirk Smith at the Classical Pilates Centre in Bollington, deepening his knowledge of the Pilates system.

Classical Pilates has completely changed his body, improved his posture and successfully rehabilitated a shoulder injury.  He sees massive changes in his clients from following the method and sees them getting stronger, more flexible and taller!
He has experience of working with a range of different clients from athletes, dancers, people with back pain and more recently he is teaching a number of clients with Ehlers-Danlos syndromes.

He will always be a student of Pilates, attending courses to update his practice, studying with different teachers and learning the most from his clients.

Alicia Nelson

Alicia has been a professional ballet dancer for ten years. She trained at Elmhurst School for Dance and later went on to dance in Estonia with the ballet company in Teater Vanemuine, Ballet Ireland, Cork City Ballet, English National Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet where most recently she has performed in David Bintley’s production of Cinderella.

Pilates has been a part of her daily routine throughout her ballet career and for many years she studied with Rachel and Andy at Cool Pilates.

Her passion for Pilates led her to certify as a Stott Pilates instructor.

Sarah Pritchard

Sarah is a Comprehensive and remedial Pilates teacher as well as a Registered Somatic Movement Educator and Therapist (RSME / RSMT) with ISMETA (mind body specialist for movement).  Sarah’s principal somatic practice is Franklin Method® and she is one of just a few Advanced Educators in the English speaking world.  Sarah is also a OneDance UK Healthcare Practitioner for Pilates, Somatic Movement and Franklin Method®.

Sarah discovered Pilates as a dancer and teacher of Classical ballet, finding it to be an invaluable tool for performance as well as recovery.  Following injury and resulting surgeries, Pilates took centre stage. As a client at Alan Herdman’s Pilates studio Sarah rediscovered her ability walking and eventually to dance: the Pilates studio became her haven for peace, restoration of her body, and beautiful movement.  So, she became Alan’s apprentice, with a desire to help others become their own optimal selves.

After graduating Sarah worked within Alan Herdman affiliated Pilates Studios in Central London, teaching clients of every age, skills level and ability. She continues to teach in her own private practice and as a guest teacher internationally. She has completed advanced studies with Carolyn Anthony (Pre and Post Natal Pilates Specialist), Dr. Suzanne Martin (Foot Management and Performing Arts Enhancement) and Rebekah Rotstein (bone and joint health focusing on Osteoporosis). She is Rebekah’s teaching assistant for the UK training of new teachers for Rebekah’s specialist programme Buff Bones®. Committed to deepening her understanding of Pilates she continues to study with UK Pilates pioneer Michael King.

Within the somatic field Sarah has been studying with Eric Franklin for over a decade and  continues to explore the depths and nuance of the living body with him and other key figures in this field.  She has studied integral anatomy with anatomist Gil Hedley, and is a trauma informed practitioner which helps her understand and have great sensitivity to the individual as well as movement at a very deep level.  She integrates Somatics, specifically Franklin Method®, within Pilates to help her clients develop their own embodiment of Pilates, feel and understand their body in movement, and feel better in mind and body.  Sarah’s approach is holistic, positive and calm, listening deeply to her clients and their bodies in movement.

When not teaching Sarah is to be found continuing her own journey in movement, be that dancing or in creative somatic practice.  When not moving she loves working with rescue birds, who can be both an absolute joy and challenge.

Sherry Tay

Sherry Tay

Sherry is currently the Dance Captain and Being of The Lion King UK & Ireland Tour. She covered the Resident Supervisor role for this production from July 2022- March 2023.

Sherry danced with the T.H.E. Dance Company (Singapore) and freelanced with other companies including Raw Moves, John Mead Company, Dance Nucleus, ECNAD, Maya Dance Theatre and Connecticut Ballet (USA). She was Dance Captain in The Lion King, Netherlands (2016-2019) and Swing in the London production (2021).

Sherry is also a choreographer, ballet and contemporary dance teacher, and certified Stott Pilates instructor.

Call 0121 445 1939 if you have a question or want to book a class