Performance Pilates
The thinking person's exercise!


Led by Ellena Conland, the Performance Pilates team consists of highly skilled and certified pilates teachers dedicated to giving you the best pilates workout:

Ellena Conland

Ellena Conland

Ellena is a pilates teacher with extensive experience in movement and rehabilitation, together with a dance performance background. She has worked for the past 25 years as a studio owner, teacher and movement educator, in both New Zealand and London.  A pioneer of the pilates scene here in Wellington, in 2002 Ellena opened one of the first commercial studios, Performance Pilates, on Featherston Street. She has Bachelor of Dance form Melbourne University (Victorian College of the Arts) and is currently completing her Master’s in Health Science, Sport and Exercise, through Massey University.

Ellena’s professional associations include having presented and taught for Body Control Pilates (UK) and Polestar Pilates Education (USA) in roles of educator, examiner and mentor, as well as twice hosting Polestar Pilates Education teacher training courses in Wellington. 

She has twice run year long, in-house teacher training courses, under Performance Pilates Teacher Training and The Pilates Studio, (Alison Townsend) and has taught at the New Zealand School of Dance, in Wellington. While in London Ellena was a teacher at well known author Gordon Thomson's Pilates and Rehabilitation Studio.

2020 saw a change in direction, with Ellena combining forces with Alison Townsend, (The Pilates Studio) to form The Pilates Space, a spacious new studio in central Wellington. Together, their years of pilates experience and business acumen is giving the Wellington public the highest standard of pilates available. 

Ellena’s love of teaching pilates includes many areas, such as general fitness, pregnancy and post-natal, rehabilitation, dance and the teaching and she has a passion for mentoring others to be pilates teachers. She continues to regularly attend many conferences and courses, some of which include Neuro-Muscular Rehabilitation, Advanced Spine, Scoliosis, Women’s Health, Exercise and the Pelvic Floor, Pilates for Rotational Sports, Pilates for Dancers and the Buteyko Method breathing. 

 Ellena creates an atmosphere within her classes that is inclusive and fun, where people can have a safe and effective workout, working to their own ability and at their own pace, in order to be strong and flexible. This is a collaborative process, and one of teaching and learning, on both sides.     

 She is Mum to Luke (17), Liam (12) and Holly (11), and somehow manages to balance being a Mum with running a busy pilates studio.  Ellena is lucky to also have a husband who is a videographer, able to provide all the technical support needed!

 Loata Stewart

Starting at the studio in 2003 as a client, Loata quickly realized the benefits of pilates for her own strength and flexibility. Slowing down movement and focusing on how the body moves became essential for her busy life. Loata decided she would like to become a teacher and so she initially trained with Performance Pilates (Ellena Conland and Alison Townsend) and later with Polestar Pilates. Loata has been teaching for 8 years and is an asset to the studio. She enjoys working with clients of all ages and fitness levels, but is particularly interested in how pilates can assist in managing the natural aging process.   

Juliet Shelley

Juliet graduated from London University Goldsmiths College with a BA in Dance Theatre and worked for many years as a contemporary dance choreographer, performer, producer and teacher in NZ and overseas.  She qualified as an Alexander Technique Teacher with the UK Society of Teachers of Alexander Technique in 1994. Juliet has been teaching Pilates mat work since 2003 and certified with Pilates International (Au). She has been teaching Pilates studio classes since 2007. She certified with Performance Pilates & The Pilates Studio in 2012 and is currently studying for her Polestar transition studio certification. Juliet brings an in-depth awareness of precision and alignment to her classes, a love of movement and a wealth of interdisciplinary experience.   

Kirsty Dickson

Kirsty started pilates in 2000, originally as a studio client, before deciding she would like to teach.  She then embarked on the challenge of the Polestar Pilates Studio Training course, completing it in 2008 to become a teacher. Originally having studied at Victoria University and graduating with a Bachelor in Science, she has come to realise the important benefits of a good pilates workout not only for the body but also the mind.  Her classes are well planned and taught in a precise and thoughtful manner, giving each client the time to be challenged and nurtured.

"To achieve the highest accomplishments within the scope of our capabilities in all walks of life we must constantly strive to acquire strong, healthy bodies and develop our minds to the limits of our ability." - Joseph H Pilates

All teachers at Performance Pilates are Polestar Pilates certified.