Meet Our Instructors



Carrie started her Pilates training in Seattle with Dorothee Vandewalle, Lori  Coleman-Brown, and Lauren Stephen. She also had the good fortune to study with Romana Kryzanowska who ultimately certified Carrie in 1999. She moved home to Boise, Idaho a year later and opened Idaho’s first Pilates studio, Forte Pilates.

Through the years Carrie has taught dancers and football players and the young and the aged. She has appreciated and learned from using Pilates in her own body to pursue athletic endeavors and for longevity as she ages and enjoys passing on Pilates to clients in various stages of life.

In 2015, Carrie was accepted into and completed The Work at Vintage Pilates in Los Angeles. This opportunity has proven to be the biggest influence in Carrie’s teaching. She has not only continued learning from Jay Grimes and Sandy Shimoda in workshops and classes but has had the honor of guest teaching with them in Vintage Pilates’ Spring Camps. She is enjoying opportunities mentoring current instructors and future instructors in and outside of Boise.

She is very proud of Forte Pilates and feels very lucky to work with an excellent team of instructors.

Desiree Matthews-Gustafson

Desiree has been a certified Romanas Pilates instructor for over 16 years, with a professional dancing background for over 17 years (Performing and Teaching). With her dance career cut short due to an injury, Desiree decided to head back home to Washington to attend college. While studying for her BA, Desiree discovered a love for Pilates and started training from Pilates Seattle International. After graduating from college, she worked for the next 8 years at PSI.  

Desiree had the opportunity to work with many master teachers such as; Lori Coleman-Brown, Dorothee Vandewalle, Larry Gibas, Jerome Weinberg MeJo Wiggin, Sari Mejia Santos , Cythina Lochard and last but not least Romana Kryzanowska. After coming to Boise on a family visit, Desiree decided to move and has been here ever since. Currently she is teaching Dance at Ballet Idaho, instructing at Forte' Pilates, and is a proud mother of 2.

Kim (Young)

Young was introduced to Pilates as a way to heal her chronic lower back pain. After taking several Pilates sessions, she realized the benefits for her back but also to get fit and tone up her body. Experiencing these positive changes in her body led her to becoming a Pilates instructor.

Young earned her comprehensive Power Pilates certification in 2015 under the guidance of Power Pilates master trainer, Allison Gonzales, who worked closely with Romana Kryzanowska and Bob Liekens. Young also completed another certification, 360 Pilates with Benjamin Degenhardt in 2017. She then completed human anatomy workshops at Stanford School of Medicine to deepen her knowledge of Pilates and movement. Young taught at various studios in the Bay area.

Young is a native Korean. She initially came to the United States for her graduate school education. She earned her BA and MA in Political Science in Korea and earned her Master’s degree in Education from Stanford University in 2009. Young is available to teach in English and Korean. She recently relocated to Boise and is extremely excited to start sharing the benefits of Pilates by teaching at Forte' Pilates.


Kim grew up in McCall and loved her time living in the mountains. She left McCall to attend the University of Idaho. She graduated with a dance minor and B.S in Textile Design.

In 2002, Kim started training with Carrie at Forte Pilates. She eventually moved to Seattle to complete her 700 hour apprenticeship at Pilates Seattle International. In 2003, she returned to Boise to teach at Forte Pilates. During her early teaching, she became interested in furthering her knowledge and entered graduate school for physical therapy in 2008.

Kim received her Doctor of Physical Therapy in 2011 from Idaho State University and works now at Thrive Physical Therapy. She loves combining her Pilates knowledge base with movement therapy for patients (and clients). Kim loves running, hiking, camping and teaching. She's happy to be part of the  Forte Pilates team.


Heidi was trained in 2009 by master Pilates teacher Dorothee Vanderwalle, recognized as one of the leading teacher-trainers and Pilates practitioners in the world. Through Seattle’s Metropolitan Authentic Training program, Heidi has focused on the original, authentic method developed by Joseph Pilates. She has over 900 hours of teaching, training, and observing in authentic Pilates instruction.  

Prior to Pilates, Heidi received her masters in teaching from the University of Washington and has worked as a secondary science teacher in Seattle, Boston, Germany, and on the Navajo Reservation.

Physical activity has always been integral to Heidi’s lifestyle. She enjoys biking, running, hiking, dance and skiing. Her previous career in education, combined with her focus on physical activity and body awareness provided a perfect segue into a career in Pilates instruction.  

In Heidi’s private or semiprivate lessons, your workout will be structured around your physical needs in caring and yet challenging format.


Tsarra received her Pilates training from Carrie Shanafelt at Forte Pilates.  She completed her training as a Pilates teacher in 2020.

In 2000, at the original Forte Pilates, Tsarra was first introduced to Pilates. It immediately became clear to Tsarra that Pilates was something she wanted to do for the rest of her life. Though a career in dance had to come first, Pilates proved to be a great supplement to dance as a way of cross training and injury prevention.

Tsarra holds a BFA in ballet and modern dance from The Boston Conservatory.  She also studied at The Juilliard School and Jacob’s Pillow.  After college, Tsarra had a career as a professional dancer in New York City.  Most of her dance career was spent touring and performing with the dance company MOMIX, but she also performed as a freelance artist. Tsarra concluded her time in New York as a fitness instructor at a barre studio in Manhattan, then returned to Boise to raise her two daughters.  Tsarra is thrilled that her move to Boise gave her the opportunity to reconnect with her love of Pilates and to now be a part of the Forte Pilates team.