Sung-won was born and raised in Seoul, South Korea until she was 13 years old, at which time she moved to the U.S. when her father was transferred to Midland, Michigan.
Upon her arrival to the States, Sung-won enrolled in public high school and attended 9th and 10th grades there. She completed her high school education in Michigan at the prestigious Interlochen Arts Academy Boarding School studying music and clarinet. When her father was transferred back to South Korea, Sungwon stayed in the U.S. and continued her arts education earning her Bachelor and Master degrees from Eastman School of Music in Rochester, NY. After graduating, Sung-won pursued her professional music career performing and touring throughout Europe. While maintaining her performance schedule, she received her PhD in Music Arts at Rutgers University. Sung-won has performed with the Princeton Symphony and NJ Symphony. She now teaches at Rutgers in addition to teaching master classes all over the world.
In Her Own Words:
Sung-won’s Pilates Journey
After starting my doctorate program at Rutgers, I started getting a lot of low back pain. The Music Department happens to be next to the Dance Department. Some people suggested yoga, stretching, and chiropractic work. I wasn't fond of any of those solutions. My boyfriend, now husband, knew of some people doing Pilates to alleviate back pain, and heard that professional athletes also do Pilates. We researched it and was so happy to find a Pilates studio so close to home.
I was never an athlete, nor did I participate in any sports during my school years, so I was pleasantly surprised at how Pilates made me feel. After taking a Pilates class, with the equipment, I enjoyed the workout and actually felt a sense of relaxation when class was over.
My favorite exercise and least favorite exercise are the same: Any type of leg work – legs in straps, lunges, etc. While doing the exercise, it is challenging and uncomfortable, but at the same time brings my awareness to those muscles and I feel it working!
The environment at Pilates and Company is a collaboration of like-minded people, everyone from the support staff, instructors and, most of all, the other participants. As a non-athletic person, I am comfortable with the non-competitive, non-judgmental approach. Due to people’s schedules these days, you will often find multi-level participants. The instructors are excellent addressing everyone’s needs.