January was born and raised in Little Rock, Arkansas. She currently lives in Elizabeth, Colorado and is married with 4 grown children and 4 grandchildren. Jan spent many of her younger years in the gym and competed as a high-level gymnast. She attended Oklahoma University, but her college athletic career was cut short when she sustained several injuries. She received her associate's degree and cosmetology license from Carteret Community College in Morehead City North Carolina in 1989. She worked as a cosmetologist for about 10 years.
Jan started her professional fitness career in 1992 when she fell in love with aerobics and started teaching. She had a successful journey as a bodybuilder and as a personal trainer. She was the aerobics coordinator for a private health club for 6 years in Fayetteville, Arkansas before moving to Denver in 1997 and worked as an Aerobics director/instructor for 24hr Fitness and began her study of Pilates. Jan moved to Denver in 1997 and worked as an Aerobics director and also began her study of Pilates.
Jan opened her own Pilates studio in 2001 and created her own specialized Pilates certification, The Bess Method. Jan couldn’t get competition out of her system and became a cheerleader at age 39! In fact, she met her husband while cheering. She worked with local high school students to prepare them for cheer tryouts and even had her own Allstar cheer team for a few years. This helped lead her back to her gymnastics roots. Jan then spent 13 years coaching both high school and club gymnastics teams. She currently places all her focus on teaching Pilates at her studio. Many of her instructors were once her gymnasts and this makes her very proud.
Jan finds purpose in helping others become stronger and healthier, and watching their pain diminish. She believes that movement heals and nourishes our body, mind and soul. Her passion for Pilates is reinforced day in and day out as she witnesses the transformative powers of the Bess Method. Jan has worked with people from all walks of life, including dancers, athletes, people with back, shoulder, hip, neck, knee & foot issues, the elderly, and people with neurological issues. Jan’s ultimate goal is to help people feel successful. When opening her studio, she was determined to make Pilates affordable, so more people could participate and experience the benefits. The Studio of Unique Fitness has become a thriving and successful Pilates business. Jan has a special “touch,” almost a healing superpower, when she works one on one with clients. Jan is passionate about educating others about the anatomy of the body and how it's supposed to work. Nothing is better than helping people become more self-empowered!