We recently caught up with Jessie Blum, the visionary founder of Heartcore, one of London’s most renowned (and hugely popular) pilates studio. Jessie shares her deep-rooted relationship with movement, the inspiring story behind the creation of Heartcore, and her approach to maintaining wellbeing amidst the demands of being a busy entrepreneur.

Why do you move?

Mindful movement is my daily meditation. It teaches me discipline, builds my resilience and brings clarity to my mind and body. It helps me to get to know myself better by understanding where I am at that very moment. It’s about reflection, awareness and the opportunity to make choices that allow me to grow more into the person I want to be.

What are some of your earliest recollections of physical activity as a child? 

Horse riding was my first love. As a child, there was no greater pleasure than being around horses and the sense of freedom it brought – it makes you feel totally alive and forces you to be present and aware of your energy as horses pick up on it straight away. To this day it remains one of my favourite ways to escape the world.

Can you remember your first reformer class? What was it that initially drew you to it? 

It was in LA that I first discovered Reformer Pilates. I absolutely loved the way it made me feel and the way my body responded to the combination of lengthening and strengthening moves. It was unlike anything else I’d tried, and I was immediately hooked.

Talk us through the beginnings of Heartcore… how did you come up with the concept and how has it changed since you launched the business in 2007?

Before moving to London, I was living in Los Angeles. It was there that I really discovered my love for fitness and began my entrepreneurial journey to transform the existing Pilates landscape.

When I opened Heartcore in 2007, London was yet to embrace the boutique fitness concept, so I saw an opportunity to disrupt the wellness space and pave a new way to move. I took on a heavily male-dominated industry and set about creating my own method of Pilates with the power of positive movement at its core.

Our first studio in Kensington was a humble, yet magical, space and quickly became known as ‘London’s best kept secret’. Over the last 17 years I’ve worked tirelessly to evolve the Heartcore Method, grow the business and establish the brand. Reformer Pilates and boutique studios may now be found across London, but Heartcore has become cemented as the leader within its field.

With seven – soon to be eight – thriving London studios offering Coreformer and infrared heated mat Pilates, as well as Heartcore’s global online platform, we’re able to bring the joy of our Heartcore Method to an ever-growing community.

What led to you designing the Coreformer and how has it elevated Heartcore’s method?

When I founded Heartcore I was looking for reformers to put in our studio, but I couldn’t find one that did what I wanted it to do, so I created my own! With everything we do at Heartcore, we are always striving to give our community the best possible experience, and our Coreformers – referred to as the “Rolls-Royce of reformers” – really set the brand apart.

However, I am always seeking ways to take the Heartcore experience to new levels, and this year saw the launch of my Coreformer 2.0 – an ultra-luxe evolution of the original Coreformer – that offers an even smoother, quieter ride and enables deeper movements to work your entire body, allowing your mind to be really present and taking you on a journey of discovery from the inside out.

Heartcore is loved by so many people. The teachers, the music, the sense of community… it’s easy to see why people are addicted and keep coming back for more! How did you go about cultivating such an inviting space for people to work out in?

Living in large cities like London, Los Angeles and Hamburg taught me how important it is to find a community where you feel welcome, safe and inspired. This is how we are able to thrive and grow. Because of this, I always knew I wanted to build a community; focusing on one heart at a time, nurturing every relationship, every studio, every teacher and every person that walks through our doors.

Together with my team we have created spaces where individuals can push past their perceived boundaries and grow in the most generous way. I am so proud of how much we all want it to count. As we say at Heartcore, “we move you, so you can move the world”.

You’ve lived in various places across the world, where has been the place that’s inspired you the most and why? 

With nothing but a backpack, I left Germany in my mid-twenties on the search for the meaning of (my) life. I felt rather lost and confused, like there was no place where I fitted in. I randomly settled in Byron Bay on the East Coast of Australia. Back then it was still somewhat untouched, a bohemian paradise, and I felt right at home. It’s there where I connected with my heart and found my ‘why’. I came to realise that my happiness was closely knit with seeing others thrive. That I needed to do something that really mattered to people, something that would contribute to a better world and keep us all inspired and connected.

Running a business can be so time-consuming… how do you prioritise your own fitness and wellbeing in-between?

There was a time when I didn’t prioritise my wellbeing and it made me question the path I’d chosen. I didn’t feel as though I had anything left to give, because I wasn’t giving to myself. I started to feel resentful and a bit depressed. That’s when I realised that unless I gave priority to my daily movement, I wouldn’t be able to show up powerfully for myself or anyone around me.

What are the wellness essentials you can’t be without?

A tense body is usually the sign of a tense mind and vice versa and movement is the main thing I couldn’t live without. Overall to help me feel more energised, focused and keep my body in equilibrium, there are certain supplements I like to take. I have just discovered Qualia’s NAD+, which I’m using to support my cellular structure as I age. NAD+ is an essential enzyme involved in many critical cell functions in the human body, including energy production, DNA repair and immunoregulation. I also take Magnesium daily to support my muscles, bones and nervous system, and help to balance my hormones with the natural Hormone Balance products by Happy Mammoth.

What are your hopes and dreams for Heartcore moving forward? Is there anything in particular you’d love to accomplish that you haven’t had the opportunity to yet? 

My ambition with Heartcore is, and has always been, to help people embrace the power of positive movement with the support of a strong community built on the values of kindness, courage and respect. I’ve loved watching our first small, but mighty, community grow up into the global community it is today, and my hope is that we are able to continue to build upon this and reach more people. To help them thrive, remind them how strong they can be and that life is better when we’re doing it together.