by Rita Offer, PhD, LMT
Note: After seeing some shockingly good results—actual realignment of the body—in a client who had begun to do Gyrotonics, I asked Rita to write about her experience with Gyrotonics and Gyrokinesis. Sandy Levy, MS, LMT
I have been doing Gyrotonics and Gyrokinesis for five-and-a-half years now, and would hate to be without it. At first I had no intention of taking it up. After all, I was already doing Pilates with a fabulous instructor. But then he bought a Gyrotonic machine for his Pilates studio and invited his Gyrotonics teacher to teach there. I soon noticed the wonderful results she was getting with her students. For instance, I saw people standing straight who had never done so before. I massaged a client right after her first Gyrotonic session with this teacher and was just amazed. She had changed my client’s body in just one session! That was it: I decided I had to do Gyrotonics myself. Gyrotonics makes me feel stronger, more coordinated, and gives me energy. It has helped my back and vision tremendously.
As the names suggest, Gyrotonics and Gyrokinesis are related exercise systems based on rotation. They were developed by Juliu Horvath, a Romanian-born Hungarian and former ballet dancer who found asylum in America, where he danced in New York and as a principal dancer with the Houston ballet. When he was seriously injured, he began to develop these methods to heal himself and then taught them to others, now amounting to 13,000 trainers world-wide.
Gyrotonics is done with machines, Gyrokinesis without—on a mat, or seated on a stool or chair, or standing. A very full and clear description is given on the official website, www.gyrotonic.com. Most of the people on YouTube videos of these methods look like accomplished dancers, but please don’t think you have to be that graceful and flexible to do the movements. The question is not how well you can do the exercise but how much good it can do for you.
Until recently I had not been familiar with Gyrokinesis. Occasionally my teacher would give me a stretch to do at home, but that’s all. Then I noticed someone I’ve known for years suddenly looking very different, quite radiant with good health. It turns out she had started doing Gyrokinesis using a dvd. My Gyrotonics teacher was surprised that such great results are possible without doing any Gyrotonics first. I borrowed a dvd and found I felt very good after doing the exercises, so now I have my own dvd to use when my teacher is away.
Anyone interested in trying Gyro can get basic information, or order Gyrokinesis dvds, from the Gyrotonics website. My teacher, Hsiao-Fang Lee, has her own website, and at Quantum Pilates, where I go, there is also Erin Evans, a very gifted teacher who has been practicing for a long time. Whether tonic or kinesis, Gyro may be just what you need to boost your well-being or banish your aches and pains.