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Pilates for Dummies
by Ellie Herman
2002

Pilates is an amazing exercise form - even though you don't work up a sweat, you are able to truly transform your body. Instead of creating bulky muscles, as sometimes happens with weight training, Pilates fashions long, lean muscles, along with helping you to develop excellent posture. But when it comes to Pilates, you really need precise form, and the more you know about the exercises in general, the better off you will be. Perhaps you've taken some classes, or have practiced to some DVDs or videos at home. There may be areas of your Pilates workouts that you want to improve. Or it could be that you're not getting the results you expected and are wondering why. You'll undoubtedly find a Pilates reference guide an invaluable tool to supplement your practice, and Pilates for Dummies is just the book for you.

Author Ellie Herman received her training from two of Joseph Pilates' original students, and she runs a pair of studios in the Bay Area. She's also a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist, so a holistic feel for the human body comes naturally to her. Herman takes the reader step by step through the world of Pilates, from Powerhouse fundamentals to the Boomerang, one of the most advanced Pilates exercises. She even includes chapters about Pilates with an exercise ball, target toning and special situations such as pregnancy. Everything is explained in an easy to comprehend manner so that Pilates beginners will be able to access the information without getting a headache. Those with more Pilates experience will also appreciate a lot of the information here - Herman covers all level of exercises so the book grows with you.

One note: as with any form of exercise, you won't learn Pilates just from a book. Pilates for Dummies is best used to enhance your regular Pilates practice, not as a stand-alone teaching tool. It will help you with your form, it will give you direction on intermediate and advanced exercises, and it will answer many questions that may spring up as a result of your practice. But it can't show you Pilates in action and it can't observe your form. If you're looking for a comprehensive, how-to guide to Pilates, you won't find it here - or anywhere. But if you're looking for a book that will help you get the most out of Pilates, whether your routine is new or established, you've come to the right place.

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