Gyrotonic: It's not torture, it's good for you

Mon Apr 6, 2009 6:01am EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Dorene Internicola

NEW YORK (Reuters Life!) - They may look like upscale torture chambers in polished wood, but the Gyrotonic studios springing up in cities around the world aim to ease your pain, not to cause it.

Ironically, relief, fitness and alignment comes via a daunting arrangement of pulleys, levers and cranks.

"It looks like an erector set," Dr. Mark Klion, a sports medicine specialist at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, said of the combination pulley tower unit, the basic machine of Gyrotonic.

"Most people would say, 'Well, what do I do with this?'" he said in an interview.

Nevertheless, movie stars, athletes, dancers and just plain folk have been flocking to these contraptions and the dimly-lit dungeon-sized studios that house them.

Derived from the words "gyro" (spiral) and "tonic" (tone), Gyrotonic promises to enhance range of motion, balance and coordination, to stretch and strengthen muscles and tendons, and to articulate and mobilize joints.

"The machines are built around the body and allow the body to move with no end point," Matt Aversa, vice president of Gyrotonic International, explained.

"Nothing's forced. It's like you're swimming," he said from the company's headquarters in Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania.   Continued...