If you are a sedentary desk potato, such as myself, you most likely have not heard of Pilate's. Just to clarify the pronunciation; replace the "s" with a "z". It's an exercises regimen designed by a German in the early 20th century. Done correctly it uses slow deliberate body movements and controlled breathing to strenghten the bodies core muscles.
Slow exercising? Sounds like something I could do. I like slow. I have a body that could use core muscle tone. Why not? Boy, was I wrong. After one session at my local gym my muscles were reduced to a large quivering mass. Sliding behind the wheel to drive home was a challenge and I prayed I wouldn't have to use my arms for any quick defensive driving movements. Holy cat!
About half the class could keep up with each exercises with meant this stuff really works or they already were fit and just like to show off. Before the class a woman did a headstand while waiting. It must be some sort of stretch, and she could have just been showing off, but it was impressive. The other half was struggling like me so I felt right at home.
When I kissed my husband good night I warned him I might not be the same woman in the morning and I was right. This morning each step reminded me of how out of shape I'd gotten. This is after walking all summer, giving tours at the Getty Center, and two months of water aerobics. I have to hand it to this instructor, she's good. There were no muscles groups untouched by pain.
Will I go back? Sure, if one session can work the muscles that much there must be some benefit and who knows, I may be able to do a headstand next month. Yeah, right.