The core of North Tahoe’s Pilates Scene

March 19, 2012

Pilates News, Testimonials


Photo by Jenny Goldsmith

The soothing melody of Norah Jones plays quietly from the speakers; rows of Pilates Reformer machines line the narrow room; a cheerful voice approaches the entrance, welcoming her patrons to their hour-long exercise and relaxation class.

Over the past decade, the Pilates exercise method has exploded in fitness centers from Hollywood to Holland as a means to achieving balance, lean muscle tone, strength, flexibility, and reduced stress levels. And there’s a reason: it works.

Just ask Debra Fishman, owner of The Perfect Workout Pilates Studio in the Raley’s Shopping Center. For Fishman, the Pilates method is more than just an exercise; it’s a way of life.

“This is my passion and I love teaching people about Pilates because it’s so effective and accessible to any person at any age,” said Fishman — a petite woman with a warmhearted smile. “For me, it’s more than just exercise — I love my clients and I believe that Pilates creates an environment of camaraderie.”

Fishman began her Pilates career 20 years ago in Incline’s Village Center where she and her husband, Stu — a lifelong fitness guru, certified personal trainer, and right-hand-man to Debra — opened a gym and Pilates studio.

After 16 years owning and operating a successful personal training and fitness center, the husband and wife team decided to focus their sole efforts on Pilates instruction, so they donated their gym equipment to the high school and moved their practice to the Raley’s Shopping Center where they began to reinvent the family-owned business.

Created by Joseph Pilates in the early 1900s, the Pilates workout is designed to train multiple muscle groups at once through continuous, flowing movements while focusing on breathing, balance and mental clarity.

While Pilates was an integral part of the original business model, the Fishmans were determined to take their endeavor to the next level by acquiring all the necessary equipment to offer the complete experience.

Perfect Workout now boasts every type of Pilates equipment a beginner or expert could fathom, including six professional reformers with towers, jump boards and boxes, a variety of Bosu and Bender balls, new TRX bands and Pilates-specific EXO chairs.

And the equipment just keeps growing in size and number with the recent addition of a bioDensity machine — a cutting-edge, non-pharmaceutical approach to achieving healthy bone density and muscular strength.

“This system allows people of all ages and levels of health access to increased strength, improved organ function and greater bone density,” Fishman said. “And what is so exciting is that the fitness industry is now endorsing bioDensity.”

After conducting extensive research on the performance and success of bioDensity, the National Academy of Sports Medicine is now advocating for this contemporary, advanced technology system due to its ability to increase the metabolism, organ function, and bone and joint health.

Fishman’s state-of-the-art machine is the only one available in the Tahoe Basin and serves as a form of resistance training tailored to the individual through computer analysis and real-time data. Four different load pressures work four different muscle groups — the chest, legs, arms and core — and are performed in five to ten second intervals for maximum intensity.

“As an engineer, I tend to be skeptical about how things work and why, but I can’t find anything that disputes this technology,” said Greg Cecchi, an Incline Village resident and new proponent of bioDensity.

Cecchi said he first heard about this new scientific approach to exercise through friends who had utilized the equipment and seen positive results, and immediately joined Fishman’s client list when she acquired the equipment at the start of the New Year.

“When people work out with heavy weights, there’s always the chance of injury; where as, here you can totally max yourself out at 110 percent of your strength limit with no chance of hurting yourself,” Cecchi said. “Wherever you’re at with exercise, this is a great addition to what you’re doing and you’ll see the progression — the results are substantial.”

While the Fishmans will continue to focus operations on Pilates, Debra said she is grateful for this newfound technology on a personal level. After battling and conquering ovarian cancer, Fishman saw a major decrease in her bone density as a result of the disease. One year after completing chemotherapy treatments, she was diagnosed as pre-osteoporosis.

“I’ve always worked out and I’ve always been in the health industry, so to hear I was pre-osteoporosis was terrifying,” Fishman said.

Next fall, Fishman will retake a bone density test where she hopes her results will prove that bioDensity exercises combined with Pilates is effective in generating bone strength and mass.

As a cancer survivor, philanthropic business woman, energetic personality and humble overachiever, it’s no wonder Fishman has been featured in national publications like Pilates Style Magazine and Balanced Body Marketing Magazine, as well as internationally recognized through Fitness Management Magazine based in England.

“From day one when we opened the business, we’ve never looked back,” Fishman said. “We have been in this community for 23 years now and we consider ourselves quite blessed.”

Read the original Article Here-
By Jenny Goldsmith
North Lake Tahoe Bonanza

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