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By Dawn Wolfe Gutterman
BIRMINGHAM – The overeating season – make that the holiday season – is over, and now it’s time to face those resolutions you made about slimming back down in the New Year. If you’re looking for an exercise program that will help you feel as well as look better, Pilates may be for you. In Birmingham, that means a visit to Townsend Street Pilates.
Owner Robert Porter, an auto industry retiree, opened the business with his niece, Pilates instructor Lisa Mills, in August 2004.
“I was looking for a business to go into around the fitness world, and as I looked into things I decided Pilates was a good, safe exercise for just about everybody,” Porter said.
Together, the two have attracted a 13-member teaching staff with a combined 100-150 years of experience in personal training, according to Porter.
According to the studio’s website, “Pilates focuses on the ‘powerhouse’ or core strengthening of the abdominals, back muscles, thighs, and buttocks. By promoting musculo-skeletal balance, proper breathing, and spinal alignment, Pilates is a dynamic, full body, and functional exercise method that builds your strength and agility in a balanced way.”
The method was developed by founder Joseph H. Pilates in the 1920s. According to the Pilates Method Alliance, health benefits of Pilates exercises include increased lung capacity and circulation, improved strength and flexibility, and better posture, balance, and core strength.
Classes offered at Townsend Street Pilates range from basic to advanced Pilates and classes that combine Pilates with dance stretches, aerobics, and Yoga.
“I’d say compared to other studios, we have a wide, diverse program,” said Porter.
Private sessions and sessions with up to three friends are also available. Prices range from $10 for one 45-minute class session to $80 for one session of private training.
Other offerings include Reiki, muscle activation, bridal boot camp, certified teacher training, and corporate employee conditioning programs. Private Pilates parties also available. Reservations are required for all sessions. Townsend Street Pilates is offering 10 percent off of any package of private sessions through Jan. 31.
Townsend Street Pilates is located at 189 Townsend Street, Ste. 100 in Birmingham. Call 248-642-6061 or visithttp://www.tspilates.com.