"Gyro? I don't....Gyro what?"
So many times, when meeting someone new, the first thing I'm asked is "What do you do?". For years, the answer was simple: "I'm a dancer." From there, the conversation could move into a range of directions, because everyone has some reference for dance or the dance profession. These days, the answer is a little less simple, generally involves a bit of confusion, and questions such as "Is it like Yoga?" or "Oh, isn't that only for dancers?".
I sometimes take for granted that I've been a part of the movement community for as long as I can remember. As such, I've been fortunate to be exposed to a wide range of modalities to care for myself and my body. GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS® seemed a natural progression for me when I started to move away from dancing full time, but I wasn't quite prepared for the fact that "Gyro" doesn't exactly have brand recognition like "Pilates" or "Bikram". So over the years, I've come up with an answer to my most commonly asked question:
"Oh, like Pilates?"
Although there are principles that straddle both techniques, there are a lot of unique factors in each. I like to think of it this way- If Pilates were running, Gyro would be swimming. Pilates is quite structured, uses linear movements, and strengthens muscles. GYROTONIC® and GYROKINESIS® focus on fluid motion, use circular movements, and strengthen your movement. Although I personally only teach the latter, there are many instructors who teach both. There are distinct differences, but I feel there is a place for both in the larger Mind Body community. You have to find what fits you best.
GYROTONIC® Headquarters put together a beautiful video explaining what I have had such difficulty finding the words for: What the hell this Gyro thing is and why I love it so much: