Monday, June 27, 2011


Get fit in Istanbul

Traveling is about seeing new sites, meeting people from different cultures and trying new experiences. Your new experiences may include eating snails and intestines for the first time. However, there are also things you can do while traveling that benefit your body and soul (not to imply that snails and intestines may not be the best for your body)

Istanbul is the ideal place to try new fitness activities. Below is an Istanbul guide to the Pilates, gyrotonics and yoga.

Pilates has been around for quite a while in Turkey. The first Pilates studio was opened by Judy Ataman in 1999 at Planet Health Club in Kuruçeşme. Now, there are almost as many Pilates studios as there are simit vendors! Pilates has become increasingly popular and it is a great way to tone your body and fix postural problems. Pilates is ideal for people who want to learn how their body works. A good Pilates teacher will teach their client all about anatomically correct movement and will explain any kind of postural problems the client may have and not be aware of.

Gyrotonics is another “new” fitness fad although it started almost 25 years ago. It is new in Turkey and was introduced it to Istanbulites 8 years ago. It is slowly catching on, and will be all the rage soon. It is a series of 3 dimensional movements with the goal of liberating the spine and thereby creating a more functional and responsive body. Gyrotonic is for the kind of person who likes to move organically and who learns through doing rather than “being taught”. It is also great for anyone with scoliosis or those of you who have suffered from a slipped disc in the past.

Yoga isn’t new and yet there are so many different kinds of yoga being taught that it seems like there is always something new and different to try. Ashtanga Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Bikram Yoga and Anusara Yoga are just some alternatives. If you are a person who likes to focus on the spiritual side of things, Yoga is the way to go. Just like with Pilates, there are almost as many yoga studios as there are types of Yoga. Try them all and see which one suits you the best.

Increase what you think of as Istanbul tourism, and expand your horizon with one (or all) of these fitness options on your next vacation.

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