Pilates seems to be everywhere, but there are real differences between a Pilates-based workout and the “real deal.” Anthony Rabara brought the technique of Joseph Pilates from New York to Princeton in 1989. As a Master teacher, he has the only studio in the region that prepares teachers — with 18 months of study and exams — to teach the wonderful work of Joseph Pilates in its original form.

With “Strength, Stretch, and Control” as goals, Pilates is an equal-opportunity activity for all ages. Here, there is one discipline to help the high-level athlete (the runner, the skier, the golfer), those with physical issues (a recovering hip replacement, arthritis, or back ailments), as well as those who simply want to strengthen core muscles or maintain balance and flexibility.

“Whether you need help with pain, want a hard workout, or want to learn to move more gracefully, this is the place to go,” says David Fisher, a physicist. “I have trained at Pilates studios in New York City, San Francisco, and across the Midwest. The teachers here have clearly learned from the best.”

Whether in private or semi-private lessons or in mat classes, the experienced teachers bring out the best in the technique and bring out the best in the client. They do not teach “en masse.” With an average of 15 years experience, the 12 certified teachers guide different bodies correctly and safely.

Athletes, from novices to Olympic level, train under Rabara’s supervision. “It is absolutely amazing how my health has changed,” says Dante Arfinengo, a novice triathlete.

Joan B. Needham is an internationally known artist who has been a Rabara client for two decades. “At age 83 I can say that I am as spirited as ever. To maintain my agility, flexibility, and overall strength — so I can climb a 16 -foot ladder to weld my stainless steel sculptures — Anthony and his studio has been indispensable.”

Long-time client Barbara Figge Fox says that — unlike physical therapy or gym workouts — Pilates at the Rabara studio makes her feel like she is taking a dance class, even as she ages. “At 78 I can say ‘my back’s out today,’ or ‘my knee is bad today,’ and the expert teachers devise a workout that keeps me safe.”

Joseph Pilates had passed on his legacy to Romana Kryzanowska, and Anthony Rabara was one of eight people chosen to maintain the integrity of the method. Meanwhile, elsewhere, without intensive study, anyone can pay a small amount to get certified.

See for yourself why Anthony Rabara’s studio is the unquestioned leader in the Pilates Method in this area. It is equipped with every apparatus that Joseph Pilates built to help balance the body — from the five-inch “Toe Corrector” to the 12-foot Guillotine, which stands upright from floor to ceiling. Lessons here cost no more than elsewhere. You will not find another studio like this in New Jersey.

Anthony Rabara Pilates Studio of Princeton, 392 Wall Street, Princeton. 609-921-7990. www.rabarapilates.com.

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