From Our Editors
Some seek Pilates for weight loss or a toned body, and others for stress relief and overall wellbeing. But Erica Lukes was drawn to the mat to recover from a horseback-riding injury in the early '90s. As her pain subsided and her range of motion returned through her practice, she became compelled to help others reap the benefits of the core-strengthening workout, earning her certification as a Master Pilates instructor, and eventually helming Total Body Pilates. Now, she guides students of all fitness levels through Pilates and Total Body Barre to achieve their fitness and wellness goals. She helps them to build long, lean muscles through mat- and machine-based Pilates, in which students work on a special machine consisting of ropes and pulleys designed to add extra resistance to each movement, resulting in the lithe limbs and toned muscles of a gym cat, the natural predator of the ubiquitous gym rat.