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Pilates DVD Review: Romana's Pilates Powerhouse Mat Workout

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating


Updated March 01, 2010

romanas pilates

Romana's Pilates Powerhouse Mat Workout DVD


The Bottom Line

Romana Kryzanowska is a Pilates superstar. A Pilates Elder who is widely considered Joseph Pilates closest disciple, Romana has devoted her life to preserving and teaching the work of Joseph Pilates exactly as she learned it from him.

Though it is presented as a Pilates workout DVD, the real gift of this DVD is in the documentary portions where those of us who have not had the opportunity to study with the legendary Romana Kryzanowska get a glimpse of her teaching style and life.

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  • An opportunity to witness Romana Kryzanowska as an instructor
  • Includes a short documentary about Romana and her life
  • Imparts a sense of the vitality of the lineage of Joseph Pilates through Romana


  • The advanced mat workout is unevenly paced
  • The mat workout is not taught by Romana
  • The demonstration lesson Romana gives is not very in-depth


  • Includes a demonstration of Romana teaching an advanced Pilates mat workout
  • Includes a documentary section about Romana
  • Includes a follow along advanced mat workout
  • Includes a short bonus section of standing Pilates moves
  • 30 minutes
  • Prices vary up to $15.00

Guide Review - Pilates DVD Review: Romana's Pilates Powerhouse Mat Workout

I wouldn't get this DVD just for the advanced powerhouse mat workout. It's OK, I was disappointed that the workout was not taught by Romana, and it lacked anything special that might have set it apart as a Romana inspired workout. If you want somebody to talk you through an advanced mat workout occasionally, this will do; though I have to say I think it begs the difference between flow and frantic.

There is a demonstration portion of the DVD where Romana is teaching the mat workout. I liked that, but I wanted a lot more from it. I might have like to see her teaching a less advanced student so we could have gotten more cues out of it. Still, it was great to have that little window into watching Romana teach.

People who have met or studied with Romana report that the documentary aspect of this DVD fell short of communicating the exceptional quality of her being. I don't doubt that at all, but I did enjoy "meeting Romana" through it; and I came away from it with a greater appreciation for what people mean when they talk about her in the glowing terms that most do.

I imagine that I could get something different out of watching the different parts of this video each time I watched it for quite a while. But on the day I did watch it, Romana's very definitive style impressed me the most. She is commanding in a way that imparts a confidence that her students (in this case very advanced ones) can do, to the fullest extent, exactly what she is telling them to -- so step up to the plate and do it! It's an inspiring attitude I think many of us could use a dose of. I felt like it was coming right through the strength of Joseph Pilates lineage.

Between the documentary, the 2 teaching demonstrations, and the workout there is plenty of interesting material on this DVD. It's worth the price of admission for those of us who haven't met Romana just to get a taste of the strength and brilliance of this Pilates legend. I rented Romana's Pilates Powerhouse Mat Workout, but I will be adding a copy to my Pilates DVD collection.

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