After giving birth to her third child, Jacqueline was determined to lose the extra weight she'd gained during pregnancy. By chance she was introduced to Pilates by a neighbour and, less than a year later, she has lost nine kilograms and seen drastic improvements in her body shape. I caught up with Jacqueline at Pilates in the Park studios to find out more.

"It's a daunting task to lose weight after a baby," says Jacq, "but I was determined to do it while we're here in Singapore where I have home help to look after the kids while I am exercising. I could not have done this if we were back in Australia!"

"I realised I'd need to be pushed and motivated to lose the weight," she says, "and the personal attention you get at Pilates in the Park was just what I needed. They have small classes of four, so the instructor notices as soon as you're doing something wrong and she corrects your posture so that you get the full benefit of the exercise time. She also keeps challenging you to do more, and you really feel it the next day -- so you know you're getting a great workout."

Jacqueline is also motivated by the beautiful park settings. "It's a great escape from the city environment and I really look forward to 'my time' here. It's conveniently close to my home plus there's a fabulous spa and eateries just next door!"

A picture of good health, Jacq's enthusiasm for Pilates is contagious and the secret of her success has clearly been the visible results of her progress. "I can now fit into clothes that I haven't worn in years--I've lost seven centimeters around the abdominal area in just eight months", she explains. "Pilates has changed my perception of exercise -- I'm addicted now!"

After such a positive endorsement, I had to give it a go! The Pilates instructor cum physiotherapist put me through my paces on the Pilates Reformer machine, carefully explaining and demonstrating each movement with a combination of action, contraction of the core muscles and correct breathing. There's a lot to think of at once and you definitely need personal attention to help you get it right. I like the fact that the Pilates personal trainer focuses on quality rather than quantity; each move is carefully controlled to maximise the strengthening and toning effects on the core muscles. "Pilates is all about creating longer, leaner muscles so you get a strong, toned body without the bulk", she explains.

I now understand fully what the rage is all about –- why Hollywood celebrities are passionate and addicted to their Pilates regime -- with a strong following from the likes of Madonna, Julia Roberts, Jennifer Lopez, Sharon Stone, Sandra Bullock, Gwenyth Paltrow, Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Aniston, Uma Thurman, Kate Hudson, Joan Collins, Jamie Lee Curtis, Elizabeth Hurley, Hugh Grant, Reese Witherspoon, and even Pippa Middleton -- because Pilates works and it could well be your only anti-ageing method for this 21st century!

Author's Bio: 

Claudel Kuek, at Bishan Park, Dempsey Hill and Rochester Park; click here to find out if Singapore Pilates is right for YOU!