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Pilates Fusion Cheryl Chidrawi


Pilates (classical mat) is aimed at enhancing physical strength, posture and flexibility. On the other hand, Yoga focuses on attaining a harmonious state of body and mind through a combination of exercises, breathing and meditation. Both practices incorporate breathing techniques to enhance effectiveness.

In fusion sessions we combine the two to create a new approach. By combining the essential elements of Pilates and Yoga, a “Pilates Fusion” session provides a holistic experience that enhances breathing, posture, physical strength, flexibility, relaxation and meditation. 

Cheryl’s goal is to encourage self-awareness of posture, body alignment and core strength, which enables joint mobility throughout all movements. By combining Pilates’ emphasis on breathing with Yoga’s (Hatha) mindfulness, relaxation and meditation, Pilates Fusion aims to provide a comprehensive approach that incorporates the best of both practices.


Breathing plays a critical role in Pilates. Most movements are taught with a specific breathing pattern that involves inhaling through the nose to prepare for the movement and directing the breath into the sides of the ribs to expand the rib cage laterally. Exhaling through the mouth is used during movements that involve flexion and exertion. This is one of the core principles of Joseph Pilates’ approach to exercise.


Both Pilates and Yoga use breathing techniques as essential tools to improve their practices. While Yoga also emphasizes the importance of breathing, it typically uses a full belly breathing method in which the breath is taken in and out through the nose. This method helps oxygenate the blood, lower blood pressure and promote relaxation. In contrast, Pilates uses a three-dimensional breathing pattern (deep core breathing) that involves the lateral expansion of the rib cage activating the use of the diaphragm.



Pilates Fusion Cheryl Chidrawi

Cheryl Chidrawi is a fitness expert and entrepreneur with a lifelong passion for physical activity and wellness. Born in South Africa, Cheryl began her athletic career as a cross-country runner, representing Southern Transvaal in the 1960s and 1970s. She excelled in dance, including ballet, tap, modern and Spanish, performing in numerous productions at the Johannesburg Arts Theatre.

Cheryl was an early pioneer in the fitness and beauty industry, opening one of the first fitness and beauty salons in Johannesburg, South Africa. She also led workshops in schools promoting health and fitness to young people. As a professional fundraiser, Cheryl organized many events, including health and fitness workshops, fashion shows, fun runs and golf days to raise funds for various charities.

Later, Cheryl became the Public Relations Officer for Cotlands Baby Sanctuary. It was in this position that she had the honor to meet the late President Nelson Mandela, who endorsed her fundraising event to support a blind runner in a 100-mile run to raise funds for babies with AIDS. Cheryl’s accomplishments were recognized when she was listed as one of the top 100 Businesswomen in Femina Magazine, Johannesburg.

In 2009, Cheryl relocated to North Devon England and continued her active lifestyle by taking part in dancing and social running. She qualified as a Pilates Instructor with Future Fit, Hatha Yoga Instructor with BSY, and Core Barre Instructor with Claire’s Pilates.  Cheryl believes the key to a healthy life is to bring your body, mind and breath together, regardless of age or gender. This is the philosophy behind Pilates Fusion focusing on each movement making it free from tension or strain, and coordinating breath with movement while aligning the body.

As Debbie Hampton said, “Take care of your mind, your body will thank you”.   Cheryl’s dedication to promoting wellness and fitness is an inspiration to all who seek to live a healthy, active life.   

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