Monday, December 19, 2011

A Life Well-Lived: Bonnie Prudden

Bonnie Prudden, fitness guru

An early champion of physical fitness, Prudden was an author, instructor and entrepreneur who followed her own advice and exercised regularly until her death at 97 on Dec. 11.

Long before Michele Obama adopted her campaign against childhood obesity, Prudden had been part of a study team that documented America’s out-of-shape youth in 1955 for another president—Dwight Eisenhower. As a result of the report, Eisenhower called for the creation of “The President’s Council on
Youth Fitness.”

The woman who, with her husband, climbed the Matterhorn on her honeymoon was one of the first fitness instructors with a national presence on TV. An author of 15 books, Prudden developed exercise classes for babies, the blind , those who wanted to improve their sex lives or prevent incontinence. She invented exercise equipment, rock walls and a line of fitness apparel. That’s a full-body leotard of her design that Prudden is wearing on the cover of Sports Illustration.

Despite a broken pelvis in her 20s and a triple bypass in her 90s, she never stopped working out. “ You can’t run back the clock,” Prudden said, “But you can rewind it.


  1. I am a Certified Bonnie Prudden Myotherapist on the Central Coast of California, Bonnie Prudden has made more then a dent in American Society, Americans just haven't caught up to her yet! But soon......

  2. Thank you for stopping by. We were inspired by Bonnie Prudden too
    and would love to learn more about myotherapy . If you can tell us
    about it or recommend some books or video, please do.

  3. I am a Certified Bonnie Prudden Myotherapist in the San Francisco Bay Area. Myotherapy is a unique combination of pressure applied to trigger points (by a Myotherapist, by a friend or relative, or by oneself, with specific corrective exercises. I became a CBPM after recovering from migraine headaches using this method, after 20 years of trying everything else under the sun for migraines without success. I have now been migraine- free for 15 years,thanks to Bonnie Prudden and her method, Myotherapy. Myotherapy relies on trigger point theory, which explains how many apparently different types of pain in different parts of the body can be all caused by trigger points in muscles. When the trigger points are inactivated, the pain is gone. The most useful book still in print is Pain Erasure by Bonnie Prudden. Bonnie Prudden Pain Erasure's website is My websites are and (under construction).