Tangolates (also known in Buenos Aires as Tango-Pilates and Pilates-Tango), involves body exercises that rely on the characteristics of Tango and Pilates dance. It uses a partner method rather than individual exercises and incorporates aerobic and cardio elements. Tangolates is usually performed on a specially designed device, on a carpet or on a Pilates device.
Tangolates was born in 2004 in a public hospital for patients suffering from motor disorders. In order to help patients in their workouts, each has been paired with an instructor in partnership exercises.
In order to evaluate the effects of these exercises on the patients, a preliminary test of effectiveness was realized in the Pilates Room of Tamara Di Tella. The results of this research were presented at the 10th International Congress of Internal Medicine, August 24-27, 2004, in Buenos Aires. Patients were convened for 325 sessions over a period of three months. Subsequently, the patients said that the exercises helped them “not only to move better but also to feel better”. Their evaluations concluded that Tangolates’ partnership exercises help patients improve not only their movement but also their quality of life. According to Di Tella, the fact that Tangolates requires a relationship between two people is a very interesting research topic. Partner work can help stimulate the brain and could become an alternative path to successful movement. “It is this internal ignition that can work for some patients with brain disorders,” says Di Tella. Indeed, the strong and concentrated rhythm of Tango and the fact that it is done in close coordination with a partner is an excellent stimulant to initiate the movement. “Tango stimulates cooperation and creates bonds like no other dance, and it’s an extraordinary motivation for some patients,” says Di Tella.
Tangolates combines the basic coordination and stability inherent in Pilates with the cardio or aerobic element of Tango.