Juliu Horvath on the Origins of the Ultima® XS

Blog Content Education Interviews // August 01, 2023


I started on this project about thirty years ago. I had the idea to create the two equipment models [the Pulley Tower Combination Unit and GYROTONER®] together, but I tried, and I didn’t have the skill at that time. So, I tried all kinds of combinations, but nothing was good enough to be commercially exposed, or it was not stable enough or practical to be used. The prototypes were very beautiful and very interesting, but they were only one-of-a-kind masterpieces. Then, about three years ago, I started working on a different project, and that is how it dawned on me how to best combine the Pulley Tower with the Gyrotoner. I experimented with that idea, and it came out fantastic, and I am totally happy with the result.

As you can see, the Ultima® XS is functional, nothing is hindering or in the way, and nothing is clashing with each other, so it’s totally useful and user-friendly.

It’s also a space-saver, and that is most important while being totally functional. It was a total spur-of-the-moment inspiration that I saw it. I had a clear vision about the whole thing. Then the question is, how to make it really happen? I make the first model. With some limited resources that I had at that time, but with 30 years of experience, I put together a good enough model to show it to our manufacturers. And, of course, an intensive dialogue was needed about what I wanted as a final product and how it really has to be put together, and so on. This resulted in the first prototype. That came out very, very well with little, little changes in between. Then, the second prototype. The model was almost, almost good. Another round of prototypes, and the outcome was perfect. Not only that, but I am the most happy that we have several patents on the Ultima XS model, which is very important for me and for everybody in the community.


In actuality, many trainers struggle to accommodate those clients who are not able to sit on the regular bench and use the attached handles on the standard Pulley Tower Combination Unit.

Clients who have restrictions in their legs and hip joints and clients who have restrictions in their spine often need adjustments so they can find their comfort zone. The Ultima XS accommodates all of those needs for finding the individual comfort zone. This includes people in wheelchairs who can now be right in front of the handle unit and do all the exercises.

The Ultima XS makes all movements much more available for everybody, not just for the professional or the physically gifted, but also for those with restrictions and limitations and those in need of a therapeutic approach.

And, of course, instead of using two separate machines and changing from one to the other and back and forth, the trainer has it now all in a single space. Let’s say in a therapeutic setting, all you need is the Ultima XS, and you have the essence of everything that is needed for the session.

The Ultima XS allows for exercises and movement combination patterns that go beyond the possibilities of the Pulley Tower Combination Unit as a single unit and the Gyrotoner as a single unit. In fact, I am in the process of creating new material that was not available on the single Pulley Tower or on the single Gyrotoner unit. And in addition to this, the Ultima XS allows me to bring back some aspects that I developed for an apparatus that I developed and built in the 1990s.


I am definitely voting for the Ultima XS because it has so much potential that will never be available with the single equipment units of the Pulley Tower Combination Unit and the Gyrotoner. It’s simply not possible.

I thought that people would immediately recognize the benefits and brilliance of this, but it takes time. People get used to and attached to one equipment model, and they want to keep it forever like that. They don’t know the benefit of a new model until they experience it.

So, how can students experience the Ultima XS? Only by moving on the equipment. I guess those trainers who may be a little skeptical, they better go to a place where the Ultima XS is available, try out everything, and I’m sure by the time they finish the class, they are enthusiastic and excited about the Ultima XS.

The Ultima XS qualifies for several teacher training courses. One is the Level 1 course with added benefits. Just being able to lift the handles a little bit higher, tilt a little bit, and sit in front of the bench instead of like on a horse with the legs open and the bench between the legs. Even for myself and for everyone who has tried it, the reaction is, “Wow,” how much more comfortable it is. Many of the level one exercises are much more comfortable with this and allow the student to progress with more ease from a smaller range of motion to a bigger range of motion. There is only one exercise that I had to modify the hands-on for, and it’s actually much easier now because I give the intention for every movement and why the movement is happening the way it is happening. Once you understand the intention for every movement, it’s much easier to accomplish the hands-on.

After the completion of the Level 1 program, the trainer can then add the Gyrotoner Teachers Training Course. The Ultima XS Teachers Training curriculum and the curriculum for the Gyrotoner single unit are identical. The Gyrotoner function of the Ultima XS is a bit easier to maneuver. And now that we have two programs of the Gyrotoner training, it will be very easy to take the first part and wait for the second part later. More will come with experience and teacher-trainings. The Ultima XS offers a very rich movement curriculum from the therapeutic to the high-performance athletic spectrum.

There’s nothing much more to say. I am more happy than I have been with any of my equipment that I have finally found a formula that it can go out on a big scale, that is commercially useable, very approachable, and easy to handle everything. I have a lot of good feedback from those people who already use the Ultima XS. It proves exactly what I’ve been imagining and thinking and working it out for myself, and I see that many people are very happy with it.


Take a look at some other interviews with Juliu:

History of the GYROTONIC® Equipment with Creator Juliu Horvath

Part 1: A conversation with Juliu Horvath, Founder and Creator of the GYROTONIC® Methods

Part 2: A conversation with Juliu Horvath, Founder and Creator of the GYROTONIC ® Methods

To find Gyrotonic and Gyrokinesis classes near you, visit our Studio Finder tool.

To learn more about how to become a Gyrotonic or Gyrokinesis Trainer, visit our Teacher Education page.