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Whatever Bonnie learned and is now applying at the institute, it certainly seems to work. Only 4% of her students fail the Kraus-Weber test (as compared with over 50% failure among American schoolchildren).
"We at the institute know how to teach," Bonnie said of herself and her assistants. "Our methods get results in fitness, and in pride, on a self-comparison basis. As a matter of fact, it's the institute for a lot of things besides physical fitness. One year five women in my classes got pregnant, and I said just because I'd relaxed and loosened them up I wouldn't take the responsibility for the results. All five returned to be reconditioned and later they brought the new babies too, so my roll was increased by five. It pays to turn out a fine product."
The product is turned out in a onetime public school, in which Bonnie has so far invested $60,000 to $70,000 of her own money. She converted the school into six gymnasiums, locker rooms, facilities for a massage room and snack bar and her Madison Avenue-type office (which even includes a tilting lounge chair like the one in the movie Man in the Gray Flannel Suit).
To be part of all this, adults pay $3.50 an hour (children $2.50) for a 30-week course which takes place in the gyms or, when the weather is nice, outdoors on a red, yellow and blue obstacle course, euphemistically called "the physical fitness apparatus" (see chart, page 63).
Bonnie designed this ingenious muscle mover herself and had it built for $3,000. Its excellence was underlined by a recent request for one just like it from Sargent College, the country's leading women's physical education teacher's college. Bonnie happily supplied Sargent—gratis—with detailed dimensions and instructions.
Such a gift seemed entirely appropriate to Bonnie, a woman more interested in spreading her doctrine than increasing her dollars. It was in line with her taking her daughters out of public schools "because they weren't getting enough physical education."
"My daughters are my two stakes in America," said Bonnie with great feeling. "I want them strong and emotionally stable, to face what comes. Anyone without his head on backward wants the same things for his kids. But we can't just want; we have to act. Eventually," she said, pacing up and down vigorously, "I will put an Institute for Physical Fitness in every city in the country. I'll help wake up the public through my books. I don't plan for today. I plan for five years from today. The Chinese plan for five generations. If we could do that, we could maybe change the world," she ended.
No one looking at and listening to Bonnie would have doubts that she—if not the rest of us—could.