The packaging of chromosomal DNA by nucleosomes condenses and organizes the genome, but occludes many regulatory DNA elements. However, this constraint also allows nucleosomes and other chromatin components to actively participate in the regulation of transcription, chromosome segregation, DNA replication, and DNA repair. To enable dynamic access to packaged DNA and to tailor nucleosome composition in chromosomal regions, cells have evolved a set of specialized chromatin remodeling complexes (remodelers). Remodelers use the energy of ATP hydrolysis to move, destabilize, eject, or restructure nucleosomes. Here, we address many aspects of remodeler biology: their targeting, mechanism, regulation, shared and unique properties, and specialization for particular biological processes. We also address roles for remodelers in development, cancer, and human syndromes.