About Pilates - Joseph Pilates

Pilates is an exercise method originated in the early 1900s by Joseph Pilates, who was born in Germany in 1880. He first devised a series of exercises to be done on a mat and then invented various pieces of equipment to enhance the results. In 1923 he moved to New York, where he set up his studio. His original clients were professional dancers and sportsmen and women, but since his death in 1967 his exercises have been modified to make them accessible to people of all ages and levels of fitness.

His method is based on several exercise regimes and focuses on strengthening and toning the core muscles of the trunk, which he called the powerhouse of the body. Pilates addresses the body as a whole and aims to bring it into balance by allowing the muscles and joints to come into equilibrium, correcting asymmetries and preventing re-injury. The method lengthens the spine, increases flexibility and improves strength. Pilates emphasises the use of the breath with movement, which also helps relieve stress and tension.

Pilates is increasingly recommended by osteopaths, physiotherapists and doctors to assist in rehabilitation from injury and to reduce back and joint pain.

It can also help to improve your performance in your chosen sport.

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