About Joseph Pilates
Growing up in Germany, Pilates was a sickly child suffering from various illnesses. He dedicated his life to improving his physical strength by studying anatomy while boxing, circus performing, doing gymnastics and martial arts and body building. Joseph Pilates developed his own body performing his exercises, as well as engineered the apparatuses used for his exercises. During WWI, while in an internment camp on the Isle of Man, Pilates physically trained his peers and helped some soldiers move and exercise while injured. During an epidemic, Pilates and his students managed to remain healthy while those around them fell ill and/or perished. Emigrating to America around 1925, Joseph met his wife Clara on the passage. Together they opened up the first Pilates studio in NYC and established a devoted following teaching until the 1960s. Pilates taught his Method to many students who then went on to continue teaching his methods. Today Pilates is taught worldwide with a wide array of teachings all stemming from Joseph's original method developed over one hundred years ago.
Pilates is a unique and innovative system of stretching and strengthening exercises developed over one hundred years ago by Joseph H. Pilates. Pilates is a total body workout that strengthens and tones muscles, improves posture and balance, provides flexibility, can create a streamlined body and most of all, connects body and mind together.
The exercises are safe for anyone, beginner to elite athletes and can be done using a mat or using spring-based apparatuses. Pilates focuses on strengthening the core of the body: the abdominals, back, hamstrings and buttocks, promoting a more upright position to sit and stand taller, create functional body awareness and prevent injury. Pilates integrates and recruits muscles to work together to efficiently perform the exercises aimed at lengthening and building the muscles that support your entire body structure, especially, your spine. Practicing using the six principles: concentration, control, centering, flow, breathing and precision, Pilates promotes a healthy mind, healthy body and healthy life.
People have a variety of reasons for beginning and practicing Pilates. Some people do Pilates to alleviate back pain, improve posture or balance, enhance sports performance, to move or continue exercising while another body part is injured. If you're new to Pilates, it is important to start at the beginning with fundamental exercises and as you build strength, exercises become more challenging developing more muscle stamina and endurance. Whatever your reason, from beginner to super advanced, Pilates supports everyday functioning, can be rehabilitative and increases strength. As with any endeavor, Pilates is a journey and a lifelong process. Practicing Pilates is a discipline which takes time and patience.