Pilates was developed during WWI by German-born Joseph Pilates to improve his own personal physique. Later it was his belief that 1950s modern living and incorrect posture were the fundamental causes of ill health and inspired his method.
increased lung capacity
improved core strength
When coaching people on ways to improve their posture and prevent future recurrences, I often find myself repeating the same mantra, "Work on your core muscles and stretch regularly".
Pilates incorporates a strong stretch component complimented by superior bio-mechanics making each exercise the focus of weaker muscle groups.
When it comes down to it, people want the same thing - great results, and with Pilates, that's what you get.
“Contrology develops the body uniformly, corrects wrong postures, restores physical vitality, invigorates the mind, and elevates the spirit” - Joseph Pilates
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the Pilates Principles?
There are 8 principles that informed Joseph Pilates method and continue to influence Pilates teaching today. It is the integration of these principles that accounts for the balance, grace and ease of movement that flows from its practice.
CENTERING All movement flows from a strong centre ('core' or 'powerhouse'). This is comprised of the pelvic floor and the powerful transverse abdominis muscles - the stabiliser muscles of the torso that support the vertebral column.
CONCENTRATION To ensure complete control of each movement, the mind must be focused and alert to the body's capabilities and limitations. This requires complete muscular control, facilitated by acute mind-body synergy.
ALIGNMENT Pilates makes us aware of good postural alignment and restores muscular imbalances by encouraging the body to move with the minimum amount of stress placed on the joints.
STAMINA Repetition and frequency improves skill and strengthens the body. Integration of each these key principles in your daily activities will enhance the benefits of Pilates practice.
PRECISION Mastering the techniques within Pilates forms is the source of quality execution of each movement. Co-ordination.
BREATH Using the breath correctly is integral to realising the full benefits of Pilates.
FLOW Exercises should be performed in a balanced and flowing way to optimise the work for the muscles being recruited.
RELAXATION The aim is to focus on releasing stress from corresponding physical areas of tension by enabling the body to move with ease.
What are the benefits of regular Pilates practice?
Pilates strengthens the body's core (abdominals and back muscles) by developing pelvic stability, spinal mobility, and abdominal control. As primarily a form of physical conditioning, other benefits include improved flexibility, stamina, and joint mobility. In Pilates, our own body weight is used as resistance, so Pilates is a low impact form of exercise. Therefore, the exercises are designed for, and can be modified to suit an individual's flexibility and strength limitations.
When performed correctly, Pilates is claimed to restore the proper equilibrium between various muscle groups, thereby reducing stress on over-utilised muscles.