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What is Pilates?

Joseph Pilates

Joseph H. Pilates was born in Germany, in 1883.

As a child, he suffered from asthma and rheumatic fever. He dedicated his entire life to strengthen his body. He did body building and gymnastics. In 1912, he moved to England where he worked as a boxer, circus performer and self-defense trainer. During World War I, he was interned with other German citizens in a camp near Lancaster .

He trained other inmates in self defense, wrestling, and physical fitness. During this years he developed his apparatus and mat work. In the early 1920's, Pilates emigrated to the United States. On the ship to America he met his future wife Clara. They founded a studio in New York City what was very popular within dancers and performing arts artists. He called his method "Contrology" which he defined as “the complete coordination of the body, mind and spirit.” He died in 1967 at the age of 84.

What is Pilates?

The Pilates method is a corrective system of exercises that will strengthen and stretch your body. The exercise repertoire is performed with control and precision. Romana Kryzanowska, Joseph Pilates's protégé, said that the Pilates method could be defined in three words “Stretch and strength with control”.