Pilates, originally called “Contrology,” is an exercise system developed by Joseph Pilates that strengthens, stretches, tones, and improves posture.
Who was Joseph H. Pilates?
Joe was born in 1880 in Germany to a Greek father, a world-class athlete, and a German mother, a naturopath. Joe was a sickly child. He had asthma, rickets and rheumatic fever. This is why his exercise system does not stress the heart or lungs. He was “put outdoors” to heal and became an exercise enthusiast practicing many forms including Yoga, boxing and gymnastics. His mother was his first client. She developed a limp when he was about 10 years old and he rehabilitated her.
When World War I began Joe became interned as an enemy alien in England. He worked with the patients to rehabilitate injuries and promote overall health. Joe modified the hospital beds and developed a system using bedsprings as resistance to help bedridden patients. This later became the trapeze table and reformer. The men in Joe’s dorm did the mat work exercises every evening. During the outbreak of Spanish Influenza in 1918, 20 million people died. No one under Joe’s care died!
Joe immigrated to the United States in 1926, which was a time of peace in between World War 1 and World War 2. Joe met Clara, a nurse and his future wife, on the boat to the US. They settled in New York City and opened their exercise studio on 8th Avenue. George Balanchine’s studio was in the same building. This exposed Joe’s work to the dance community, especially it’s success in rehabilitating injured dancers and allowing them to perform fully again. Besides working with dancers, the general public also began to benefit from the Pilates method to strengthen, stretch and balance the body.
Joe taught up until his death in 1968. He continued to create and build more apparatus that expanded his system and it’s effectiveness. Joe and Clara also trained many of his students to teach the Pilates system. His book, Return to Life, is still relevant and is a core text in any Pilates teacher training program. The Pilates method continues to inform and influence the fitness and wellness industry.
Did you find this interesting?
Please feel free to comment or ask questions below.
If you are interested in trying some private lessons or need some guidance on getting some Pilates in your life, click here to contact me directly.
All Absorbent Products Active Aging Addiction Aerobic And Strength Training Arthritis Balance Beach Body Biohacking Biomat Black Friday Bladder Symptoms Body Image Bone Density Boundaries Breathing BUILDING BETTER BONES Bulletproof Bulletproof Coffee Bulletproof Human Potential Coaching Bulletproof Vibration Plate Bunions By Donation Cardio Childbirth Chronic Pelvic Pain Community Consistency Continuing Education Contrology Core Strength Cryotherapy Current Mask Guidelines Current Pricing Cyber Monday Diaphragm Dynamic Aging Eating Disorders Emotional Agility Falling Arches Fall Prevention Fascia Fascial Research Fascial Stretch Therapy Feet Fitness Flexibility Flip Flops Foam Rolling Foot Health Foot Pain Foot Rolling Free Gift FREE TRIAL! Frequent Urination Fst Fundraiser Gift Certificates Gratitude Group Classes Hamstrings Happy Feet Heart Attack & Stroke Prevention Heel Pain Hip Hinge Hit Play Not Pause Holiday Deals Human Potential Coaching Hundred Series Hydration Hyperbaric Oxygen Chamber Incontinence Inflammation Infra Red Sauna Infra-red Sauna Intermittent Fasting Interval Training Joe Pilates Journaling Joy Keto Kiwanis Recreation Center Knee Health Labor Leaking Life Coaching Life Hacks Lower Back Pain Mat Pilates Meal Planning Meditation Membership Menopause Mental Health Mindfulness Mind Management Mobility Movement Breaks Muse Headband Name That Workshop Competition Neck And Shoulder Tension New Prices Newsletter Nourishing Movement October 2020 Osteoporosis Oura Ring Overactibe Bladder Paleo Parkinson's Pelvic Floor Pelvic Organ Prolapse Pelvic Stability Peri-Menopause Pfilates Pilates Pilates On Tour Pilates Principles Plantar Fasciitis Podcast Pomodoro Method Post Natal Posture Preganan Pregnancy Prenatal Pricing Information Productivity Props PWR! Exercise Group Red Light Therapy Reiki Resilience Resolutions Resources Retreat Scapular Glide Self Care Self-care Self Coaching Self-coaching Self Myofascial Release Self-myofascial Release Self Talk Self-talk Shoulder Mobility Sleep Sleep Hygiene Spirit Of Yoga Sprints St. Mary's Food Bank Stress Cycle Stress Management Stress Urinary Incontinence Stretch Stretching Subscription Sunscreen Susan Treadway Swan Rehab Thought Patterns Travel Urinary Urgency Videos Virtual Sessions Vulnerability Weight Loss Wellness Workshop Zoom Zoom Classes