What Is Pilates?


joseph pilates“It is the mind itself which builds the body.” Joseph Pilates

Pilates (pronounced PEE-LA-TEEZ), in a word, is exercise!

More accurately, it is corrective exercise, balancing the body through a series of exercises for physical conditioning developed by Joseph Pilates (1880-1968).

Originally his system of exercise was called Contrology, “the complete coordination of body, mind and spirit”, achieving uniform development and balance within the body, emphasizing strong core or “powerhouse” development through the use of imagery.

The series of exercises are the Mat, performed without the assistance of equipment, and the Reformer series, performed on the Reformer. The more stabilizing apparatus equipment, such as the Pole and Low Chair, help support the body in order to find the smaller and deeper muscles of the Powerhouse, assisting in their strengthening and lengthening to achieve balance.

The Pilates method of exercise emphasizes eight basic principles to achieve uniform development of the body: alignment; breathing; centering; concentration; coordination; flowing motion; relaxation; and stamina.