While Pilates has increased in popularity over the years for increased flexibility, strength training, and even weight loss, not many people know how or when it was started.
We believe wholly in the benefits of Pilates, which is an exercise system designed to strengthen muscles, increase flexibility, and improve overall health. Therefore, we wanted to share a brief history of Pilates and the benefits it can have on your life!
Origin of Pilates
The concept and building blocks of Pilates as we know it today was developed by a German man named Joseph Pilates, born in 1883 with several illnesses including asthma and rheumatic fever. From an early age, Joseph Pilates dedicated himself to not only improving his physical health, but also increasing his mental strength. He believed strongly in the mental capacity to improve physical issues. This core belief is paramount in Pilates exercises where you are aware of each and every breath while focusing also on the alignment and strength of your spine, abdominal muscles, and overall torso area.
Joseph Pilates refined his system while stuck in Britain (due to World War I) by training other German soldiers with his methods. After the war, he published two books (in 1934, then 1945) on his new exercise regime and its mental and physical health benefits. Joseph Pilates taught several of his students his traditional methods so they would continue his work and promote Pilates to a more general audience. While it started small, Pilates eventually grew from just a few practitioners in the 20th Century to become a widely known fitness method alongside yoga for celebrities in the early years of the 21st Century. And it just keeps growing!
Benefits of Pilates
In the words of Joseph Pilates, “In ten sessions, you’ll feel the difference, in twenty you’ll see the difference, and in thirty you’ll have a new body.”
Pilates is unique for both fitness and rehab purposes because it focuses on whole muscle groups rather than individual muscles. By building flexibility, strength, and endurance all at the same time, Pilates works well for a wide range of people.
Athletes and dancers love Pilates for overall conditioning; prenatal and postnatal women can benefit from the noncompetitive nature of Pilates classes; seniors practicing Pilates can improve their flexibility and stability; and people at various stages of physical rehabilitation will benefit from Pilates.
Pilates can help your energy and posture while sitting at a desk, while enjoying your hobbies such as gardening, and even when participating in high impact sports. It truly is a universal system for improving your overall health!
Check out our Pilates classes schedule here!