What is Pilates?
AGE 57 AGE 82
"Since we are living in this modern age we must out of necessity devote more time and more thought to the important matter of acquiring physical fitness." - Joseph Pilates
German-born, Joseph H. Pilates developed Pilates (then called Contrology) while in an internment camp in England during World War I. As a sickly child he always turned to physical fitness training as a path to good health. During his internment he developed several revolutionary exercises, some using his bed as a resistance machine. The rehabilitation principles in the exercises led him to work with those wounded in the war. Pilates claimed, "Contrology is complete coordination of body, mind and spirit."
In 1926, Joseph moved to New York where he continued to develop his exercises, which soon became popular with dancers including George Balanchine and Martha Graham. Today actors, professional athletes and dancers use Pilates. Others use Pilates as a regular fitness program or for rehabilitation and strengthening of areas of the body that have experienced trauma.
During Joseph's continual development of Contrology and his many inventions of equipment, chairs and beds he also wrote two books -- "Pilates' Return to Life Through Contrology" published in 1945 and "Your Health" published in 1934.