Where does the name Pilates come from?
The Pilates Method of Body Conditioning was developed by Joseph Hubertus Pilates during the first half of the 20th century. “Uncle Joe” was born in 1883 and referred to his method as “The Art of Contrology”, opening his first studio in midtown Manhattan in the 1920’s. A German immigrant with a fondness for cigars and a talent for building equipment out of old beer kegs, JP was way ahead of his time and was able to preserve his method by passing it on to his disciples, who carried out his legacy after his death. He often taught wearing very short shorts – and not much else. He died in 1967 in NYC.
So what’s the deal?
Pilates is a system of exercises that focuses on strengthening the “core”, which generally refers to the abdominal, back, and hip muscles. The exercises are done with the upmost precision, and Pilates not only makes you stronger, it gives you a better awareness of how to move your body properly, so that you can keep yourself free from injury during all of your regular sports and activities.
Most of the exercises in the Pilates system challenge the core by requiring you to stabilize your spine against the movement of the limbs, and it is low-impact and accessible for pretty much everyone. Kristin was trained in the Classical Pilates method, which means she is rooted in the original system of exercises that Joe himself laid out.
WHAT RESULTS CAN I EXPECT TO SEE IF I PRACTICE PILATES?
Increased core strength, greater flexibility, and better posture and body awareness are the most common results of starting a Pilates program. Depending on where you are in your fitness journey, there may be many more! Pilates is great for weightlifters who need a cross training day, people recovering after an injury, post-natal women, people who just want a great workout, or even someone who has never exercised before and wants to start.
BUT I THOUGHT THAT PILATES WAS ONLY FOR WOMEN / DANCERS / CELEBRITIES…?
You are incorrect. Even though you may be big and buff and lift heavy weights, Kristin will poke her fingers into your abdomen and make you cry.