Pilates is INTELLIGENT EXERCISE, developed by the German boxer Joseph Pilates, where the mind and breath control the body. Incredibly effective -- it's used for physical fitness, rehabilitation from injury, pre/post pregnancy, for athletes/dancers, to anyone at any age.
Focusing on deep core work (the Powerhouse) and five basic principles:
1. The breath - Proper breathing ensures that your muscles (and organs) have enough oxygen; you release tension, and gain a better focus which includes the whole body
2. Pelvic placement (stabilization of the spine)
3. Rib cage placement (stabilization of the upper back, abdominal engagement)
4. Scapular movement (stabilization of the neck and upper back)
5. The head and cervical spine
“The first requisite of happiness is physical fitness” Joseph Pilates
WHAT DOES PILATES LOOK LIKE?
Pilates roots are in the Matwork, and the Mat exercises translate to different pieces of equipment - the Reformer, the Wunda chair, the Cadillac, the Tower, the Arc, the Arc Barrel, the Spine Corrector, the Springboard, and less used pieces of equipment like the Pedi Pull, Small Arm Chair and Toe Corrector. Each piece of equipment feels different on the body which is why Pilates will always engage your body in a new way and feel challenging.
The design of the Pilates equipment is meant to "realign" your body while working with all muscle groups and layers of the fascia with the Powerhouse (core) and breath driving the exercises using "dynamic alignment". The result is oxygenated organs, a totally effective workout with quick results, injury repair, better posture, a sharper mind, and an overall renewed sense of well being.