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East London Pilates Studio - Reformer and Mat Classes

History of Classical Pilates

Pilates is a system of exercise designed by German born Joseph Pilates. His method gained popularity when he moved to New York in the 1920's and started teaching with his wife Clara.

Initially, Jo designed only a set of exercises on the mat and on a piece of equipment called a reformer. His classical order is still taught today in some strictly classical studios around the world. Over time, as he gained more clients, he developed more exercises and made more pieces of equipment to suit his client's particular needs - a piece called the ped-o-pull which is now often found in studios worldwide was originally designed for an opera singing client of his who required more projection and power for her voice!

Today, there are many different styles of Pilates that have developed. There are many classical teachers sticking closely to the original order and style Jo designed, there are many rehab and physio influenced teachers as well as many personal training influenced teachers. However, no matter what the influence of the teacher, the method and its original tenets of breath, alignment and whole body integration are still true for a well trained teacher.

What is Pilates?

Pilates is designed to stretch, strengthen and uniformly develop the body in order to prevent future injury and reduce or alleviate chronic pain.

By using the specialized equipment that Joseph designed, Pilates offers a resistance for muscular strengthening while balancing muscular force at the joint. It stimulates circulation through facilitating muscular flexibility, joint range of motion and proper musculoskeletal alignment.