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Pilates with Pat MacRae Pt 2 – History of Pilates

Pilates is all about connecting your mind to your body. It is about improving your core strength, your mobility and stability.

A Brief History of Pilates.

Joseph Pilates was born in Dusseldorf, Germany in 1880. He was a sickly child suffering from rickets, asthma and rheumatic fever. He was determined to live a better life and began to explore and practice body building, gymnastics, diving and other physical activities. He wa influenced by ancient Greek and roman regimes and this helped him develop a system throughout his life.

In 1912 Joseph traveled to England as a circus performer. When WW1 broke out he was interned in a camp on the Isle of Man along with other German nationals. While there he began to teach and expand his physical fitness program and developed different sorts of apparatus to help rehabilitation in the sick and disabled.

After the war he returned to Germany where he was invited to train the new army. He saw the implications in doing this so decided to leave Germany and go to America. On his way to America he met his future wife Clara who soon began developing and teaching Joseph’s methods. In 1926 they set up their first studio in New York which attracted a varying range of clients.

Joseph was a disciplined man, as his teaching and physical condition revealed. Initially he developed 34 Pilates moves that he named, but these were very difficult for the lay man to complete. In the early ’90s Pilates took hold in the UK and was transformed into the modern Pilates that we know today.

One of Joseph’s moves was broken down into smaller and easier moves (one original exercise may now be broken down into 3 or more moves) to allow students of today to practice them.

Modern Pilates has grown into a form of exercise that engages the body in all aspects of control, strength, mobility, flexibility and core work. It is enjoyed by many thousands of people practicing it world wide.

Interested in classes or maybe just finding out a bit more about Pilates? Find Pat on Facebook by searching Pilates with Pat MacRae

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