Joseph Pilates had an unhealthy childhood, suffered from asthma, rickets and rheumatic fever. His father , a native of Greece was a reward winning gymnast. So Pilates dedicated his life to strengthen himself physically. Besides skiing, he started to study body-building, yoga, kung fu, & gymnastics. He earned his living as a professional boxer, circus performer, self-defence trainer at police schools, even at Scotland Yard. He realized that bad posture and inefficient breathing were the main reasons for a poor health so he devised a series of exercises and training techniques and engineered all the equipment, specifications and tuning required to teach his methods properly.
War broke out & Joseph had to return to Germany where he was required to train soldiers for fitness.
In about 1925, Pilates migrated to the United States. On the ship to America, he met his future wife Clara. The couple founded a studio in New York City and directly taught and supervised their students, men & women, well into the 1960s ''Contrology'', related to encouraging the use of the mind to control muscles, focusing attention on core postural muscles that help keep the body balanced and provide support for the spine. Pilates exercises teach awareness of breath and of alignment of the spine, and strengthen the deep torso and abdominal muscles.Back to News