Watch an Animated History of Pilates by Taube Pilates:

What IS Pilates?
Pilates is a method of conditioning that transforms and rebalances the muscles and skeleton into a longer and stronger body; producing excellent results for people of all ages and abilities – couch potatoes and professional athletes alike. Movements are initiated from the core and are corrective in nature.
What is the basis of this Method?
The Principles of Pilates are:

1) CONTROL and CONCENTRATION – Integration of body and mind to create body awareness. Joseph Pilates called his method “Contrology.”

2) Working from the CORE – Utilizing abdominal muscles to attain and maintain a ‘neutral,’ supple and stable spine (supporting all natural curves).

3) PRECISION OF MOVEMENT – for alignment and efficiency.

4) FLOWING MOVEMENT or SEQUENCING – Integrate more muscles to eliminate overuse, stress and fatigue.

5) BREATH – Breathing with intention relieves stress, energizes the mind and body, creates endurance and strengthens the abdominal muscles.

What is the difference between Pilates and Yoga?
Joseph Pilates actually studied yoga. There are yoga-based movements in Pilates, but no poses are held and the breathing technique is unique. In Pilates, emphasis is on exhalation as the abdominal muscles are strengthened during expiration. 
Is this just a fad?
The Pilates Method was created in the early 1900’s! It’s current popularity came about as celebrities and professional athletes such as Jake Arietta, Kate Hudson, Julia Roberts and many others incorporated the Method into their conditioning. Some of these folks came to Pilates to recover as well as train. Another contributing factor was litigation over the trade-marking of the term “Pilates.” The term has now been legalized as generic – like yoga and aerobics. The Method is still making its way into the mainstream. Since it applies to all ages and abilities, its applications and benefits are LIMITLESS!
How is Pilates integrated into a traditional workout routine?
Based on individual goals and the need for additional flexibility and strength training for sports, hobbies or occupations, Pilates is a natural fit. Pilates enhances traditional conditioning as it promotes musculoskeletal health. The Principles can be applied to every discipline and practiced every day since no muscle group is worked to fatigue. During intense training, Pilates can actually be restful and rejuvenating – even when abbreviated.
How can Pilates be beneficial for all ages and abilities?
Pilates is corrective conditioning. Movements are based on Fundamentals that build body awareness – integrating mind and body. Functional movement. The exercises are designed to be layered, creating uniform development of all muscle groups while decompressing and aligning the skeleton.
What kind of training are your instructors required to have?
All instructors are graduates of comprehensive training programs that adhere to the Pilates Method Alliance (PMA) guidelines. Our highly trained instructors come from unique backgrounds such as nurse practitioner, myofascial release, massage therapy, dance, and fitness instruction.
Do I have to use a "Reformer" to get a Pilates workout?
Not at all. Incorporation of equipment increases the number of exercises from about 100 to over 800 moves! As a matter of fact, the Method is based on Fundamentals that are performed on a floor Mat. On a mat, it’s simply you and gravity. The equipment: Reformer, Cadillac, Tower, Wunda Chair, Ladder Barrel, Foot Corrector and accessories such as the Magic Circle, Foam Roller, Flexbands, and physioballs are all utilized to assist individuals’ ability to access core muscles and build body awareness. The equipment also adds variety. As one advances through the exercises the equipment can then be utilized to challenge each move, increasing core capability.
How will I know that it's working?
In the words of Joseph Pilates: “In ten sessions you will feel a difference; in twenty sessions you will see a difference, and in thirty sessions you will have an entirely new body.”

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