Imagine an exercise program that
you look forward to, that engages you, and that leaves you
refreshed and alert with a feeling of physical and mental
well being. The Pilates Method (pronounced puh-LAH-teez)
of body conditioning will do all this... and more.
Developed in the 1920s by the legendary physical trainer,
Joseph H. Pilates, the Pilates Method is an exercise system
focused on improving flexibility and
strength for the total body without building bulk. Not surprisingly, some
of the first people to use the Pilates Method were dancers
such as Martha Graham
and George Balanchine.
The basic principles of Pilates conditioning
are to make people more aware of their bodies as single integrated
units, to improve
alignment and breathing,
and to increase efficiency of movement. The Pilates Method works many of
the deeper muscles together, improving coordination and balance,
to achieve efficient
and graceful movement.
Unlike other exercise programs, the
Pilates Method does not require mindless repetition. The
method consists of a sequence of carefully
some carried out on specially designed equipment. Each exercise is designed
to stretch and strengthen the muscles involved, opening the joints and releasing
tension. The Pilates Method includes specific breathing patterns for each
exercise to assist in directing energy to specific areas
while relaxing others.