About Pilates

designed to improve posture, core strength, mobilisation and flexibility

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a form of exercise designed to improve posture, core strength, mobilisation and flexibility. It links movement with breath, focuses on body alignment, and teaches you coordination, concentration & control of the body.

The History

German born Joseph Pilates was an unhealthy child so he dedicated his life to improving his own physical strength to overcome the limitations being place on his body. Joseph Pilates came to believe that the “modern” life-style, bad posture, and inefficient breathing lay at the roots of poor health. To address these issues, he ultimately designed a series of exercises and training techniques which has evolved over the years in to what we know as Pilates today.

In the 1920’s he was living in England, working as a professional boxer, circus performer and self-defence trainer at police schools and Scotland Yard. Never the less, at the outbreak of WW1, as a German national, he was placed into forced internment in England. It is here he began refining and teaching his equipment system of mat exercises that later became “contrology” related to encouraging the use of the mind to control the muscles, focusing attention on core postural muscles that help keep the body balanced and provide support for the spine. In particular, Pilates exercises teach awareness of breath and of alignment of the spine, strengthen the deep torso and abdominal muscles. He used his technique to rehabilitate detainees who were suffering from diseases and injuries.

In 1926, after the war, he moved to New York and soon his technique became popular amongst the dance community where he went on to establish his own studio. His reputation proceeded him and his technique was used by dancers for strength, grace and rehabilitation.

The fundamentals of Pilates are based on a thorough understanding of human anatomy, and although Pilates as an exercise has evolved to reflect current biomechanical thinking, the philosophy and the movement patterns remain true to his original principles. Joseph Pilates embraced a holistic approach to exercise and his system was designed to be integrated into every aspect of life. “With regular practice you will find yourself incorporating the principles into everyday movement”

Pilates Berkshire

My Approach

My aim is to enhance your well-being and improve your quality of life by engaging you in exercise. I like to educate during my sessions so that you understand the benefits of what you are doing but my main focus is for you to enjoy my classes so you keep coming back and reap the rewards of the effort you put in. When I teach I focus on getting the right balance between strength, flexibility, & mobility. A body only works well if it is balanced.

I vary my classes each week and utilise small Pilates equipment to maximise exercises. Without applying change our bodies will adapt and remain the same. It is important we apply the FITT principle to any form of exercise so we can continually improve. FITT is an acronym that stands for frequency, intensity, time and type. I will encourage you to progress at a level that is suitable and comfortable for your own ability and will adapt or modify the exercise where necessary. I enjoy working with people of all levels, ages and abilities and will modify exercises to suit individual needs.

Whilst every teacher has a different approach, the fundamentals remain the same. I play soft soothing background music to relax you and I hope that when you have completed my class you will leave feeling fresh, rejuvenated and toned.