If you’re new to Pilates or have been practicing for years, it’s always valuable to understand the origin of the movements that you telling your body to do. So we’ve put together some fast facts so you can get to know the person, (yes, Joseph Pilates was a real person) behind the moves.
- Born in 1883 in Monchengladbach, Germany.
- Was tormented from other children growing up because he was small for his age and suffered from asthma, rickets, and rheumatic fever.
- Began studying bodybuilding, yoga, martial arts, wrestling, gymnastics – you name it. By the age of 14, he was modeling for anatomical charts.
- Developed floor exercises while held in an alien camp in England during WW1.
- For the bedridden citizens, Joe created equipment (today’s Cadillac and Reformer) with springs from the bed and attached them to the bed frame so they could exercise too.
- Moved to New York and met his wife, Clara, on a boat to the U.S. and together opened his first studio near the New York City Ballet. Here, he taught professional ballet dancers who later went on to teach his series of exercises, known as The Pilates Method.
- Wrote several books including Return to Life through Contrology and Your Health.
- Died at the age of 87.
Joseph Pilates dedicated his life to fitness and created a workout that is proven to tone and condition the core muscles that keep your body in perfect balance and your mind in control. How does getting to know the history behind Pilates, or any exercise you do, help you understand and appreciate the movements more?