Joseph Pilates was born in Germany in 1880. Determined to overcome childhood ailments including rickets, asthma and more, Pilates took his physical fitness seriously – his program was diverse including body building, skiing, gymnastics and more, and he was influenced by both Eastern and Western ideas of exercise. By 14, he was posing for anatomy charts.
During WW1, while interned in a camp in England, Pilates began sharing his physical fitness routine, “contrology”. He began to experiment with the springs from beds to create rehab contraptions for the disabled and bedridden internees, forming the foundation of apparatus used today in Pilates studios.
In 1926 Pilates moved to New York City where he and his wife Clara opened a studio to share their work. Pilates created over 600 exercises aimed at working the body as a whole. Pilates’ work is guided by several principles including breathing, centering, concentration, flow and precision. It emphasizes a mind/body connection, specific and deliberate movement, and making physical fitness and wellness a way of life.
Classical Pilates stays true to the original work – practitioners complete Joseph Pilates’ exercises in an exact order, and in the true, classical form that he created. Contemporary Pilates allows for deviations in order, and modifications to fit different needs or injuries.
BASI Pilates, the style favored by The Pilates Powerhaus, incorporates the entire Pilates repertoire while integrating scientific concepts to help adapt to individual needs and goals.