What is Pilates?
Pilates is a system of exercises on both the mat and special apparatus that was developed by Joseph H. Pilates, who was born December 9, 1883, and left us on October 9, 1967. Joe designed and built his equipment to meet the needs he saw in his clients. He began his practice helping the ill and those injured in battle to rehabilitate, which is why the Cadillac looks like something you could do while lying in a bed- his first Cadillacs were springs he rigged together from old beds, and the whole apparatus could be rolled over a bed-ridden client.
Joe came to America in order to escape the horrors of World War II. He met his wife, Clara, on board ship and helped her heal her arthritis. Together, they began the studio in New York.
Eventually, George Balanchine got wind of what was going on, and sent his dancers to work with Pilates. Romana Kryzanowska came to the studio through dance, and stayed to become Joe's student and eventually developed the system of Pilates that we know as the levels of progression.
Today, many people enjoy Pilates in many forms in order to stay fit and active, develop strong, lean muscles, maintain flexibility and zest for life.
Will I lose weight if I do Pilates?
Yes, you probably will- but more importantly, you will develop strength, agility, and flexibility.
If I have an injury, can I do Pilates?
Yes- but I ask that you clear it with your doctor or Physical Therapist first. I can work with your medical professionals to develop a rehab plan to get you back on track!
How is Pilates different from Yoga or other exercise forms?
Pilates is different from most exercises because it's non-impact and safe, and it really works on using the body as a whole. You're either lying on your back, on your side or kneeling on the floor where it's safe. When you move the body, you're trying to move it from the powerhouse, using your abdominal wall to protect your back. You're also working the body very evenly and symmetrically, making sure one side is not working harder than the other. It is more cardio-centric than Yoga, and there is more weight-bearing on the bones due to the resistance of the equipment (or in the case of mat class, gravity), helping to prevent osteoporosis.
Can I do Pilates if I am pregnant?
Absolutely! However, I would love you to get into the studio ASAP you know you are expecting, because as that baby grows, tissue in your abdomen pushes to either side, making your abs more vulnerable to injury if you start exercise further into the pregnancy. If we can get you started relatively soon in your nine month journey, Pilates will absolutely help you to maintain the strength and endurance you will need to give birth, recover quickly, and maintain your energy during your mothering journey!
Can I do Pilates if I am a senior citizen?
Of course! Wherever you are in your body, I can adapt the exercises to meet your needs. Additionally, I have completed training in order to help and understand individual needs related to the aging process, and one of the joys of my life is making exercise accessible to seniors and helping to increase mobility in my clients at whatever point they happen to be in their physical journey.
Can I take a Pilates mat class if I am a beginner and the other students have been in a class for a while?
Yes! I can modify the exercises on the fly to make them accessible to all levels in the class. If you get to mat and discover that there's a movement issue that we really need to address in a couple private sessions, we can talk about that. In most cases, individuals who come to class fit in just fine and find a supportive environment in which to make friends and have a fun space to work hard, laugh a lot, and get in shape.