What is Pilates?

The Pilates method of exercise is a unique system of stretching and strengthening resulting in a body that is stronger and better balanced. It improves breathing and co-ordination.

What is the history of Pilates?

Joseph Pilates developed Pilates in the early 1900s. Joseph Pilates had a history of medical problems, and from his early experiences, he felt that a gentle yet effective system of non-impact exercise was necessary. Pilates was originally designed as a means of physical rehabilitation. It helps to create a fit, strong, flexible body without creating bulky muscles. The very first Pilates Studio was opened in 1923 in Manhattan.

What is the difference between Pilates and Yoga?

Yoga originated in ancient India as a means of preparing the body for meditation. Hatha Yoga (the yoga of movement) increases strength and flexibility whilst also bringing about peace of mind. Yoga is a mind/body exercise. While Pilates also requires concentration and a mind/body connection, its roots are based on physical fitness. The focus of yoga is a state of mind, whereas, the focus of Pilates is developing a strong and supple body.

Who is Pilates for?

Pilates is for everyone of all ages, physical abilities and fitness levels. Pilates classes are recommended for people in good health, with no health concerns: this includes less active people as well as athletes and body-builders!

People who have health concerns often find Pilates very helpful, but are recommended to contact a qualified Pilates instructor in advance, as they will require individualised attention/private Pilates sessions. In these cases, GP approval is also required.

Will Pilates bulk me up?

No. Pilates may help you find definition, but definitely not bulk..

How big are the classes?

The classes will be small – there will be no more than 14 people per class. This allows them to be more personal and means you can get as much out of them as possible.

Does Pilates really help with weight loss?

Because Pilates builds muscle tone, it will ultimately help you burn more calories in general. It also creates a lean look to the body as it tones without adding bulk. When trying to lose weight, it is a good idea to combine Pilates with cardiovascular exercise, like walking, and a sensible eating plan.

How is it different?

Bringing the mind and body together, Pilates works the stabilizing muscles of the body building a girdle of strength between the rib cage and the pelvis. The girdle of strength helps protect the spine, particularly through the low back area.

What benefits are there from participating in a class?

Your questions can be answered by a qualified Pilates instructor, you will gain feedback on your technique and know when you are improving.  Exercising in a regular class with others will provide greater motivation to continue and progress.

What should I wear to a Pilates class?

Comfortable, stretchy, fitted clothing works best. No trainers, but socks are acceptable.

What do I need to bring?

Mats and equipment are provided.