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The History of Joseph Pilates.
Joseph Pilates was born in Germany in 1880. He was a small sickly child, but by the age of 14 he had strengthened his body in such a way that he no longer suffered from his childhood illnesses and was fit enough to pose for anatomical charts. Joseph's family doctor had given him a book about the human body and movement. He memorised the book and this inspired him to study many forms of exercise, such as bodybuilding, yoga and gymnastics. He came to believe that the "modern" life-style, bad posture, and inefficient breathing lay at the roots of poor health.
In 1912 Joseph Pilates came to England, earning a living as a boxer, circus-performer and self-defence trainer and this is where he developed an exercise method called "Contrology", which encouraged the use of the mind to control muscles. It focused its attention on strengthening the deep-set torso muscles, which keep the body balanced and provide a natural corset of support for the spine. He wanted people to work from the inside out. The movements are designed to invigorate and refresh the body rather then tire the body and also improve posture, co-ordination, strength, flexibility and balance as well as to increase breathing capacity.

"I must be right. Never an aspirin. Never injured a day in my life. The whole world should be doing my exercises. They'd be happier"
Joseph Hubertus Pilates in 1965 aged 86