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Fundamentals of Pilates

Updated: Jun 25, 2020

The work of Joseph Pilates is based on these principles;


“Breathing is the first act of life, and the last. Our very life depends on it.” Joseph Pilates

Breathing is maybe the most important of Pilate’s fundamentals. In order to gain the most benefit from Pilates exercises it is important to breathe effectively and efficiently. We want to create full deep breathes, expanding laterally into the rib-cage. This will enable us to keep the deep abdominals engaged, and get as much oxygen around the body as efficiently as possible.

In Pilates, we emphasise the breath, exhaling on the effort. By breathing out on the movement you will be able to relax into the stretch and avoid tensing as you work through the exercise. Exhalation also provides greater core stability during the most difficult part of the exercise movement.


Centering represents the act of drawing your own mental and physical focus to the core during each exercise. In Pilates we believe all movement comes from the core powerhouse, and we aim to strengthen the muscles of the Transversus abdominis, pelvic floor and lumbar multifidus to name a few.


The art of being able to bring mind and body together. Simply concentrate on the specific details of each exercise will enable you to keep performing the exercises correctly to keep the full vital benefits of their value.


Controlling the movements requires your mind to direct and manage each separate muscular movement. Each movement should be under complete control, focusing on quality over quantity, thus reducing risk of injury and balancing weaker parts of the body.


All movement should be performed in a flowing continuous way. This requires control through the concentric and eccentric phases, and connects the body smoothly.


Correct alignment of the body is crucial and we must keep a conscious awareness of precision through each movement.

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