Joseph Pilates, who called his system of exercise “Contrology,” developed a complex system of mind and body conditioning that made use bodyweight exercises done on a mat, and also exercises he developed to be done on several pieces of equipment designed by him. Each piece of equipment has a unique relationship with the rest of the system and with the learner. While one piece of equipment might be ideal for re-educating posture more globally, another might focus on the entire body’s reaction to the movements of the foot, while another might emphasize orientation of the body in sitting or while climbing. Pilates even taught suspension training decades ago, and partial inversions appropriate for all points on the fitness spectrum, from the post-rehabilitative client to the very strong athlete. The utter brilliance of the system lies in its adaptability to each person’s unique needs. Its adjustability allows completely different bodies to use the same piece of equipment to accomplish very different objectives.
The genius of the method developed by Mr. Pilates nearly died with him, but it was kept alive by a few of his disciples in the United States. Thanks to these first generation teachers, “Contrology” survived under the name “Pilates.” During the 1990’s the popularity of Pilates surged, in part due to its ability to help people take control of their bodies in a way that the fitness fads of that time had failed to do. However, because of the complexity of the system and the cost of the equipment involved, the training requisite for its proper use and the expense of housing the equipment, this system was often reproduced in a partial form: the exercises done on the mat. While it is true that Mr. Pilates considered the work done on the mat to contain the full expression his work, alone it does not include the building blocks that the systematically re-educate the different relationships in the body. Essentially, an industry flourished worldwide that was based on the reputation of the complex system but in most cases it delivered only a sliver of that system flourished. We believe that the work of Mr. Pilates deserves to be taught in its full form, on all pieces of equipment and we offer that education. When we say “comprehensive training” we include the mat work and training on the following equipment as well:
Course Breakdown for Fully Comprehensive Training Course
Five three-day blocks (potentially weekends)
A total of 100 guided hours on the course itself
Attendance at 20 apprentice meetings of 1.5 hours each
450-600 hours of apprenticeship hours prior to final exam
Exams at 200 hours, 450 hours, 600 hours and final exam