You may already be aware that I am a big fan of Pilates…and especially its founder, Joseph Pilates. Literally a freak of nature, Joseph Pilates was a circus performer, bodybuilder, professional boxer and self defense trainer. Born in Germany, he moved to England in 1912 to box and teach self defense at police schools. When Britain entered World War I, British authorities sent Pilates and his fellow German colleagues to an internment camp (aka war prison) as enemy aliens, where he continued to study the body through his work with the other inmates. It was here that Pilates really advanced his body of work, rigging springs to hospital beds and creating all kinds of contraptions so that even bedridden inmates could rehabilitate and strengthen their bodies and thus, their immunity. Incredibly, none of his students succumbed to the 1918 influenza outbreak that took many lives around the world, especially those living in close quarters such as inmates of internment camps.
Joseph Pilates’ obsession with health began early in life. He suffered from asthma, rickets and rheumatic fever. His father was an award winning gymnast and his mother a naturopath of sorts. So it only seemed natural that he obsessively studied anatomy, body conditioning and animals in the wild (okay, thats a little weird, but ironically forward-thinking nonetheless) as a means of restoring his health. He became completely obsessed with building both physical and mental strength, believing that modern lifestyle, poor posture and poor breathing were responsible for illness. The Pilates method of physical exercise incorporates attention to breath work, stretching and strengthening.
Lastly, and of utmost importance, Pilates had quite the figure well into his 80s. Nothing tones your core like the Pilates method and of course, a good poop…
I’m all about doing shit at home! Please join me at Power House Pilates just down the hallway from the Doody Free shop at the Brunswick Center on Sunday, April 30th for a two hour workshop beginning at 11am. There will be Pilates, poop and libations. It’s only $25 and filling up fast! You will leave with a simple, effective routine you can do at home, my favorite enema bag and a fun buzz…email me for bookings 🙂