The Pilates Method

The Pilates Method 2018-09-06T13:56:32+00:00

“Physical fitness can neither be achieved by wishful thinking nor outright purchase” – Joseph Pilates

Health benefits of Pilates include:


  • improved flexibility
  • increased muscle strength and tone, particularly of your abdominal muscles, lower back, hips and buttocks (the ‘core muscles’ of your body)
  • balanced muscular strength on both sides of your body
  • enhanced muscular control of your back and limbs
  • improved stabilisation of your spine
  • improved posture
  • rehabilitation or prevention of injuries related to muscle imbalances
  • improved physical coordination and balance
  • relaxation of your shoulders, neck and upper back
  • safe rehabilitation of joint and spinal injuries
  • prevention of musculoskeletal injuries
  • increased lung capacity and circulation through deep breathing
  • improved concentration
  • increased body awareness
  • stress management and relaxation.

Pilates is an adaptable method

Exercise modification is the key to Pilates success with a variety of populations. All exercises are developed with modifications that can make a workout safe and challenge a person at any level.

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a unique method of body conditioning that integrates muscle control, breathing, flexibility, strength training and body awareness. It helps develop powerful core muscles – in particular the abdomen, back and buttocks – that assist postural alignment and help to keep the body supported and balanced. It is a form of exercise emphasizes the balanced development of the body through core strength, flexibility, and awareness to support efficient, graceful movement. It was developed by Joseph Pilates and is also known as the Pilates Method.

The focus is on precise, controlled movements with the emphasis on quality and form rather than the number of repetitions. The smooth, precise and flowing movements are designed to create greater body awareness. The mental effort and coordinated breathing required will develop your concentration and focus, delivering you a purposeful, mind-body exercise experience.

All exercises are low impact and are performed either on a floor mat or using specially designed Pilates equipment. Pilates is a dynamic workout that builds essential strength and foundation fitness. It’s everything you want in a workout and much more than you’d expect.

Benefits of Pilates

Through Pilates you first purposefully acquire complete control of your own body and then, through proper repetition of its exercises, you gradually and progressively acquire that natural rhythm and coordination associated with all your mental and subconscious activities.  Pilates is designed to give you suppleness, natural grace and skill that will be unmistakably reflected in the way you walk, play and work. You will develop muscular power with corresponding endurance, ability to perform arduous duties, to play strenuous games, to walk, run or travel for long distances without undue body fatigue or mental strain.

The top benefits of doing Pilates exercise include becoming stronger, longer, leaner, and more able to do anything with grace and ease. Enthusiasts talk about getting in shape with Pilates and developing a Pilates body.

The history of Pilates – A unique method of exercise

The Pilates method of exercise is an effective form of strength, conditioning and flexibility training that was developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s. It was originally referred to by Joseph Pilates as ‘centrology’ or ‘contrology’ and used as a rehabilitation program for prisoners of war, but was later found to be of great benefit to anyone seeking a higher level of fitness. The work was kept alive over the years by a small group of Pilates’ devoted students until its popularity blossomed in the past couple of decades. Exercise science caught up with the principles that Pilates had been teaching all along, and now you can enjoy the rich evolution of the Pilates work available today.

Core strength and torso stability, along with the six Pilates principles, set the Pilates method apart from many other types of exercise. Weight lifting, for example, can put a lot of attention on arm or leg strength without attending much to the fact that those parts are connected to the rest of the body. Even running or swimming can seem like all arms and legs, with either a floppy or overly tense core. Ultimately those who really succeed at their sport learn to use their core muscles, but in Pilates, this integrative approach is learned from the beginning.

Who Can Benefit From Pilates?

It seems like everyone is either doing Pilates or is interested in starting a Pilates exercise program. Indeed, one of the best things about the Pilates method is that it works so well for a wide range of people. Athletes and dancers love it, as do ​seniors, women rebounding from pregnancy, and people who at various stages of physical rehabilitation.

A growing number of elite athletes do Pilates as a way of improving coordination, flexibility and technique as well as for prevention and recovery from injuries. Pilates is a safe and effective exercise method that will enable you to look – and feel – your very best.

Increase your fitness at Eastside Pilates under the guidance of our experienced instructors. We provide well-rounded programs that cater to individuals of all fitness levels. Combining affordable prices, high energy classes and personalised attention with small group sizes, we are a great choice for anyone looking to improve their health and wellbeing.

Our studio offers reformer Pilates classes, clinical Pilates classes, mat Pilates, tandem sessions, personal training and private classes.

With our studios located in Toorak Gardens and in the Oakden Medical Centre complex, attending Pilates classes and other fitness sessions has never been easier. Simply take a look at our timetable to find a session that suits you.

Core strength

Core strength is the foundation of Pilates exercise. The core muscles are the deep, internal muscles of the abdomen and back. When the core muscles are strong and doing their job, as they are trained to do in Pilates, they work in tandem with the more superficial muscles of the trunk to support the spine and movement. As you develop your core strength you develop stability throughout your entire torso. This is one of the ways Pilates helps people overcome back pain. As the trunk is properly stabilised, pressure on the back is relieved and the body is able to move freely and efficiently.

The six Pilates principles

These six Pilates principles are centering, control, flow, breath, precision, and concentration. They are essential ingredients in a high-quality Pilates workout as well as being the philosophical foundations of Pilates. The Pilates method has always emphasized quality over quantity, and you will find that, unlike many systems of exercise, Pilates exercises do not include a lot of repetitions for each move. Instead, doing each exercise fully, with precision, yields significant results in a shorter time than one would ever imagine.

Mat work and equipment

Pilates exercises are done on either on a mat on the floor or on exercise equipment developed by Joseph Pilates. The Pilates workout equipment generally utilizes pulleys and resistance from the participant’s own body weight on the machine and graduated levels of springs.

‘The reformer is probably the best-known piece of resistance equipment that you will encounter at a Pilates studio’. – Joseph Pilates

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