Pilates, a method of exercise and physical movement designed to stretch, strengthen, and balance the body. With systematic practice of specific exercises coupled with focused breathing patterns, Pilates has proven itself invaluable not only as a fitness endeavor itself, but also as an important adjunct to professional sports training and physical rehabilitation of all kinds.
Pilates is widely embraced among dancers for years, the exercises--"elephant," "swan", the language--"pull navel to spine, and breeaaaathe," and the look--bright-eyed, refreshed, buoyant-without-necessarily-sweating, is popping up in fitness classes, physical therapy offices, corporate retreats, luxury spas and wellness centers across the country.
Another fad? A cult for the over-privileged? Think again. With the aging of our population and the increasing trend toward mindful, moderate health practices, Pilates is more likely to find itself with a wait list at the YMCA, and in your local public schools--shaping the fitness ideals of our next generation.