Joseph Hubertus Pilates

The main objective of Pilates is to harmonize body and soul so that movement is efficient, balanced and graceful.

–  Born 1883 in Moenchengladbach near Dusseldorf.
–  Ravaged by asthma and rickets during his childhood. Overcame his physical weakness with specific training. Physical fitness became his passion in life.
Travelled to England as a boxer in 1912.
Captured in World War I and trained his fellow prisoners. During that time he developed the full body training 'Contrology'.
Travelled to the USA in 1926 and opened his first Pilates studio with his wife Clara in New York.
Worked with celebrities such as George Balanchine and his dancers from the New York town centre as well as Martha Graham and Jerome Robbins. Pilates soon achieved national recognition and Joseph perfected his method by integrating elements from yoga, acrobatics, martial arts and classical ballet.
Joseph H. Pilates died 1967 at the age of 84.

Romana Kryzanowska, a former student of Joseph H. Pilates took over his studio after he passed away. The first generation of instructors was called “the elders”. Romana taught Pilates to Bob Liekens among others, who then designed her training program and soon after enjoyed a high reputation.