You may well have noticed that there are now a wide variety of Pilates classes available. All Pilates is based on the exercise regime that Joseph Pilate’s developed in the mid 1900’s.
Classical Pilates looks to preserve what Joseph taught in its purest form – closely following the original movements that he devised.
Contemporary Pilates has the advantage (in our view) of continually updating the original form of Pilates with advances in medical, anatomical and physiological knowledge.
Clinical Pilates could be considered a subset of Contemporary Pilates – and this is the form of Pilates taught and promoted by the APPI (Australian Physiotherapy and Pilates Institute). There is a strong focus on current research, particularly with regard to stabilisation muscles and their relationship with back pain.
The APPI was founded by 2 physios – one a dancer and the other a triathlete. They took the “classical” repertoire of exercises and broke them down, modified them, and made them suitable for everyone – including those in need of rehabilitation. There is a strong focus on “neutral” positioning of the spine and pelvis, along with low level sustainable activation of the deep postural muscles. The aim being that what you learn in class you transfer (consciously and subconsciously!) straight into all your everyday activities.
(This neutral alignment is key for horse riders - being essential for optimal shock absorption and stability with out “stiffness” whilst in the saddle).
Classes are kept purposely small (maximum 12 persons) so that you receive plenty of individual input. “How” you are positioned and perform the movements is vitally important and is crucial to the results you feel and see, there is always room for improvement and as you develop you will find yourself able to build and refine your repertoire more and more.