This book represents the first major publication in 1934 by Joseph H. Pilates and includes his early Twentieth Century philosophies, principles, and theories about health and fitness. He bases his work on the concept of a balanced Body and Mind, drawing on the approach espoused by the early Greeks. While some of his personal philosophies reflected early 20th Century viewpoints, his athletic and fitness doctrines were years ahead of his time.
Joseph Pilates has been nothing short of revolutionary in his impact on the world of fitness and exercise. You will learn in this book his observations and conclusions about people’s approach to physical fitness. He describes the results of decades of scientific study, experimentation and research into the variety of troubles and ills that upset the balance of body and mind.
Pilates makes extraordinary claims about the benefits of his defined science of "Contrology" and very specifically defines this science for all to read and understand. He was living testimony to the validity of his own teachings. In this book, he exemplifies and clarifies the beneficial impact of his work.
In this book, you will learn Joseph Pilates’ fundamental tenets of posture, body mechanics, and correct breathing. You will discover his first teachings about spinal flexibility, physical education, and his law of natural exercises. It is a fascinating look into Pilates’ original thinking and analysis and represents the foundation of an entire discipline embraced by fitness enthusiasts, health educators, and exercise trainers around the world.
"...the millions of dollars today foolishly expended in the purchase and maintenance of gymnasium equipment, etc., could be more wisely expended for the purpose of training teachers, living examples of normal health, not mere preachers of what normal health (if they really knew) should be."
Chapter 2 - page 17 - Photographs
"Here we see the correct and incorrect way to stand. Note the posture in each. On top we see three poses, front, side and back. Note the perfect body. Below we have the author posing first, in (A) the Macfadden Hollow Back incorrect posture; (B) the average incorrect posture of an athlete who is broad-shouldered and muscle-bound; (C) the usual position of ninety-five percent of persons, showing protruded stomach (and double curvature of the spine in both lumbar region and the neck."
Chapter 3 - page 20
"...What is balance of body and mind?
It is the conscious control of all muscular movements of the body. It is the correct utilization and application of the leverage principles afforded by the bones comprising the skeletal framework of the body, a complete knowledge of the mechanism of the body, and a full understanding of the principles of equilibrium and gravity as applied to the movements of the body in motion, at rest and in sleep."
Chapter 4 - page 24
"...Man should bear in mind and ponder over the Greek admonition - Not Too Much, Not Too Little."
Chapter 5 - page 29
"However, in order that one may receive the maximum benefit and resulting normal health from one's daily activities, one should understand at least some of the more rudimentary underlying principles governing the mechanism of the human body in motion, rest and sleep. For example, the leverage possibilities of the bones composing its skeletal framework, the range and limitation of proper muscle tension and relaxation, the laws of equilibrium and gravity, and last but not least, how to inhale and exhale; i. e., how to breathe properly - normally. A knowledge of these are essential if we are to benefit from any exercises."
Chapter 8 - page 43
"The first lesson is that of correct breathing. Children must be taught how to take long, deep breaths, sufficient to expand the upper chest to capacity. They must be properly instructed how to draw the abdomen in and out at the same time holding their breath for a short time. Then they should also learn how properly to fully deflate the lungs in exhaling."