You may have tried Pilates before, and you may be a regular at our daily classes in Huntington Beach, but how much do you know about the origin of Pilates? You know how beneficial it is for your body, but understanding its history can make you appreciate the exercise form even more. At SweatHB, we want to help people achieve their fitness goals, and that can be accomplished by building off what’s been done before, as well as by studying those who have come before, like Joseph Pilates.

The Man Who Created Pilates

Joseph Pilates was born near Dusseldorf, Germany in 1883, and after battling sickness as a child, he took up bodybuilding and regular exercise to make himself stronger and healthier. He was very interested in the classical exercise routines of the Greeks and Romans, and along with Western practices, he studied Eastern disciplines such as tai chi and yoga.

When he was in his 30s, Pilates left Germany for Britain and became a skier, diver, and professional boxer. He also worked as an acrobat for a short time. Unfortunately, during World War I, he was interned in Britain, however he used this time to begin developing his own exercise program, combining what he already knew with what he learned while working as a nurse during his internment.

In 1923, Pilates set sail for America, and after meeting his wife Clara on the trip, he established his first exercise studio in New York City. Pilates called his innovative system “Contrology,” but of course, today it is known by the name of the man who revolutionized how people work out and get in shape.

If you’re interested in signing up for one of our Pilates classes in Huntington Beach, contact us today!