Joseph Pilates, a.k.a. the father of Pilates, proved that you could exercise and be strong no matter where you were. Joseph struggled with asthma in his youth, and in an effort to battle his disease, he turned to exercise. (Go figure right?) In 1912 he was imprisoned as an enemy alien in England (he was German). While he was imprisoned he used various forms of exercise in order to strengthen his core and help other “bedridden patients” to remain healthy during their internment. When influenza swept through England in 1918 killing thousands of people, the patients he worked with survived.
In 1926, Joseph Pilates came to the United States. He opened a dance studio with his wife and since that time Pilates has hence been a core strengthening exercise that has really grown in popularity over the past 20 years.
If Joseph Pilates could strengthen his body while he was in prison, what’s your excuse? 😉 Most Pilates exercises require a minimal amount of room, really only the space you need to lay down in. A lot of the exercises may seem easy when you look at them, but trust me, if you try them (and do it correctly) you will feel it the next day.
I was introduced to Pilates when I was in college taking a modern dance class. (Anyone who knows me, knows that is probably the silliest thing I’ve ever done. If it hadn’t been for the tests on the history of modern dance, I certainly would have failed. I was terrible at the movement exams.) Our instructor was amazing! She taught us about dance, she taught us how to dance (or at least tried in my case) and had us try Pilates at the beginning of each class. I loved it! I could feel the difference and I was sore. I soon purchased VHS tapes of Pilates workouts. (VHS tapes… hah!) I remember my dad chuckling over what I was doing on the living-room floor. He thought it looked easy … until he tried! Yup, picture me home on a break with my dad trying to do the One Hundreds on the floor. He quickly decided it wasn’t that easy. I also remember trying out these videos with my great friend Teresa. We were working on keeping it toned!
Pilates is an exercise you can do anytime and anywhere. I do advise using a video or going to a class when you first begin. They tell you how to focus on a lot of important aspects, such as breathing or posture, which really contribute to the effectiveness of the exercise.
Today, I love following Cassey Ho’s Pop Pilates Vlogs on YouTube. They are awesome! She has a video for every body part and they are available in so many different increments of time. You can work your belly for 5 or 20 minutes. You can complete a full body workout or just focus on your butt. I’ve been following her on YouTube for close to five years (especially around honeymoon time and since pregnancy: Pilates are great for mommy tummies!). I love discovering her new videos or challenges. She is always peppy, motivating and she gives my abs the burn I crave. (I’m actually sore from yesterday’s little workout.)
Love this one!!! I do the elegant candlestick without the video from time to time. It’s so easy to do on your own once you get the hang of it.
So if you’re looking for an excellent way to challenge yourself, strengthen your core, build stability, work on mommy tummy, and/or look good in your bikini this summer, then I totally recommend trying one of her videos! It’s free, it will be fun, and you will feel it the next day. I hope you’ll enjoy them!
This is the one I did Wednesday morning!
There are so many more, these are just two I really like. I hope you’ll try one and share your results in the comments below. If you are nervous about trying this, start with a beginner video. You’ll feel great! Promise ❤
I’ve posted some links to Cassey’s products below, but her videos are always free. So take advantage! 🙂
This one would go along with my making water fun blog!