Basic Principles

Different Pilates schools have different sets of guiding principles. Joseph Pilates himself used six. I prefer to start with these three, which are easy as easy to remember as ABC, they are:

Joseph Pilates used six:

  • Precision
  • Breathing
  • Centring
  • Control
  • Coordination
  • Flowing Movements

He did not mention alignment, but I like to think this is covered within the principle of precision. The instructions in his book Return to Life through Contrology are certainly precise, as are his directions that they are to be followed faithfully to acquire physical fitness.

…exercises that produce a harmonious structure we term physical fitness reflecting itself in a coordinated and balanced tri-part unity of mind, body and spirit.

Joseph Pilates

I certainly agree that it is critical to perform Pilates exercises with correct technique in order to gain the benefits of doing them.