16 A, Ring Road, Lajpat Nagar - IV, New Delhi​

"Pilates is a system of exercises originally called "Contrology" (the art of control). It focuses on developing a strong, stable core with well-toned and flexible muscles to help improve posture, ease of movement and proper body mechanics."

- Joseph Pilates


Pilates is a system of exercises originally called “Contrology” (the art of control) by Joseph Pilates. It focuses on developing a strong, stable core with well-toned and flexible muscles to help improve posture, ease of movement and proper body mechanics. There are many different schools of thought on Pilates. Some schools lean toward a more contemporary approach blending it with other types of exercise, while others treat it as rehabilitation for a specific problem. Classical Pilates stays as close as possible to the original intention of the man himself – mind control over muscle control. While it does enhance other forms of exercise and has a rehabilitative effect on the body, the focus is on the method. The beauty is in its simplicity. Whether you are nine or ninety-nine years old, work in an office or are an athlete, injured or healthy, you begin with mat work either in a group class or as part of your private session, modified as per your requirements. In a private session, once you are warmed up, you visit each apparatus – Reformer, Cadillac and Wunda Chair – progressing from horizontal exercises to vertical which creates an anti-gravity effect. After a few basic sessions, the instructor adds new exercises based on individual needs to create a personalised programme.

Cadillacs, Reformers and Wunda Chairs

The Cadillac originated from a bed with bedsprings attached to the wall at the head of the bed, for arm and leg exercises. During WWI, Joe worked with injured soldiers creating Cadillac exercises they could perform while recovering in their beds. Now, the Cadillac is an elevated mat with arm and leg springs attached to one side, the push-through bar with attaching springs on the opposite side and a canopy above for various hanging exercises.

Originally called the Universal Reformer, this apparatus was the last to be designed because of its complexity. It is like a moving Cadillac. The mat glides on a horizontal track attached to the base with spring resistance. There is the footbar at the base to push away from against the tension of the springs. On the way back, the eccentric control mimics the gravitational pull when standing. Straps connect to the top of the mat so that arms and legs pulling on them work against the desired spring resistance. Joseph Pilates designed this apparatus so that the client could use the resistance of the equipment rather than the teacher’s, thus taking ownership of their own workout.

The Wunda Chair was also known as “the Home Reformer” because it took up much less space in one’s tiny New York City apartment. It has a smaller mat platform on top with a pedal below with spring resistance. Its size requires more precise movement and balance, making it a challenge for the intermediate client. For beginners, a backboard and handles are added for support. Add a pillow and turn it on its side, it could be disguised as a living room chair.

How is Pilates different from other forms of exercise?

Because you begin the session lying down, gravity assists you by bringing the abdominal muscles toward the spine. The mat gives you a reference point to feel the alignment of your spine. Exercises are performed moving proximal to distal to challenge the stabilization of that alignment, first lying down, then seated and finally standing. Although the focus is on getting a workout, the concentration involved in controlling the body in its optimal alignment also has a naturally therapeutic effect for clients with all sorts of ailments or conditions including heart conditions, orthopedic pain, pre -and post-surgery and even pregnancy. As with any ailment, it’s always best to consult your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.

How do I begin?

If you are injury-free and new to Pilates, introduction to Pilates Mat is a great way to start. It is a group class which focuses on the fundamentals of the Pilates technique. Open mat class is for those wishing to progress to the next level. Private sessions are also available if you prefer to get a work out on each piece of equipment. Private sessions are also recommended if you have an ailment so that the instructor can modify exercises to suit your specific needs. So, put on your workout clothes and we will see you in the studio!