Joseph Pilates made confident and bold claims about his method of training ones body and mind. He called it contrology for good reason, you are literally learning to control your body, and as he says "our muscles should obey our will. Reasonably, our will should not be dominated by the reflex actions of our muscles."
Through learning to control ones body, he claimed you would develop the body uniformly, correct wrong postures, restore physical vitality, invigorate the mind, work with minimal effort and maximum pleasure, stay physically young, create suppleness and natural grace, poise and skill and a renewed interest in life. If you've ever read his book or seen videos of him teaching he was extremely confident in his claims. How can one thing do so much for our bodies?
You may have heard one of his more well-known claims, "in ten sessions you will feel the difference, in twenty sessions you will see the difference, in thirty sessions you will have a whole new body." In the Pilates world today, this very specific and bold claim is often brushed over with comments of every body being different, and certain injuries and limitations getting in the way. And yet in reading thoroughly and practicing Joseph's clearly spelled out guidelines, I do not see any such disclaimer. His method is flawless, truly. Yet, today it has various translations from classical, to west coast, to contemporary to Stott, all claiming to be even better than Contrology. Herein lies the problem, control of your body needs to be learned by controlling your body. It is an experience. His book was written for anyone to gain a personal understanding of their own body with the advantage of his countless hours of introspection and self-mastery. It is that experience that is lacking in both the professional world and the consumer world of Pilates. How can a teacher give the experience of Pilates to a client if they have not experienced the power of contrology? And if a teacher is giving the client Contrology, the client knows how to use their body both in and out of the studio. They have learned something, not just done a routine, or certain movements, or an order of movements, or used a machine. They have woken up to the ability they have within themselves to master their own body.
As a teacher of Pilates for many years, I know these differences are true from my own experience. When I began teaching I was not fully able to deliver all of Joseph's claims with my clients. I wasn't providing the client with the experience and knowledge they needed to progress beyond the studio. I'm eternally grateful for being woken up to the harsh reality that I continued doing the same thing, expecting different results. Today, I confidently claim these bold results happen every single day in our studio. I am thankful for the genius of Joseph Pilates and the joy his work brings to my life, both personally and professionally. And excited to be a conduit to further the spreading of a body of work worth becoming the gold standard of physical health. If you've done a form of Pilates and have not achieved these amazing benefits, give the Contrology way (we call it GroundPower) a try, it is an experience your body will thank you for, for the rest of your life, come see for yourself.