Steve: No, Joseph Pilates was not a physiotherapist or physical therapist.
Bill: Why is he so special?
Steve: Because he decided to do something about his own sickness. His own own muscles. He, as a child, he had a parent who was a gymnast. His dad was a strong gymnast. He used some of those principles to help him with his breathing exercises because he suffered from asthma, to help get stronger and stronger. And developed 34 exercises over time to help him get stronger, more stable and breathe better.
Bill: And he also worked on the front lines of World War 1?
Steve: Yes, he did.
Bill: So, he worked with injured soldiers in their beds, rigging up springs and the like to get them to start the rehabilitation when they were ordered to be on bed rest.
Steve: So the mystical story here which most believed to be true is that Joseph was infirmed in England because he was a German soldier at that time. And the ward that he was infirmed in, he put springs on all the beds, almost like the reformer beds. Story goes is that every single person in his ward walked out of that infirmary which couldn’t be said for the other wards.
Bill: Interesting history Joseph Pilates.
Steve: Yes, smart man. He wasn’t a physio. But you know, if you wanted to do something, you’ll do it. And you’ll work out a way.