Joseph Pilates and the STOTT PILATES Method

Pilates is an exercise system that was developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 1900s. Placed under forced internment along with other German nationals during World War I, Pilates spent this time teaching other camp members the concepts and exercises he had learned through yoga, Zen and ancient Greek and Roman physical regimens.

Joseph Pilates assists student in a pilates barrel position

Joseph Pilates

Considered revolutionary by many, Pilates incorporated important principles of breath, control, fluidity and accuracy of movement.

During this time, he also began devising specialized equipment by attaching springs to hospital beds to create resistance exercises for bedridden patients.

In 1920, Pilates moved to New York City and opened his own studio that was widely used by dancers, boxers and other professional athletes.

After his death in 1967, the Pilates technique began spreading across the country and became recognized as an important exercise system that could be used by anyone who wants to improve his or her health and fitness, from elite athletes to those rehabiliating from injuries.

The instructors at Pacific Northwest Pilates are certified to teach STOTT PILATES. Developed by former professional dancer Moira Merrithew, Executive Director of Education, together with President and CEO of Merrithew Health & Fitness™, Lindsay G. Merrithew, STOTT PILATES combines input from sports medicine professionals and is a contemporary, anatomically-based approach to Joseph Pilates’ original exercise method.

STOTT PILATES builds upon Joseph Pilates’ vision by incorporating the latest medical research, modern exercise principles and contemporary thinking about spinal rehabilitation and performance enhancement. For example, the original Pilates approach promoted a flat back, but STOTT PILATES exercises are designed to restore the natural curves of the spine and re-balance muscles around the joints.

STOTT PILATES International (based in Toronto, Canada) requires instructors of this method to complete a rigorous curriculum, which includes use of a variety of specialized equipment, before they can become certified as teachers. Certification is dependent upon written and physical exams along with hours of practical application. Additionally, all STOTT PILATES teachers must complete continuing education credits each year to maintain certification status.