This is the legend of Pilates as it was told to me by the grande dame of Pilates, Romana Kryzanowska. I’ve heard rumors that the story may be embellished a bit, but doesn’t that happen to all good stories? We love ’em so much, that we’re tempted to make them a teeny bit better. I like to think that in any embellishment is at least a seed of truth…
Suffice it to say, the method is named after a real person, Joseph Pilates, who passed away in 1967. He taught us great things and we’re still using his wonderful machines.
Have you ever played The 6 Degrees of Separation? The idea is that you can connect to almost anyone in 6 steps. If you’re training with me, you’re now 3 degrees of separation from…Joe Pilates.
- You to me = 1 degree
- Me to Romana Kryzanowska = 2nd degree. Yes, the grande dame of Pilates personally taught me how to teach Pilates in the 1990’s! After a three-year apprenticeship, she gave me her blessing to teach the complete repertoire of Pilates exercises as handed to her from Joe himself. I’ve since gone on to study with Pilates Elders Ron Fletcher, Mary Bowen and Kathy Grant, as well as several renowned physical therapists who use Pilates as their primary rehabilitation technique.
- Romana Kryzanowska to Joe Pilates = 1st degree Yup, Ron Fletcher, Mary Bowen and Kathy Grant are also 1 degree of separation from Joe — they’re all known as “1st Generation teachers.”