Pilates is a specific system of exercises. It is named after its founder Joseph Pilates, who began to develop his ideas in a World War I prisoner of war camp while helping injured prisoners to recover from war injuries. He then moved to New York in the 1920’s, where he set up a studio. In the early days his exercises were embraced by the dance world, who found the movements strengthened and enhanced performance. In the event of an injury, Plates exercises also maintained strength and assisted with rehabilitation. More recently, physiotherapists have embraced Pilates because it provides core stability and specific strength needed by so many of our clients experiencing persistent back pain. The programme includes up to 250 exercises, focussing on the use of the deep abdominal muscles, accurate breathing and good posture. The exercises can be very gentle and doesn’t aggravate the pain. For clients with acute and sub-acute pain, we use exercises that activate the deep stomach and back musculature to develop strength and control around their weakened spinal segments. The exercises at the other end of the spectrum are designed to be very challenging, requiring a very high level of core stability. These are excellent for elite athletes to provide that edge over the opposition or to sharpen up slightly weak core stabilisers. Exercises for elite sports people have a sports specific slant, where we design exercises with the challenges of the sport in mind. Exercises for dance professionals and students have a dance specific slant where we design exercises with the demands of dance technique in mind. Kay Allardyce runs our Pilates classes that included one-to-one, at an affordable price of just £50 per hour, or 4 to-one classes where you get the individual care in a group class, at just £15 per hour.