When we talk about Pilates Contrology, we mean good posture can be achieved only when the body is under perfect control. When doing the exercises, aim for slow, studied movements, and allow them to flow from start to finish to form a continuous sequence. Continue in this way until you have completed the total number of repetitions.

Based on a Science Direct Research; Pilates exercise improves muscular strength, balance, posture; flexibility, bone density, and decrease back pain. The development of musculoskeletal fitness with long term resistance training is associated with enhanced cardiovascular function and musculoskeletal metabolism.

In Pilates Workouts; working with the weight of your body against the natural pull of gravity requires considerable control. In fact we are all accustomed to controlling our bodies: the process of walking is not a haphazard series of movements, but rather a controlled sequence that we have learned from childhood. However, many of us, quite unconsciously, developed bad habits in the way that we move that may later affect our physical health.

Pilates Contrology Routines

Pilates Contrology Routines

Pilates provides complete coordination of body, mind and spirit. Pilates Contrology means ensuring that the body moves with purpose and direction at all times. A controlled movement involves making the relevant muscles and joints work to their full capacity while at the same time not wasting any energy. This concept is integral to the philosophy of Pilates.

Joseph Pilates said:

The art of Contrology [Pilates] proves that the only real guide to your true age lies not in years or how you THINK you feel but as you ACTUALLY are as infallibly indicated by the degree of natural and normal flexibility enjoyed by your spine throughout life. If your spine is inflexibly stiff at 30, you are old; if it is completely flexible at 60, you are young!

Pilates Contrology exercises strengthen the body, and the slower and more controlled the movements, the greater the strength you gain from them.

4 Control Tips To Getting The Most Out Of Your Pilates Workout


The use of visual associations can be effective when working with Pilates. Visualization can help you understand how to control your movements and also how to gain the most from your workouts. For example, I have already noted that Pilates exercises need to be continuous, to flow from one stage to another freely, without interruption.

So, if you are trying a new movement, it might be helpful to think, as you begin, of a Ferris wheel at a fairground—the wheel turning slowly and deliberately. Or think of a tightrope walker at the circus. In order to stay on the rope she has to maintain perfect control of her body, to move slowly and deliberately from one end of the rope to the other. Such visualizations are used throughout this book to give you deeper insight into how each exercise should feel.

The powerhouse

In disciplines such as tai chi, it is believed that the powerhouse is the store of the chi, or life energy. With physical movements, the energy is generated from the powerhouse, then carried to the relevant part of the body to give it power.

Pilates Contrology Self-Practing Routines

Pilates Contrology Self-Practing Routines


This is equivalent to the core or center in Pilates.

Graceful control

When practicing Pilates, make every movement as smooth and graceful as you can. To use a visualization, imagine that you are a dancer performing a movement on a stage in front of an audience you want to impress with your grace and poise. Think, too, about even- part of your body as you move. Does each part have an important role in the execution of the movement, and are both sides of your body working at the same level? If not re-balance yourself so that each part has an equal role.

Full range Pilates Contrology

This type of movement can be applied to other forms of exercise with much success: try using resistance machines or free weights in the gym with slow, steady, and even movements. You will be able to feel the difference and the exercises will prove more effective (you may have to use a lighter weight).

Full range Pilates Contrology

Full range Pilates Contrology

It is also vitally important to ensure that you are using your full range of movement. Check that you are working equally hard, with the same intensity and resistance throughout. As much effort should be used to extend a muscle (eccentric movement) as to contract it (concentric movement). By working in this way, you will begin to develop strength and flexibility in equal measure, giving your muscles (and your body) a long, lean look.


  • Joseph Pilates, Judd Robbins (2012); Pilates’ Return to Life Through Pilates Contrology.