What is Pilates?

Pilates is a body conditioning method that works in a different way to other fitness techniques- by building strength from the inside out, rebalancing the body and bringing it to correct alignment. 

It was developed in early 20th century by Joseph Pilates and originally called Contrology. The program focuses on educating the deep postural muscles, which help to keep the body balanced and are essential to provide support for the spine. In particular, Pilates exercises teach awareness of breath, alignment of the spine, muscle control and flexibility- all of which are very important in helping to alleviate and prevent back pain.


"In our classes we use various equipment to assist you on your journey, such as foam rollers, fitness circles, balls, resistance bands, rotator discs, sitfits and wobble boards... although not all in one session."

What makes our Pilates classes different?

Our classes are adapted from the ‘classical’ exercises developed by Joseph Pilates. We believe that many of these classical exercises are often not suitable for the average person and the average body.

In order for someone to work safely and effectively and to gain the full benefits of Pilates, these classical exercises are broken down to establish good movement skills thus building the best possible foundation upon which to progress towards the classical, more advanced matwork.

  • CLASS SIZE IS LIMITED TO 6-8 PEOPLE - This enables us to give you the attention you need to help you work towards your goals.

" In 10 sessions you will feel the difference in 20, you will see the difference and in 30, you will be on your way having a whole new body." - Joseph Pilates

Some lovely things people have said...

"We've been part of the Pilates first studios family for 4 years now.

I started a beginners class with my friends and when I noticed the benefits the class was having on me I recommended it to my husband Steve. Once he started the classes he was a convert. Our son Samuel is disabled and reliant on us to do everything for him including lifting him. It's essential that we keep our bodies in good condition for him and ourselves. We both suffered from chronic back pain. 

These classes have been a lifeline for keeping us fit and healthy and there are enough classes so that we can both attend at different times. 

When I use the word family I don't use it lightly. There is no competition here, everyone is friendly and there are classes to suit all levels. All the instructors are really lovely, helpful and knowledgeable. 

They ask what your individual concerns are at the start of each class and as classes are kept small  they are able to keep a close eye on you making adjustments to make sure you get the maximum fitness effect. 

For Steve and I the result is a strong core, fitness, toning and best of all no back pain.  Steve and I can't recommend the studios highly enough. Thanks Pilates first!!" - Steve and Tracey Jones


"I love my life and as I get older want to be in the best possible health to appreciate our wonderful world. I make no secret of my love of Pilates and how this helps me and have encouraged several family members and friends to practice it. 

Pilates First is amazing, with the small, friendly classes giving personal attention. I really feel that the teachers know my body and can individually guide me.

From someone who as a teenager, couldn’t touch her toes and was pronounced by my school teacher as too unfit to join the rest of the class climbing a mountain, increasing my muscle strength and flexibility has given me the confidence to undertake a long distance charity walk, climb that mountain and look forward to the best of what life has to offer" ~Jacqui Mcall


"Being a yoga teacher I Had tried Pilates a few times but never enjoyed nor felt its benefits. After the birth of my son I started regular post natal Pilates sessions with Maiwenn,can honestly say from the first session I was amazed at the way I felt during class I was using muscles I never knew how to work...to say I was hooked is an understatement! The results I have gained from combining Pilates to my regular yoga routine have been remarkable!!! Maiwenn explains each exercise in such detail,but in a fun way that's easy to understand even if not familiar with the body....thanks to Pilates I have a stronger core after baby than I did before,I actually have stomach muscles which I've never had!  I can't reccomend Pilates and maiwenns teaching highly enough,she has transformed my body and has helped improve my yoga practice...I am forever grateful to have found such an excellent teacher."  - Andrea Gatrill


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"I first damaged a tendon in my lower back 30 years ago and have had pain on and off ever since. About 5 years ago, after trying most other things, I decided to give Pilates a go and it's honestly the best thing I ever did. The teachers are all very knowledgeable and the small classes enable them to keep a close eye on what the class is doing and sometimes give us such a small 'tweak', that you wouldn't think was noticeable, but makes all the difference to whether the exercise is being done correctly or not. At the time you might think you're not doing very much, just having a good stretch and keeping flexible, but the next day you feel muscles you haven't felt in a long time and know you've worked even after several years of classes. I've never stuck with any form of exercise for very long (too hard, too boring or just too much effort!) but If I have to miss a Pilates class my body really notices it and I can't wait to get back to it! I thoroughly recommend Body Control Pilates with Pilates First Studio". - Manuella Croft


"I have been coming to Pilates for over 8 years now. I have had several teachers over the years: Denyse, Kadi, Maiwenn and now Jane. I can honestly say that they all have a very high standard of Pilates teaching and knowledge of the body. I practised Pilates all the way through both my pregnancies and I am convinced that Pilates respiratory techniques helped me while giving birth. It also helped getting my figure back afterwards. The class size is small (6 people), which allows the teacher to check everyone's posture and tweak the lesson to suit everyone's aches and pains. I even got my other half to join a class to help with his tennis playing.” - Elizabeth Morice