Kasey Archer

I often get asked where Pilates came from and what is the best form of Pilates for me. Hopefully the below will give you a better understanding of the type of Pilates that will suit you most  and the history being the method.  Kasey




Matwork Pilates, based on the mat with small equipment will challenge mostly your core and stability. Mat Pilates is a great place to start if you are new to Pilates or recovering from injury as it focuses on fine tuning your form and alignment and achieving the optimal core contraction during strengthening exercises.   At Four Sides London our Mat classes never have more than 6 people so you are ensured to get individualized attention throughout the class. 


Reformer Pilates is the most popular form of Pilates. A reformer is a spring resisted exercise machine used to perform Pilates exercises creating a challenging and intense workout. The Reformer whilst working on your core strength allows you to work the entire body more globally.  Here at Four Sides London our reformer classes are limited to 4 people and taught by trained physiotherapists who create fun, dynamic and effective yet safe classes in which you can achieve your fitness and/or rehab goals. 

Pilates Circuit Class

If you love both reformer and mat Pilates and can’t decide between the two, come join our Pilates Circuit class.  This class combines both mat and reformer work as well as the TRX suspension training system to give you a well rounded workout.   

Four Sides Pilates Intro

At Four Sides London we believe the focus of Pilates is that what counts, its not so much what you do, but rather how you do it. Pilates demands concentration, focus on posture, core muscles and breathing. It’s all about working smarter, not harder and precision is everything.  

This is why all new clients at Four Sides London are asked to complete a 1 hour 1:1 Pilates Intro session before being able to join our classes. Within this session our specialist physiotherapist will take you through a variety of mat and reformer exercises to assess your technique as well as help you determine which are your areas of focus and which classes are best to help you meet your goals.  Following your Intro we then invite you to try one of our classes on us!



The Pilates method, as we know it today, was originally an exercise regime called ‘Contrology.’ Developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s it reflected his belief in the importance of the mind’s control over the body.  For Joseph Pilates, the health of mind and body are inextricably linked

 “Physical fitness is the first requisite of happiness"


Born in Germany Joseph Pilates used regular exercise to overcome ailments through his childhood and trained to become an accomplished boxer, gymnast and skier. His personal exercise experience and his interest in the classical Greek ideal of a man; one balanced in body, mind and spirit inspired him to create his own method. During the first world war Joseph Pilates spent time in England and refined his exercise method training his fellow internees. He attached springs to hospital beds to allow bedridden patients to exercise with resistance, inspiring his later design of the Pilates Reformer and Cadillac.  


Following the war Joseph Pilates immigrated to the United States and opened a body conditioning studio in New York City with his wife Clara. Due to the studio’s close proximity to New York City Ballet the method quickly became popular with famous dancers and spread to wide popularity across the country.  Pilates was not officially known as Pilates until after Joseph Pilates’ death in 1967 and did not make its return to the U.K. until the 1970s after Alan Herdman, a dancer with London Contemporary, studied the technique in New York and returned to open the first Pilates studio in London. 


Pilates has evolved over time to keep up with sports medicine knowledge and has been widely accepted by physiotherapists around the world as an excellent tool for improving strength, balance, flexibility and coordination. Here at Four Sides London we use Pilates as a key tool for rehabilitation