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Stott Pilates: Essential Matwork
(Merrithew)
2001

What is it?
An hour-long introduction to the basics of Pilates matwork by Moira Stott-Merithew.
Who is it for?
People who have had very little or no exposure to Pilates - or those who have tried Pilates videos by other instructors and found them wanting.
What to expect:
This video - along with Intermediate Matwork and Advanced Matwork - are updated versions of the Stott tapes from a few years back, and they're a great improvement over the originals. Stott-Merithew has rearranged the exercises so that all the muscle groups that make up the core, or powerhouse, are given balanced attention. In addition, Stott-Merithew has gained a certain amount of poise in front of the camera that she didn't have before. While she's not the most electrifying presence in the fitness industry, her thorough instruction makes up for that (and when it comes to Pilates, you definitely want detail over charisma). Stott-Merithew covers 45 basic exercises, from the Hundred to the Teaser, with a strong emphasis on form and breathing. You will be hard-pressed to find a better instructional video -- which isn't to say that it replaces an actual Pilates class. No video can do that. But if there aren't any classes in your area, or if you're starting out and want some coaching during your at-home practice, this video will definitely do the trick.

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