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Twisting and stretching

The picture is from the 1924 “Library of Health”, found in Book XVII Treats of Physical Culture and Body Building: “Twisting and stretching exercises for the trunk of the body.”

Once you begin looking into the health and exercise history of the early 20th century you realize that Contrology is part of a bigger cultural picture, where it sits logically amongst the work of other “physical culturists”. The man pictured here isn’t Joseph Pilates and he’s neither practicing “the Side Kick” nor “the Star”, for “Pilates exercises” didn’t exist then. They were just exercises…


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