Pilates is a method of body conditioning based on using positioning and gravity to work the muscles. The workouts focus first on developing strength through the core of the body -- the back, abdomen and hips. This provides a foundation to continue working the rest of the body. The concentration is not only on strength but also flexibility and coordination. The goal of Pilates is overall body fitness, elongated supple muscles, and balance between body and mind, with all the parts of a person working as a whole. Pilates gives practitioners improved posture, increased lung capacity, and strong, sculpted muscles. Its emphasis on all around, complete fitness supports a variety of fitness goals, from building strength to increasing flexibility.