What Is Pilates: A Detailed Guide
Are you looking for a workout routine that gives you a good balance of muscle, strength and flexibility? Would you like to alleviate some nagging aches and pains with an effective low-impact workout? There may be a solution that works perfectly for you, Pilates!
If you have always wanted to find out more about this popular workout routine, you are in luck. Read on below for a comprehensive guide on Pilates, and get to make an informed decision on whether it is right for you.
What Is Pilates?
Initially referred to as Contrology, Pilates is a form of exercise that was developed in Germany by a gymnast – who was also a carpenter – by the name of Joseph Pilates, about 100 years ago. While living in the UK, he invented Pilates as a workout routine for injured soldiers and dancers. This workout routine was developed around the fact that the mind and body are connected.
To help individuals improve their overall well-being and general health, Pilates is a fitness routine that aims to strengthen the body by focusing on core strength. In a nutshell, Pilates focuses on flexibility, posture and balance, just like Yoga. Since it is a low-impact exercise, engaging in Pilates comes with a lower risk of injury to participants than other common high-impact exercises.
It is worth noting that Pilates focuses on the connection between mind and body. Your mind needs to be aware of your body’s movements and your breathing when performing the different Pilates movements.
Benefits Of Pilates
- Improved Balance: In addition to correcting your posture and improving your physical balance, Pilates also restores the balance between your body and mind. You will learn how your body performs and moves, through the mind and body connection that is highlighted during Pilates exercises.
- Improved Flexibility: Flexibility plays an important role when it comes to avoiding injuries associated with falls. Naturally, flexibility reduces with age. Fortunately, your flexibility can be improved gradually with Pilates. However, with time, you will notice a huge difference in just how flexible your entire body will become.
- Enhanced Muscle Tone: Age and physical inactivity normally lead to deterioration in muscle tone. Pilates exercises normally work on the muscles that are rarely used on a day-to-day basis. You will find that your muscles will be more toned after the initial soreness you experience after commencing your Pilates exercise routine. Simply put, these exercises are great for individuals who live sedentary lifestyles or are older in age.
- Improved Posture: Do you suffer from back pain? Do you think that you have bad posture? If so, you can benefit from Pilates exercises. These exercises are designed to teach people how to improve their posture.
- Better Overall Well-being: As previously mentioned. Pilates focuses on creating and maintaining the balance between your body and mind. As such, it helps improve your overall well-being as a person.
Who Can Benefit From Pilates?
Pilates can help all sorts of people because it can be modified to each individual’s exercise requirement. Depending on your needs, Pilates can be modified to provide a strenuous or gentle workout. Whether you normally work out on a regular basis or are about to start your fitness journey, Pilates can help you a lot.
Before you start working out using Pilates exercises, it is recommended that you find a suitable private instructor. Alternatively, you can go for Pilates classes. This way, you can avoid any unnecessary injuries, and prepare yourself for the best outcome.
Furthermore, be sure to consult your physician if you are pregnant, are suffering from a health condition or have not been working out for a while, before you start Pilates.
If you have a herniated disk, risk of blood clots, unstable blood pressure or severe osteoporosis, you should avoid Pilates.