What is Pilates?
At it’s most simple, Pilates is a non-impact form of resistance training. Not only is Pilates a form of exercise but also a means of injury prevention and rehabilitation. There are six principles of Pilates: concentration, centering, breathing, control, precision and fluidity. As these principles are mastered the practitioner is better able to move with maximum efficiency while minimizing stress on the body. Pilates focus’s on correct spinal and pelvic alignment, proper breathing, and smooth movement. By emphasizing these things you learn to move in a controlled manner from a solid base of support, always with a purpose and goal in mind.
Pilates was developed and taught by Joseph Pilates from the 1920’s through to his death in 1967. It was designed to stretch, strengthen, and balance the entire body. It does this by strengthening the weaker, under-conditioned muscles while stretching the overworked, more dominant muscles. In challenging the deep abdominal and spinal muscles Pilates prepares the body for balanced, efficient movement on all planes and in all ranges of motion. Pilates can be done according to your own fitness level. The manner in which exercises are performed is much more significant than the number of repetitions. As you gain strength, the challenges increase, but only as you are ready for them.
Pilates has proven itself invaluable not only as an effective form of exercise but also an exceptional cross-training tool. Pilates teaches control of the mind over the body so it is excellent for skiers, snow boarders, golfers, tennis players, runners, etc. Imagine if you could initiate all of your movement from your core? You would then be able to use your body as an integrated whole, working the deeper muscles as a cohesive unit to improve your coordination and balance. Who wouldn’t want that? Whether you are a weekend warrior, an elite athlete, or someone whose goal is to be healthy and get through their day without pain, Pilates is right for you!
What are some benefits of Pilates?
- Increased muscular strength and flexibility, thus fully supported joint range of motion.
- A balance of strength and flexibility of the muscles of the abdomen and back.
- Healthy hips, knees and shoulders.
- Improved body alignment and overall posture.
- Increased physical and mental well being.
- Improved posture, coordination and balance.