If you are new to Pilates and wondering what it's all about? Below are seven benefits of Pilates for newbies.
Pilates seems to have burst onto the scene worldwide from out of nowhere over the last 15 years or so, but did you know that this system of exercises began around 1912?
Pilates is now part of the fitness mainstream and it’s here to stay for a long time yet.
During his time, Joseph Pilates called his technique "Contrology", but it's now known simply by his surname, “Pilates". He defined Contrology as:
“The complete coordination of mind, body and spirit.”
It requires intense concentration, centered on a strong abdomen, deep stretching and focused breathing.
# 1 – Suitable For All
Almost 50 years after his death, his system of exercises is still in high demand and one of the best things about the Pilates method is that it's suitable for all fitness levels, body types and ages.
Pilates isn’t just for those who want to be fit and trim, it was also designed for people who need extra help for recovery from injury.
# 2 – Fitness For Inner Systems
The whole method was developed as a system, to get the best benefits while doing the exercises on the mat or the Pilates apparatus. With this in mind, it will help improve body alignment, blood circulation and with an emphasis on proper breathing, it will enhance and help soothe your nervous system.
Pilates is about moving or exercising efficiently with proper placement and using the correct muscles.
#3 – Gives You A Total Body Workout
Pilates workouts promote coordination, strength and balances muscle development as well as flexibility, in order to increase the range of motion for the joints.
The system puts no stress on your joints and no wear and tear on the ligaments or cartilage around the joints.
Not many people know that Pilates is both an aerobic and a resistance training exercise and therefore it helps to improve the blood circulation while giving you a total body workout.
# 4 – Core!
One of the foundations of all Pilates movement is core strength. The core muscles are the deep, internal muscles of the abdomen and back.
As you enhance your core strength, you will develop stability in your torso and thus, your body will be able to move freely and efficiently.
#5 – Promotes Calm & Balance
Unlike other traditional workout, this method does not build short bulky muscles. If our muscles are tight and bulky, we might be prone to injury.
Each Pilates workout will leave you feeling calm and balanced. Pilates conditions the whole body, from top to toe, no muscle group is over trained or undertrained.
#6 – Great for Sports
All these things in turn lead to daily life improvements such as better posture, stronger core, and efficient movement; and for many, relief from pain associated with physical imbalance (eg. back pain).
This will help you enjoy daily activities and sports with greater movement, better performance and prevent of injury. These are the reasons why these days, many elite athletes and professional sports teams use Pilates as a critical part of their training.
# 7 – Brilliant For Backs
Recent research supports what many have been saying for decades: that doing Pilates is not only great for sculpting a strong, lean body but also for preventing and treating lower back pain.
According to a small randomised, controlled study published in the Journal of Orthopedic & Sport Physical Therapy, participants who practised Pilates over a four week period experienced more relief from the symptoms than those who went through typical treatment progress.
In conclusion, the biggest benefit I see with my clients is personal awareness. They learn to understand body posture – the way they sit, stand and how to move freely without aches or pain.
So therefore, I believe Pilates will be increasingly popular as a “cross training or cross discipline tool”, as this method of exercise perfectly complements other fitness activities or medical therapies and treatments.