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Pilates1 is one of the most recent trends emerging swiftly among people. This article gives brief information about Pilates and Pilates benefits for the body.
Pilates is a low-impact exercise that targets the core and other areas of the body. It aims to strengthen muscles and improve posture and flexibility. There are different forms of training involved in Pilates.
Pilates Benefit: Top 4 Incredible Facts to Know
Pilates involves controlled movements and slow breathing. It strengthens and lengthens the significant muscles in the body.
This exercise stabilises the foundation of your body – the core. Pilates provides an intense workout by concentrating on precise movements.
It can be in the form of aerobic2 or non-aerobic exercise. The muscles are never worked till exhaustion but enough to help feel the essential burn in a workout.
A typical Pilates workout lasts from 45 to 90 minutes. The method of pilates requires individual attention and, thus, suits everybody.
It does not matter what your sports background is – a beginner or an athlete. The exercise is designed appropriately for a person.
1. History of Pilates
Pilates was discovered in the 1920s by a German physical trainer, Joseph Pilates. The name ‘pilates’ is hence based on the discoverer’s name. Joseph developed a method of various exercises that aimed to strengthen the body and mind.
Joseph worked on the pilates method during World War One when he was held at an internment camp. It took him four years to develop this exercise while testing the technique with fellow internees.
His development of pilates was accompanied by equipment which Joseph called the ‘apparatus’.
Each apparatus was designed in such a way that it helped increase the efficiency of pilates. The device assisted in stretching the body, fixing the posture, and improving core strength.
Today, the most popular apparatus is known as the ‘Reformer’. There are other apparatus designed like Cadillac, Spine Corrector, Wunda Chair, and many more.
2. Types of Pilates Classes
There are two main ways one can experience Pilates in a class:
Pilates using the mat is performed using gravity and one’s body weight on the floor. This provides resistance, conditions the muscles, and improves concentration.
Equipment-based pilates makes use of particular equipment, including a reformer. Some pilates also involve weights and other small equipment that help offer resistance to the muscles.
3. Principles of Pilates
In the modern world, Pilates is widely taught in many parts of the world. Many of the Pilates exercises are based on nine main principles. They are as follows:
- Breathing – This is one of the main principles of Pilates. Careful practice of breathing while performing pilates increases blood circulation in the body.
- Concentration – Pilates demands intense concentration and focus while exercising.
- Control – All exercises must be performed with control while working muscles on the mat or during the reformer’s use.
- Centring – To control the body while performing pilates, one must start with the centre. The centre is widely believed to be a group of muscles. This includes the abdomen, hips, inner thighs, and lower and upper back. The exercise must start with the centre before moving towards outward limbs.
- Flow – The flow of the body while performing pilates should be coordinated with one another. The precision inflow helps build stamina and strength.
- Posture – One must use the correct posture in Pilates to correct muscle imbalances.
- Precision – This principle aims at performing every move of pilates in a precise manner. Instead of doing the exercise half-heartedly, one must concentrate and perfect the moves.
- Relaxation – Pilates helps one relax and improves mental concentration.
- Stamina – The method of pilates helps increase the stamina and precision required for exercising.
4. Pilates Benefits
Pilates is a well-known fitness workout that focuses on every part of the body. Although the movements are slow and controlled, the pilates benefits are rewarding. Here are some of the benefits that will make you consider joining a Pilates class:
Tones The Muscles
Instead of toiling at the gym, lifting heavy weights, and feeling exhausted, routine pilates can help tone core muscles.
The exercise strengthens and stretches your muscles in one go. Thus, your once compressed and tight body becomes more loose and toned.
All the stretching and strengthening of the muscles results in greater flexibility of the body. Your major muscles in the body start to loosen up, making way for long, lean muscles.
According to this study, a pilate exercise for two weeks lasting for 60 minutes was enough to increase flexibility.
Many pilates moves focus solely on abs. But instead of only targeting the tummy, pilates requires you to have a proper alignment. It helps you stay balanced and aims at developing a strong core.
Relieves Pains and Aches
By adding support to your core, pilates benefits any pain and ache you might have. The improvements in mobility and flexibility can help you prevent future injuries. Pilates benefits a person with chronic lower back pain.
Improves The Posture
One of the main principles of Pilates is providing a good posture to the body. Maintaining a good alignment during a Pilates workout helps you achieve a perfect posture.
Helps in Other Workouts
One of the useful Pilates benefits for active people is that a Pilates workout will help improve your performance in other workouts.
When you have a regular Pilates routine, you swim and run faster while increasing your overall stamina.
Considered as Cardio
Cardio is not only about lifting weights and running miles. Sign yourself up for Pilates, as it is also counted as a cardiovascular exercise. When performed on reformers, the spring and jump board allow for more active and energetic moves than a mat.
May Help in Weight Loss
You can effectively lose weight if you practice Pilates regularly.
With rigorous exercises involving intense moves, you can improve your BMI and lose weight quickly. This study showcases 8 weeks of pilates exercise, which had positive effects on body fat and mass.
Doing pilates every day can result in lower stress and an improved mental state of mind. The principles of Pilates involve breathing and focusing on the mind and body.
This results in combating anxiety and stress that a person may experience. Pilates benefits your soul and helps invest time in self-care.
With so many pilates benefits, this workout will prove to be effective for your body and mind.