Firstly, just what is Pilates?
Developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th Century and originally known as Contrology (this should give you a clue!), Pilates is a complete system of exercises that are aimed at improving postural alignment, increasing core strength, stabilizing the joints, building lean and toned muscle and improving balance and flexibility.
Pilates can be performed on specially designed equipment (The Reformer, Cadillac, Barre, Chair… I know they sound more like instruments of torture) or on a mat using your own body weight as resistance.
The focus is always on correct movement patterns – every action is deliberate and executed with precision. A good Pilates session will leave you feeling taller, more flexible, refreshed and empowered.
What are the benefits of doing Pilates?
Pilates is a very targeted form of exercise that works the whole body. Starting with your postural alignment, the slow and deliberate performance of each exercise is designed to develop and enhance the correct biomechanical movement of the body, which will help to mobilise, strengthen and stretch all the major muscle groups and reduce the risk of injury. When done properly Pilates is intense … Those used to doing more high impact exercise are often surprised at the intensity of Pilates and just how hard the tiny movements can be!
Should I be doing Pilates if I do other forms of exercise?
YES!! Whatever form of exercise you love from walking and gardening to triathlons and marathons, you will reap the benefits from doing Pilates.
Because Pilates works all the planes of the body equally (left and right sides, front and back) the emphasis is on balance, stability and strength. The focus on repeatedly and accurately performing each exercise ultimately trains the brain to automatically recruit the deep core stabilizing muscles around your spine. Not only this but by activating the deep core muscles you will be helping to protect your spine and your joints.
So whether you are cycling or gardening, lifting weights or running, your deep core muscles will be strengthened which will help to protect your back, your hips, your shoulders, your knees and enable you to perform each task effectively, efficiently and safely and hopefully for many, many years!
How do I get into Pilates?
First and foremost find a knowledgeable and reputable teacher. Always start with the basics … no matter how much exercise you do or how fit you are. Learning the fundamentals will mean that ultimately you will get far more out of your Pilates practice.
Are there any other benefits of doing Pilates?
Most definitely. The considered approach that Pilates takes from the incorporation of the breath into every exercise to the focus of aligning the mind and the body helps to improve focus, reduce anxiety and improve flexibility.
The other beautiful thing about Pilates is that it is non competitive and non judgmental. It doesn’t matter your age, size or ability .. there is a place for us all.
You can join our live, online Pilates classes on Mon, Tues, Thurs and Fridays. We cater for all abilities. We run our online classes via Zoom so you can join us from anywhere with a good internet connection, even if you're away on holiday.
Take a look at our timetable where you'll be able to book online. We hope to see you in class: