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What Beginners Should Know About Pilates

In addition to diet and nutrition, physical strength and fitness are key to longevity. Interestingly, Pilates provides the right combination of resistance training, stretching, and conditioning that can improve overall health and wellbeing. From seniors to professional athletes, Pilates promises something for everyone. Keep reading to learn about some things that beginners should know.

Pilates Basics

Pilates provides a full body workout that improves physical conditioning and balance. Pilates is often compared to yoga however the distinction comes in the actual workout, which improves posture, enhances alignment, and strengthens the core and center of your body. Pilates is used by individuals of all ages, from seniors to professional athletes; to improve balance as well increase flexibility.

Pilates History

Pilates has an intriguing history, founded by German husband-and-wife team, Joseph and Clara Pilates. Joseph appears to have borrowed from his experience as a circus performer and martial arts professional to create and comprise early Pilates movements. Co-creator Clara became the earliest face of Pilates, taking command of the studios and instructing the new fitness trend widely.

Pilates Impact Level

Pilates is recommended for practically every fitness level because it is low impact. This impact level helps take stress off joints, like knees, which makes Pilates an excellent exercise option when rehabilitating or recovering from a physical injury or ailment.

Pilates Effect

Individuals who regularly do Pilates may experience a number of health benefits.

Pain Relief

Pilates can improve blood circulation, reduce swelling, and relieve chronic pain. That's one reason many chiropractic professionals recommend it for their patients that are rehabilitating and recovering from injuries or pain.

Pilates also builds strength by reducing the discomfort that may prevent working out for many. Pilates works the core, lumbar, and pelvis, which may be why it is effective at reducing chronic lower-back pain among those who regularly participate.

Flexibility

By strengthening the core, Pilates enhances balance and flexibility. This is very effective at improving overall balance, which can improve performance for many professional athletes or active individuals.

Fall-Prevention

An increase in balance and improved flexibility may help prevent catastrophic falls and injuries among seniors. Falls are a major precipitant of hospital stays, skilled nursing admissions, and mobility issues that impede quality of life for those over 65. Pilates can help prevent these injurious accidental falls.

Engaging in regular activities, like Pilates, may help preserve autonomy and independence for seniors who wish to age in place or remain in their own home as long as possible.

Focus

Did you know that Pilates improves focus and concentration? Pilates requires close attention and practice which may hone your ability to really focus in on a task until completion.

Researchers even believe it may hold promise as a treatment for individuals with cognitive disabilities or dysfunctions, like traumatic brain injury. The meditative qualities of Pilates requires discipline, which may serve as an impetus for change in other areas of your life.

Pilates Instruction

Individualized classes and personal sessions can give you the attention needed to master the poses and basics. Once you gain some experience and familiarity, it may help to routinely attend classes for continued motivation, inspiration, and engagement.

Additionally, practice Pilates at home, but make sure you are doing the exercises correctly so you don't injure yourself.

When checking out potential Pilates studio options, look for facilities with state-of-the-art Pilates equipment, such as the Cadillac, Reformer, Ladder Barrel, and the Wunda Chair. This equipment will expand your workout while targeting specific muscle groups.

For customized and personal Pilates instruction in the city, contact LivingProof. Our personalized and private Pilates studio in midtown provides the instruction and inspiration you need to help you succeed at meeting your own fitness goals.

About the Author: Nancy Elkes

Nancy Elkes

Nancy is excited to join Living Proof as Pilates Director.
A former competitive swimmer and massage therapist, she has been teaching for 15 years. Her certifications include: Pilates Mat and Machines, Kundalini yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, Anti Gravity yoga, and TRX.

Nancy is currently studying to become a HIST Trainer here at Living Proof. Additionally, she’s worked for Crunch since 1999 and is a guest instructor at Laughing Lotus Yoga University.