What is Pilates?
Pilates is an exercise technique (holistic approach) which utilises stretching the body to gain strength and balance. Balance and control of the body is the main teaching of Pilates which has been around for over 70 years. It was created by Joseph Pilates who was born in Germany in 1880. It is used in general fitness and health wellbeing, physical therapy sessions and an exercise routine as part of professional sports training for athletes.
If your main mission is to lose weight, pilates classes can be taken alongside a controlled diet plan and extra cardio exercise classes. A few session of weight training would also be effective in helping you attain your goals.
Benefit of Pilates
- Increased lung capacity due to breathing exercises.
- Increased circulation due to deep breathing.
- Posture and balance is improved.
- Overall strength and flexibility.
- Joints and bone density also improve with regular practice.
- Excellent form of exercise for abdominal and back muscles.
- Release stress.
- Prevention of injury.
How do I start?
Pilates DVDs, Videos and Books are popular as they allow you to learn and practice the exercises from the comfort and ease of your own home. To facilitate the majority of exercises, the equipment machines at home would be ideal. It is advisable to look for machine equipment with affordable prices. To have a good workout, you may find that using the mats and balls are quite sufficient as you would initially start with breathing exercises.
The exercises may appear tedious for a beginner. It is recommended that you should start at a pace which is comfortable (and not painful for you when done!). As your body starts to get accustomed to the stretching exercises, you will be able to push further.
Pilates classes are run across the UK in the majority of health and fitness clubs.
Good Luck in your pilates exercising classes, be it at home or in the gym with an experienced instructor!