13 Jul Getting Fit with Pilates
Yes, Pilates can be therapeutically gentle but, even more so, it can be a powerful way to enhance your health and create a fit body.
So just how can Pilates overhaul your fitness?
All movement in Pilates contains specific exercises. They each have prescribed placement (requiring mental focus, coordination and control), rhythm (generated through movement) and breath work (drawing on breathing patterns).
It is through the mixture of these elements that Pilates can become an incredibly beneficial form of exercise.
Pilates and Cardio Fitness
By building the intensity of your Pilates sessions you give your cardio fitness a real boost. Greater intensity can be created through faster transition time between movements and incorporating more advanced postures into your routine.
Doing so will drive your heart rate up, pump more blood through your cardiovascular system and get your lungs and heart working hard. This is aerobic exercise; your body uses the oxygen in your blood as fuel and provides the energy you need to develop your fitness.
Your breath work at these stages of intense exercise is crucial. Not only will improving your breathing increase your lung capacity but it brings your an overall sense of body awareness, mental mindfulness and greater focus.
Pilates and Strength Training
Pilates is widely known for its ability to build great strength. It strengthens your muscles and bones through resistance training. This can be done using exercises on the mat (with or without props) and specialised equipment – both of which safely utilise your body weight as resistance.
With resistance comes pressure. When this pressure is felt in the muscles and bones, they react by becoming stronger over time. This is how you can build great strength deep within your body.
Your physical fitness is your ability to complete movement. Every movement you do in life, from sitting in a chair to running a marathon, relies on your physical fitness. No matter how big or small, every one of these movements is related to your strength, especially that of your core.
When your core – the collection of muscles that support the spine in the torso – is strong, every movement you do will be stronger. Pilates focuses intently on developing the strength of your core which allows you to go on to condition your whole body.
Pilates and Mobility
Pilates gifts your body with the ability to move freely. It not only provides you with a strong core to execute movement but it allows you to develop greater coordination and perfect your balance.
Because Pilates is controlled and relies on your body weight as resistance, the pressure on your joints is very minimal. Pilates is also used for weight loss which helps to releases further pressure from the body.
All in all, Pilates is an extremely beneficial integrated fitness exercise. Cardio capacity, strength and mobility – Pilates increases your fitness as a whole. It is an excellent way to help you move more comfortably so you can enjoy everything you do!