If you haven’t tried Pilates yet, either Reformer or Mat, you are seriously missing out. Pilates is a workout that is not only great on it’s own, but it’s a great complimentary workout for athletes. In between intense training days, Pilates can be used to keep your muscles loose and flexible which is important for staying injury-free, and allows your body to recuperate while still working your muscles. Other benefits of Pilates include:
1. Body awareness: One major reason why people are such big fans of Pilates is because the practice helps you become more aware of your body both in and out of the studio. Pilates teaches you how to breathe — useful when you’re out on your daily run — and how to stand correctly — useful for making your belly look that much flatter. It’s not all deep breathing and better posture; a regular Pilates practice can also connect you with your body and help you be better coordinated and mindful in all your movements.
2. A Killer Core:The instability that is created by the rolling carriage in Reformer Pilates with the springs set at different levels of resistance helps us develop serious core strength—and the stronger our core is, the better our posture, balance and overall fitness becomes. Also, Mat Pilates exercises activate abs more than crunches do, helping you achieve a killer core.
3. Increased Flexibility: Reformers are large enough to accommodate full-range motion on even the tallest clients. This is excellent for boosting flexibility while simultaneously building strength. Having greater flexibility improves our performance in sports and other physical activities while helping to prevent injuries. You’ll find the exercises condition the whole body—even the ankles and feet, which contribute to healthy, balanced muscles.
4. A Long and Lean Body: More conventional or traditional workouts are weight bearing and tend to build short, bulky muscles – the type most prone to injury. Pilates elongates and strengthens, improving muscle elasticity and joint mobility. A body with balanced strength and flexibility is less likely to be injured.
5. Pilates is Low Impact, but Challenging: Pilates is so low impact and safe that it is often used in Physical Therapy for clients with current or past injuries, as well as Pre-Natal and Post-Natal Fitness. But, don’t let it fool you! Modifications to the exercises allow for a range of difficulty ranging from beginning to advanced, and classes such as Pilates Jump Board classes give you an intense cardio workout.
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