What is Pilates?

By On February 29, 2012 · 2 Comments

The Pilates Method is an approach in mind & body integration that was created by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s. The fundamental principles focus on balance, concentration, control, centered awareness, fluid movements, and breath.

Pilates enhances a core strength that increases flexibility, coordination and spacial awareness. The repertoire is performed as a mat class or on specialized equipment utilizing springs for resistance. Pilates engages the whole person, not just the muscles. For everybody from an athlete to mother, Pilates will develop and enhance stamina, posture, alignment & core strength for elite performance to everyday activities.

How is this done?

The Pilates method uses specifically designed equipment and floor exercises to promote uniform development of the body. This allows weaker muscles to develop instead of the body continuously relying on the stronger muscles to do the work. Pilates focuses on the core muscles first, specifically stomach, butt and back, in a sense, working the muscles from the inside out. This achieves and maintains a balanced aligned body.

What are the benefits of Pilates?

  • Elongates muscles without building bulk.
  • Slims and tones problem areas – Hips, buttocks, thighs and arms.
  • Strengthens the back by building support in the abdominals.
  • Increases flexibility while building strength.
  • Improves posture, coordination, circulation and overall health.
  • Lowers risk of injury by eliminating tension and stress on joints, back, and neck.
  • Increases range of motion.
  • Promotes relaxation and a sense of well being.
  • Is fun and challenging to do!

Who can benefit from Pilates?

  • People needing special consideration to injured and problem areas: including back pain, scoliosis, shoulder issues, fibromyalgia and much more.
  • The super fit: athletes, dancers, and martial artists.
  • Women who are pre and post-natal.
  • Anyone wanting to shape and define their body.

Points of interest

  • In Pilates, every movement originates from the core, with a breath, and stays within a defined and safe range of motion.
  • Pilates equipment was created long before Nautilus equipment and has remained unchanged for 70 years. Joseph Pilates was definitely ahead of his time.
  • Joseph Pilates’ guiding philosophy was his belief that the body must be exercised in its entirety to achieve good health. He had a profound reverence for the simplicity of movement and the mind body connection.
  • Joseph Pilates combined the breathing and meditation of yoga, the weight bearing aspects of weight training and the balancing elements of Tai Chi which has a sequence of movements each building upon the last & increasing in difficulty.

2 Responses

  • Denise Wakeman March 2, 2012 at 5:50 pm · Reply

    I’ve been doing Pilates for about nine years. I can attest to the fact that I’m stronger and in better shape as a result. I believe it has helped me when I run and train for endurance races. I hear Lora in my head telling me to use my core and lead with my heart and as soon as I make those adjustments, I feel and run better. Thanks, Lora!

    • Lora Anderson March 7, 2012 at 7:07 pm · Reply

      You bet Denise! Thanks for being a dedicated and amazing client. So excited Pilates is helping you run like Forest! 🙂

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