Good health comes with a lot of benefits in the life of a human being. For instance, it keeps you safe from long-term illnesses and chronic diseases and helps you feel good about yourself. Thus, taking care of your health is essential. It will boost your self-image and self-esteem and allow you to enjoy life to the fullest. The good news is that there are many ways through which you can achieve good health today.
Pilates is one way in which people are taking good care of their general well-being. It is an excellent way to strengthen your core muscles for better posture, flexibility, balance, and coordination. Pilates is for everyone, not just fitness fanatics. It helps prevent or treat back pains and promotes your general health. For more information regarding Pilates in Torrance, CA, contact us at Trinity Acupuncture. We have great information that could benefit you and help you make informed choices before incorporating Pilates into your fitness program.
Pilates — Overview
Pilates is an exercise routine that includes strengthening muscles, endurance, and flexibility movements that are moderately done to emphasize proper posture alignment, strengthen the core and promote muscle balance. This physical fitness system was not so popular a few years ago. But, its popularity has increased so much over the last years due to its effectiveness in promoting good health and treating issues like back pains among fitness fans.
Pilates was developed at the beginning of the 20th century by a fitness instructor, Joseph Pilates. It is from its instructor that the system adopted its name. Joseph called this form of exercising centrology and defined it as a way human beings can unify their body, spirit, and mind. He further developed Pilates principles, which will be discussed later, together with their usefulness. These principles are the foundation for this mode of physical fitness.
Pilates’ fitness system consists of various exercises designed to promote stability, strengthen the core, control muscle, and create endurance. Most exercise activities under this system are meant to stress movement patterns and proper posture to create balance, strength, and flexibility. The system is suitable for both sports training and physical rehabilitation.
For the many benefits it presents, Pilates can be done by anyone, whether a fitness beginner or veteran. Contrary to the myths out there, Pilates benefits many other people, not just professional dancers and serious athletes. It is only because these two groups were the very first to adapt it into their exercise routine. A lot more people from diverse categories stand to benefit from this strength training approach.
Additionally, you do not need to invest in specialized equipment to include Pilates in your exercise regimen. Some people prefer to use a Pilates apparatus, known as a Reformer. The apparatus resembles the frame of a bed and has a sliding carriage with adjustable strings.
Others use a device that resembles a trapeze table. While these apparatus could make it easier for you to perform Pilates exercises, it is not a must to use them. The truth is that most Pilate exercise routines can be done on a mat and the floor, with no devices. This makes it even easier for more people to try out this mode of exercise.
The principles of Pilates form the foundation for Joseph Pilates’ approach to fitness. These principles are abstract, but their integration could help you achieve grace, fluidity, and balance. The eight fundamental principles of Pilates are:
The principle of concentration is meant to promote a connection between your physical and mental being. When you focus, you become aware of each movement your body makes, which helps you achieve maximum physical value from every movement. It also enhances your physical awareness. Thus, you’ll be required to maintain intense focus as Pilates is more about how the exercise is done and not mainly about the movement itself.
Your focus should remain at the center of the body throughout the workout session. If you lose focus, you could bring it back consciously. A centered focus enables you to pay attention deep within yourself, which helps bring calm to your spirit and physical body. Pilates regards the middle of your upper body as your powerhouse. It is from this powerhouse that you’ll derive all the energy needed for the exercise.
Pilates is all about taking control of what is happening within and on your body. The system’s basis is on mindfulness and includes complete and safe management of your muscles. Attaining proper control of your entire body enables you to utilize the correct and exact form without leaving any part of your body out. Total control and mindful awareness make it easy for you to take charge of every movement your body makes.
The Pilate’s precision principle involves executing one exercise at a time with deliberate accuracy. It is seen as better and more effective when compared to completing a series of exercises without achieving much preciseness in the end. Thus, the work of Pilates instructors is to give clear instructions to the students on every Pilate movement on which they should embark.
Pilates exercise requires deep, diaphragmatic, and controlled breathing, promoting blood circulation to awaken muscles and cells. Your instructor will guide you on how to breathe in ample air to your lungs’ full capacity and release it similarly. Joseph Pilates discovered that breathing is an integral part of exercising. Learning to breathe correctly is more essential than following any other recommendation while exercising.
Good posture is as essential as the exercise routine. That is why Pilates insists on good posture as a fundamental principle in its exercise routine. Pilates students must always be aware of how they place all their body parts to enhance good posture. Thus, your instructor will require you to be mindful of where your head is positioned, the spine, neck, and pelvis in every workout. Good alignment also enhances proper exercise technique and breathing.
All routines in Pilates are accomplished through a moderate flow. Joseph Pilates intended all exercises to apply ease, grace, and fluidity. Thus, all movements are characterized by smooth, continuous, and elegant moves as students switch from one pose to another. Good flow brings out the strength and stamina needed to complete each workout.
Pilates’ goal is to promote a complete body and mind workout that includes integrating all the above principles. Thus, students must practice all these principles, including various body muscles that work together in support and governance of every movement in each workout session.
Pilates — Benefits
Pilates is one of the low-impact workouts that are popular for lengthening, strengthening, and toning body muscles by using repetitive and controlled movements. This way of exercising comes with many advantages for those who incorporate it into their fitness routine. Some of its significant benefits are:
It is a Whole-Body Exercise
Pilates doesn’t train one particular part of the body but the entire body. It will focus on your core, strengthen your upper and lower body and enhance posture and flexibility. Pilates is not just about physical training, but mental and spiritual training too. It also focuses on the mind and breath to provide an integrative fitness routine that could be challenging to find elsewhere.
It is Suitable for All
As previously mentioned, Pilates is not just for workout fanatics, dancers, and athletes but for all kinds of people. The foundations of this workout movement can apply to all people, and their bodies, including older adults and younger athletes. Its focus on building a solid core, proper alignment, and connecting the body and mind makes Pilates suitable for all people.
Pilates’ advantage over other forms of exercise is that it can be specially designed for individual needs. Activities can also be adapted based on an individual’s needs. For instance, if you are pregnant, your exercise routine will differ from that of other students. People who have past or current injuries can benefit from Pilates too.
It Lengthens and Strengthens Muscles
Well-built and toned muscles are suitable for the overall body and functional health as you carry on with life. Pilates uses a form of muscle contraction referred to as eccentric contraction to create solid and long muscles. This kind of muscle contraction is experienced when muscles elongate under tension. When performing a Pilate move, students resist gravity to move meticulously. Activities like these create more robust and longer muscles.
It Boosts your Energy Levels
All Pilate moves are designed to keep your breath and blood circulation going. They stimulate the muscles and spine and give the entire body a good feeling like what you get when you exercise the whole body. The more you practice, the more vigor you have to perform more moves and your daily activities.
Pilates Could Promote Weight Loss
If you are working out for weight loss, you can still attain great results with Pilates. If practiced regularly, Pilates exercises can transform your body. Pilates exercises are known for building long and strong muscles. They will improve the tone of your muscles, support a good posture and teach you to move easily with grace. All these will make you feel and look great and fit.
A good weight loss program enables you to burn more calories than you are consuming. Pilates fitness is a full-body exercise that can help you achieve that.
Incorporating Pilates into your Fitness Program
If you have been working hard to stay fit, incorporating Pilates into your strength training class could be an excellent idea. Every type of exercise in Pilates is meant to address various aspects of your general wellbeing. Incorporating Pilates into your fitness program comes with several benefits, including:
- Building core muscles — your core muscles include muscles on the abdomen, pelvic floor, diaphragm, and spine. These are muscles that you use while walking, lifting weights, and running.
- Reduced risk of injuries while weight training — Pilates’ primary focus is on stretching the body through gentle, incremental movements to build long and leaner muscles instead of bulk muscles. After a few sessions of Pilates, you will be flexible enough to exercise even more. Pilates also creates endurance across the body, reducing the risk of injuries and muscle strains while exercising.
- Improved coordination and flexibility — Pilates exercises make muscles denser and leaner. They improve your endurance and balance. The principle of flow increases your range of motion progressively, thereby gradually increasing coordination and flexibility. You need greater flexibility to perform better in sports with reduced injuries. Flexibility and coordination are essential to people of all ages.
Pilates exercise is easy to adopt for all people, even those who don’t have a fitness routine. You do not need a profound fitness routine to obtain fitness results with Pilates.
For beginners, Pilates is straightforward to learn. Start with the right Pilates instructor. Be careful to only sign up with a certified and experienced Pilates instructor.
To find a good instructor, inquire from your local health clubs. You might find a good recommendation to get you started with the right fitness program. You can also find a Pilates instructor online from reliable fitness websites. However, ensure that the instructor has a good track record of performance before engaging their services.
If you already have a steady workout routine, you can include Pilates with your weight lifting exercises for better results. However, make sure you are not overexerting yourself as Pilates exercises are already intense and demanding. Working with a professional trainer will ensure that you are targeting the right muscles for the best results.
Find a Pilates Instructor Near Me
If you would like to strengthen your core muscle or to promote endurance, flexibility, and posture in Torrance, CA, you might achieve that and more with Pilates fitness. This form of exercising is suitable for all kinds of people and can be tailor-made for individual needs for more favorable results. At Trinity Acupuncture, we are a holistic healing clinic offering acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine. We could guide you on the right steps to take to incorporate Pilates into your fitness routine. Call us at 310-371-1777 and let us review your fitness needs for informed advice.