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July 10, 2020
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Pilates

Background

Pilates is a form of exercise developed by Joseph Pilates. It was developed as an exercise program for injured dancers and soldiers whilst Pilates was living in the UK. Joseph Pilates believed that physical and mental health were closely connected. In the 1920's he immigrated to the US and opened a Pilates studio in New York. Originally this form of exercise was called Contrology.

Most people will have no problem with this form of exercise. It is suitable for beginners and for people who exercise regularly.

Benefits

Pilates focuses on core strength, posture, breath and flexibility. The health benefits include:

  • Good posture - Pilates will teach you to gain and maintain good posture. The exercises require that your body is always in alignment. This is especially beneficial if you suffer from lower back pain.
  • Muscle Tone - You will find that your muscles will be much more toned. This is especially good for older people and those who are normally quite sedate in their daily life as muscle tone is usually lost with age and inactivity.
  • Abdominal muscles - Pilates focuses on strengthening your core which includes your abdominal muscles.
  • Flexibility - As we age we tend to lose flexibility. Pilates will help to restore your flexibility. You will be amazed at how more flexible your body has become. This is especially important for avoiding injuries from falls.
  • Improved balance - Through the mind-body connection which is taught in Pilates you will become much more aware of how your body moves and performs. Pilates not only improves your physical balance through correct posture but will also restore your mind-body balance.
  • Reduced stress - When doing the exercises, you'll be totally engrossed and won't be able to think about all those responsibilities that weigh you down on a day to day basis. You will focus on your breathing and the movements that you are making with your body. An excellent way to relieve stress.
  • Gives you a general sense of well-being - Pilates focuses on providing balance between your mind and body therefore it gives you an overall sense of well-being.

Equipment

You do not need any special equipment just make sure to wear clothing that is non restrictive and comfortable. Classes are taken in bare feet or pilates/yoga socks. It would also be helpful if you had a pilates/yoga mat, although these can be borrowed.

 

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