Livekick Team | Jan. 25, 2018

Pilates is a mind-body fitness system aimed to improve flexibility, build strength and endurance, and develop control throughout the entire body. Joseph Pilates founded this system based on six main principles: breathing, control, concentration, precision, fluidity and centralization. All of these principles are centered around integrating body and mind. When he originally developed the system, Pilates included more than 500 exercises. The system ultimately attempts to properly coordinate deep breathing practice with movement, increasing the intake of oxygen and the circulation of this oxygenated blood to every part of the body. Pilates requires mind-muscle activation for every physical movement and the quality of movement as well as body alignment and rhythmic breathing are stressed over quantity of exercise repetitions.

Should I try Pilates?
Pilates is a safe, sensible exercise system which will improve your flexibility and agility, teach body awareness and help to improve your posture. Due to the fact that Pilates is quite low-impact and there is less chance of injury, it is highly recommended for the elderly population, pregnant women, individuals with disabilities and children. The Pilates method has demonstrated its effectiveness in treating chronic low back pain (CLBP). Some studies conclude this method allows people with CLBP to overcome the pain by through the stabilization of the muscles which support the lumbar spine, including but not limited to the transverse abdominis

Pilates can often be misconstrued as a relaxed or “easy” form of exercise, however, this is not the case. Pilates focuses on strengthening and toning your muscles and you will undoubtedly feel the burn the following day! A pilates workout is great for pretty much every individual, particularly due to its minimal joint impact. And because pilates improves flexibility, it can help improve stiff joints by helping stimulate the production of synovial fluid. This fluid is known to enhance the lubrication at the joints and therefore decrease the feeling of being “stiff.”
Pilates is an especially wonderful exercise system when it comes to improving mental health. The atmosphere of a pilates class, similar to yoga, is calm and promotes a high level of focus and clarity thanks to the encouragement of fluid breathing with each exercise.

Finally, pilates actively improves overall flexibility. Many people exercise intensely but overlook the importance of stretching and lengthening the muscles of the body. During exercise, your muscles tighten and shorten, which can lead to a restriction of motion and possible injury during or following workout sessions. Pilates exercises offer a well-balanced range of movements that work to improve flexibility. 

Pilates can be practiced at home, in gym classes or one-on-one with a Pilates instructor. During a class you can expect to use minimal equipment such as magic circles, bands, weights and resistance bands. In some specialized Pilates studios, you may also find larger pieces of equipment including the Pilates reformer, Pilates chairs, barrels, the tower, and the cadillac.