Maybe the simpler question would be: Why not Pilates?
There are no other forms of exercise that can offer such a broad range of benefits, both physically and mentally.
Pilates really is the go-to exercise for a clear mind and a healthy body with its unique ability tomake you feel relaxed, elated and in seriously great shape.
It lengthens and stretches all the major muscle groups in the body in a balanced fashion, improving flexibility, strength, balance and body awareness.
Yoga brings the body and mind together and is built on three main elements – exercise, breathing and meditation. Both yoga and Pilates improve muscular and postural strength.
Always consult your doctor before embarking on any new fitness program, especially if you have a pre-existing medical condition or have not exercised in a long time.
In the 1920s, physical trainer Joseph Pilates introduced Pilates into America as a way to help injured athletes and dancers safely return to exercise and maintain their fitness. Since then, Pilates has been adapted to suit people in the general community.
Pilates can be an aerobic and non-aerobic form of exercise. It requires concentration and focus, because you move your body through precise ranges of motion. Pilates lengthens and stretches all the major muscle groups in your body in a balanced fashion. It requires concentration in finding a centre point to control your body through movement. Each exercise has a prescribed placement, rhythm and breathing pattern.
In Pilates, your muscles are never worked to exhaustion, so there is no sweating or straining, just intense concentration. The workout consists of a variety of exercise sequences that are performed in low repetitions, usually five to ten times, over a session of 45 to 90 minutes. Mat work and specialised equipment for resistance are used.
The Pilates method is taught to suit each person and exercises are regularly re-evaluated to ensure they are appropriate for that person. Due to the individual attention, this method can suit everybody from elite athletes to people with limited mobility, pregnant women and people with low fitness levels.
Classes are held in specialised Pilates studios, physiotherapy clinics or at your local leisure facility or community centre.
Health benefits of Pilates: