Pilates: not a passing fad!

How many exercise fads have come and gone in the last 100 years?

Popular for a while, claiming weight loss and instant fitness, endorsed by celebrities and then the next one comes along promising something better.

Would it surprise you to know that Pilates has been around for 100 years? It was first developed by WW1 prisoner of war, Joseph Pilates, as a form of exercise rehabilitation for fellow inmates. Through a varied programme of movements Pilates encourages you to consciously sense how and where the body moves in space, allowing the body and mind to act in an integrated fashion.

It is only recently due to modern research that the medical world recognises its potential as a safe and effective method of exercising. As a result, it is often promoted as a form of rehabilitation particularly after experiencing a back injury or an episode of back pain.

However, Pilates is not just for those with an injury or in pain. Many people practise Pilates as part of their weekly exercise programme where it can be used to complement a range of other activities or as a stand-alone exercise session. It is often assumed that Pilates is only suitable for those of a certain fitness level but this could not be further from the truth! Anyone can take part as Pilates exercises can be modified and adapted, focus on the individual and it is not competitive.

Pilates targets the deep abdominal muscles, Joseph Pilates often referred to them as the ‘Powerhouse’. As a result it builds strength from the inside of the body out, rebalancing and helping to optimise body awareness and movement control. This in turn helps to condition the body for what you need in life.

For specific needs and early stage recovery, Pilates is recommended on a one to one basis. That way your specific individual exercise needs can be identified, discussed and joint exercise goals formulated. Attending small, closely supervised Pilates classes can then follow. Furthermore there is specially designed large Pilates equipment using springs to assist and resist movements, enabling greater feedback for a beginner and further challenges for the more experienced (see previous blog: Pilates Mat or Machine?).

Pilates is suitable for all age groups and levels of ability, from those needing to move to those who need their movement challenged! Here at Life Fit Wellness we have physiotherapy led Pilates classes which continue as usual over the summer period. Our experienced team have the clinical knowledge to help you help yourself by challenging you physically or gently guiding you in the exercise process.

Pilates is not a passing fad, it is definitely here to stay, so why not give it a go?

For more information about any aspect of our Pilates service please do get in touch. We love to talk Pilates and will be happy to answer any of your questions or queries.

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