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Pilates as a discipline teaches balance, control of the body and greater mind-body control.
Pilates is a popular fitness training method, as the exercises are designed to stretch, strengthen, and balance the body. This form of exercise is neither exactly like gymming nor yoga, but it nicely compliments the two. It is however based on certain principles to condition your entire body: proper alignment, centring, concentration, precision, breathing and flow movement. It differs from most of the exercises out there because it is non-impactful and safe, and it really works on using the body as a whole.
Pilates as a discipline teaches balance, control of the body and greater mind-body control. These virtues when applied to other areas of life, can improve the quality of life drastically.
Pilates has also been diversified into multiple forms which includes
Mat Pilates: As the name suggests, is a training routine which involves practicing Pilates equipment-free, with only a mat for cushioning. Here, core muscles are developed through stretching and strengthening exercises. Other forms of Pilates are however reliant on some equipment for support.
Benefits - The goal of a Mat Pilates class is to strengthen the body's "powerhouse," a Pilates term that refers to your abdominals, lower back muscles, pelvic floor, hips and glutes. Through a series of floor exercises using resistance bands and rings, the workout helps build, sculpt and tone these muscles, giving your body a long, lean look. Mat Pilates can aid in flexibility and improving posture, as stretching your body is a vital part of class.
Reformer Pilates: It provides full body workout for clients at all levels. Reformer Pilates utilises equipment called the reformer, on which a wide variety of Pilates is done to built length, strength, flexibility, and balance. Your body is tested against reformer springs as most exercises involve methodical pushing and pulling and holding the posture steady in the carriage during an exercise.
Benefits – The magic of Reformer Pilates runs so much deeper than a flat tummy. Beyond your toned abs your body will be transformed from the inside out. You will notice the difference in how your body looks and moves, improving your alignment, posture, strength and flexibility.
Trapeze table: is useful for teaching beginners the principles of Pilates and for working with clients with limitations. Trapeze provides a variety of functional and challenging full body exercises for the intermediate, advanced and super advance student.
Benefits - The fact it can help you achieve movements that would not otherwise be possible, giving your body even more of a workout. It can help you become more flexible, improving your Pilates abilities in the process. It's a great option for elderly exercisers or those with mobility weaknesses, as it provides more support than Mat Pilates and it can work out multiple parts of your body with multiple purposes, including overall strength improvement, flexibility, core strength, stability and more.
MOTR Pilates: It is a small, flexible piece of equipment that allows one to train the client anywhere while focusing on key principles of alignment, balance, core control and functional movement patterns.
Benefits - A roller is good for agility training. It adds fun to the strengthening that Pilates help out with. Working out on a roller is good for balance and control of the body. Besides providing a platform for stretches and exercises, it helps in core strengthening, abdominal workouts and leg toning. One can do both lower body and upper body workups as the foam roller gives support in many body positions. They are lightweight and inexpensive and can be easily used at home. Rollers can be used for stretching, self-massage, body support and stability workouts.
Even though there are many different types of Pilates equipment available to the practice, it is best to first understand your body mechanics so that you can decide what types of equipment you may want to utilize. Each piece of equipment acts as a supplemental tool and there is no one piece that is totally necessary to the practice. While it is very beneficial to try all pieces of equipment eventually, a good Pilates mat and well-guided instructional is perhaps the best starting point for anyone new to the Pilates practice.
- Sheetal J Shah, Founder Core Pilates Studio