Pilates is an exercise system which focuses on developing core strength to support the skeletal system. The aim is to increase muscle tone and strength, lengthen the spine, improve flexibility, balance and posture as well as increase body awareness.
Pilates incorporates elements of yoga, martial arts and western forms of exercise. It was created by German-born Joseph Pilates in the early 1900s and has grown in popularity around the world as a well respected method of improving overall health and wellbeing.
What are the health benefits of PIlates?
There are many reported health benefits of Pilates and it is increasingly used by health professionals to complement other care.
- Alleviate back pain – when used correctly and appropriately, Pilates has been proven to offer relief to those suffering from back pain.
- Support rehabilitation – following an injury to the back, knee, hip or shoulder, Pilates can help to strengthen and stabilise the affected area of the body.
- Improve your posture – Pilates can help to realign imbalances within the body and therefore reduce the pain that comes from putting too much strain on one muscle group.
- Increase flexibility – the series of dynamic stretches undertaken in Pilates can improve flexibility, helping to reduce the chance of injury or muscle strain as well as improve circulation.
- Relieve stress and tension – as well as helping to reduce physical pain, Pilates helps to focus the mind and improve breathing patterns. This can bring additional benefits such as better concentration and sleep.
- A leaner, more toned appearance – improved posture, muscle tone and a tighter core will help to improve the look of your body
- Increase stamina – a Pilates class is made up of a series of sequences and repetitions that may be tiring at first but the more you do, the more your muscle endurance will improve.
Is it an option for me?
Pilates can be used to support a wide range of health and wellbeing goals, whatever your age or level of fitness. Talk to our highly qualified instructors and your physiotherapist to understand how it could help you.