Benefits of Pilates at Least Once a Week
Life gets busy and hectic, and even though you know the importance of exercise to improve and maintain your health, it can be difficult to find the time to get in a workout. In order to see benefits from Pilates, you need to get into a regular routine. The exercises are safe to perform every day, but that may be an overwhelming prospect for a busy person who’s new to Pilates.
You should devise a schedule for performing Pilates that you feel you can commit to on a long-term basis. If you can only do Pilates once a week but can commit to that schedule for a period of several months to a year, you are likely to see some benefits. Remember that you can always revise your schedule later to include more workouts. A professional Pilates Instructor can help devise a program to suit your individual needs.
Common Benefits of Pilates
Because Pilates is a popular exercise routine, many people may already have a pretty good idea of what it can accomplish. If you are new to Pilates, here are some benefits that you are likely to see from performing the exercises at least once a week.
- Core Strengthening
The core muscles of your body include the rectus abdominal muscles, which is what most people think of when they talk about abs, but many other muscle groups also comprise the core. For one thing, the muscles of your abdomen go much deeper than the rectus muscles at the superficial level, and the core muscles also include the obliques and the muscles of the lower back. The primary focus of Pilates is on the core muscles of the body, and regular Pilates practice can strengthen these muscles and help improve your posture.
Strengthening the muscles of your core also helps stabilize your body, particularly your spine, and your balance should get better as a result. Pilates exercises also help to improve your balance by reconnecting the body and the mind for better coordination.
Pilates improves range of motion by stretching the muscles out rather than bunching them up. This makes the muscles longer and improves flexibility. Increased flexibility, in turn, helps you to maintain better posture and prevent injury.
- Trim Waist
If your goal is to trim your waist and improve muscle tone, it is possible to design a Pilates workout geared specifically to that objective. Pilates helps to balance musculature and improve tone, resulting in a leaner look.
What are Other Benefits of Pilates?
It may not come as a surprise to learn that Pilates can help you improve strength, flexibility, balance, and contribute to weight loss. However, these exercises can also have other benefits that may surprise you.
- Cardiovascular Endurance
Although Pilates is not considered aerobic exercise, workouts of higher intensity can help to boost your heart rate, and moving quickly from one exercise to the next with little rest time in between can help you to maintain heart rate at the higher level, and cardiovascular endurance can improve as a result.
- Back Pain Relief
Pain in your back is often caused by an underlying imbalance. By gently stretching your back muscles, teaching proper alignment, and strengthening the core muscles that support your spine, Pilates can help relieve back pain. Subjects with lower back pain participating in a study published in the Journal of Orthopedic & Sports Physical Therapy maintained a four-week Pilates program over a 12-month period, and most experienced significant relief from their pain as a result.
- Improved Bone Density
It is common for adults, especially women, to lose bone mass as they age, increasing the risk for a fracture. As a resistance exercise, Pilates can fortify the bones by pulling on them with the muscles to create tension. The same resistance also helps to strengthen the muscles at the same time.
One of the greatest benefits of Pilates is that you can adapt your workout to suit your specific needs. This means that you can begin performing Pilates at any time, regardless of your age, fitness level, or prior experience.