Get Started With Pilates Training
Today, I’d like to teach you a bit about the history and main principles behind the Pilates method of training. Just so you know, I’m far from being an expert on this subject, nonetheless, I thought this could be a great way for you and me to learn more about this increasingly popular fitness system.
Pilates is a form of exercise that was invented by Joseph Pilates, a German circus performer, and boxer who lived from 1883 to 1967. At the outbreak of World War I, he was put in an internment camp where he started to develop his own exercises using just a floor.
Using the simple items available to him, he also developed a series of exercises based on yoga, dance, and gymnastics. His methods of training were put to use during the time he spent in the camps as he helped rehabilitate soldiers and patients.
Pilates workouts, unlike many other fitness methods, include very few repetitions. Instead, the goal is often to slowly do one movement with precision while controlling breathing
For these reasons, Pilates can be practiced by practically any type of person. Dancers, athletes, acrobats, as well as people of all age, can greatly benefit from the
One cannot mention Pilates without mentioning the 8 fundamentals of the method. These principles, according to Joseph Pilates, help achieve balance, grace, and fluidity to the body.
Here they are:
The 8 principles of Pilates
-Concentration: In the Pilates method, the mind-body connection is extremely important. It is thought that to optimize an exercise, one must be entirely focused on each movement.
-Centering: Pilates called the center of the torso, the “powerhouse”. This is the place where you should bring your focus when doing your exercises. All your strength and energy emanates from this area, and focusing on this particular area will bring calm to your body and mind.
-Control: The way you move during an exercise should always be done using the proper form. This means having complete control over your muscles and leaving no part of your body unattended.
-Precision: As mentioned earlier, Pilates’ movements should be done slowly, and meticulously. One perfect moment is always preferable to a higher set of repetitions.
-Breathing: Joseph Pilates used to say that breathing was the most important part of any training regimen. In fact, breathing activates blood circulation and awakens blood cells and muscles. As you train, you should focus on your breathing, making sure you keep inhaling fully before exhaling.
-Alignment: Pilates promotes good posture. Whether you are standing up or lying on the ground, you should make a conscious effort to be aware of the position of your pelvis, neck, head, and spine.
-Flow: Every Pilates movement should be executed with grace and fluidity. Even as you move from one pose to another, every transition and movement should be done gracefully so that strength and stamina are always forced to develop.
-Integration: This principle underlines the importance of combining every fundamental into each movement. This is done so that your muscles work in tandem as you execute movements.
This might seem very abstract and esoteric, but they are the 8 principles taught in Pilates classes. From what I’ve gathered about Pilates, its workout seems to be an interesting combination of Yoga and body-weight exercises.
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