Created by Joseph Pilates in the 1920’s and popularised by celebrities around the world, Pilates is a well-recognised form of exercise.
But if you’re not sure what it’s all about, Pilates is a type of low-impact exercise where you form a series of controlled movements and specific breathing techniques. It’s a full-body workout targeting your core muscles, including the abdominal, inner thighs, lower and upper back, glutes, and hip muscles.
With over 600 exercise variations, there’s something for everyone, whatever your condition or lifestyle is. Here are some of the many benefits of Pilates that make it such a great form of exercise.
1. Pilates increases your core strength
The body’s core is where all movements come from. Pilates works on these muscles to increase their strength and flexibility to support and stabilise the whole body. Because of this, it helps decrease hip and back pain and pelvic dysfunction - the areas in our body where explosive movements come from.
2. Pilates improves your posture
One of the best benefits of Pilates is that it helps with the balance of all opposing muscles, keeping the alignment of your entire body and its ideal array of joint motions, so your body can move freely. You can start with fundamental movements first, then eventually progress to using a mat and Pilates machine to train your body and improve your posture.
3. Pilates relieves tension in your back, shoulders, and legs
Pilates creates a chain of reactions in your body. As it focuses on the core muscles and improves posture, it relieves the tension from your back, shoulders, and legs that can build up during daily life. If you have a sedentary lifestyle or are deskbound at work for long periods, you’ve probably experienced tension because of it, so Pilates could be a great option for you.
4. Pilates can help to prevent injuries
People who do Pilates are less prone to injuries since the muscles of their body are well-balanced. Pilates emphasises building dynamic strength, which gives you stronger support and stability from your joints when you move. People with muscles that are weak or tight tend to be more susceptible to injuries.
5. Pilates increases your energy
Since Pilates is a low-impact, full-body workout, it improves breathing and circulation, stimulating your muscles and spine to leave you feeling good from exercising. The more you exercise, the higher your energy will be. And with higher energy comes the feeling of wanting to do it more because it makes you feel good. The best thing about it is that it doesn’t need to disrupt your daily routine since you can integrate Pilates exercises with your day-to-day tasks. Here’s a great 20-minute full-body mat Pilates workout that you can spread throughout the day
6. Pilates can relieve stress
Another of the many benefits of Pilates is that it inspires the connection between mind and body as you continue strengthening your muscles. This in turn contributes to a sense of self-awareness and inner strength that can combat feelings of anxiety.
7. Pilates enhances body awareness
Pilates enhances body awareness, by keeping your attention inward, and focussing on movement and coordination. It helps all the parts of the body to work together in balance, rather than some being stronger than others - and after doing Pilates for a while, you’ll naturally feel when your muscles or joints are out of alignment. And because a key part of Pilates is maintaining correct posture, you’ll find yourself automatically sucking your abs in and pushing your shoulders down, so slouching becomes a thing of the past.
8. Pilates relieves period pain
If you’re constantly experiencing period pains, then maybe it’s time you started doing Pilates. A study shows this great exercise is an “effective, safe, and non-invasive therapeutic modality in reducing menstrual pains”.
9. Pilates promotes weight-loss
The key to losing weight is burning more calories than your body takes in. Combined with aerobic activities, Pilates can help you burn more calories and body fat, resulting in weight loss. One study comparing Pilates with other physical exercises, also found that Pilates dramatically reduces body weight, BMI, and body fat percentage in adults with overweight or obesity.
10. Pilates can improve your sex life
Since Pilates works on the core muscles, it helps you build strength, mobility, endurance, and flexibility. But on top of that, Pilates is an effective exercise that enhances the strength of your pelvic floor. It has been proven that a strong pelvic floor is linked with increased sexual pleasure.
With all these benefits of Pilates, it’s obvious why many celebrities practice it so they can get perfectly toned muscles. So maybe it’s time to incorporate it into your daily routine!
And, if you need additional funds to help you along the way or to buy a Pilates reformer, we’re here to help. Just take a look at our cash loans up to $5,000 to find out how quick and easy it is to get your hands on some extra funds. Once a loan is approved, the cash is usually in your bank account within a few hours – so you can start working on that strong core today!