Pilates is an incredibly beneficial workout, but it’s often misunderstood. People think that because it’s not as grueling as boot camp or heavy weight lifting, it must not be effective. But Pilates is a precision workout – every movement counts. And when done correctly, the benefits of Pilates can surprise you. So if you’re looking for an effective, low-impact exercise with several benefits, keep reading.
What is the philosophy behind Pilates?
Pilates is a mind-body exercise method that emphasizes precision and control. The Pilates method was developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 1900s, and today it is taught all over the world as a form of exercise and physical therapy. Joseph Pilates said of his method;
“Contrology is not a system of haphazard exercises designed to produce only bulging muscles.” – Joseph Pilates
He created the principles and movements of the method not just for strength and improved appearance. The benefits of practicing Pilates include mobility, longevity, increased circulation, enhanced mood, and overall quality of life. Back then and today, it was common to walk into a gym and see people exercising without intention or focus. Weight lifting can be beneficial, but not when it’s done with an arbitrary approach. Precision pilates runs contrary to this.
Pilates is based on six principles: concentration, control, center, precision, breath, and flow. These principles are evident in every Pilates movement, from the simplest exercises to the most complex sequences. Concentration and control are necessary to maintain proper form and alignment, while precision ensures that each movement is executed with intention. The breath is an essential part of Pilates, used to both control the body and focus the mind. And finally, flow refers to the fluidity of movement that is characteristic of the Pilates method. By following these principles, practitioners of Pilates can achieve physical and mental balance and harmony.
Why is precision important in Pilates?
Precision Pilates is important for a number of reasons. First, it helps to ensure the exercises are done correctly. This helps you get the most out of them. Second, precision helps to prevent injury by ensuring that your body is in the correct alignment. Third, precision enhances the mind-body connection. Focusing on each movement makes you aware of what your body is doing. When executed with precision, Pilates can be an incredibly effective workout for the mind and the body.
How many times a week should I do Pilates to see results?
“A few well-designed movements, properly performed in a balanced sequence, are worth hours of sloppy calisthenics or forced contortion.” – Joseph Pilates
When deciding how often to practice Pilates there are two things to keep in mind. First, quality over quantity. Second, something is better than nothing. Ideally, most trained instructors will recommend practicing Pilates 3 times a week for 45-60 minutes in each session. If time or your budget allows for once, start there. Most importantly, while in Pilates class, make the most of it. Set that time aside to focus on your practice and enjoy it.
Pilates is a powerful tool that sculpts and tones your body, but it’s also so much more. When you understand how precision Pilates affects the results you see in your practice, you can really maximize your time in the Pilates studio. We hope this article helped enlighten you about the power of precision. Are you excited to try these principles out? We know we are! If you want to experience the transformative power of Pilates yourself, join us at ProHealth Physical Therapy and Pilates today.