Pilates is a system of controlled exercises that engage the mind and condition the whole body with a particular emphasis on core strength.
The blend of strength and flexibility training improves posture, reduces stress and creates long lean muscles without bulking up. Pilates takes a balanced approach so that no muscle group is overworked and the body moves as an efficient, holistic system in sport and daily activity.
It was developed by Joseph Pilates, who believed mental and physical health were closely connected. His method was influenced by many other types of physical activity in mind: yoga, acrobatics, Tai Chi and gymnastics, to name a few. The main thing that makes Pilates unique are the guiding principles that define its method, which Joseph called ‘Contrology’. All of the Principles are equally important and are to be practiced simultaneously, and eventually in other activities that you do. The longer you practice Pilates, the more effective your sessions will be. You will become more skilled at using the correct muscles and knowing where your body is in space:
Control – comes from the muscles and the mind, preventing injuries and maximising effect
Breathing – learn to breathe fully and continuously throughout
Precision – each movement has a specific purpose and requires correct placement and alignment
Centring – awareness, focus and concentration from the core and central stabilisation
Concentration – connects mind to body and ensures correct positioning and movement
Flow – smooth movements with fluidity and grace
Benefits of Pilates include: