As workouts intensify and stamina increases, you will begin to see dramatic transformation:
Pilates has become a common way to exercise. Pilates is a technique that focuses on core strengthening, balance, and flexibility. These principles are some of the same principles used in the rehabilitation of many common orthopedic problems. Therefore, Pilates is more commonly being used in the prevention and rehabilitation of these orthopedic problems.
In fact, professional athletes in some sports have started performing Pilates regularly to help develop their core strength and flexibility. It is thought that these skill may help keep the athlete injury-free and help enhance performance.
What Is Pilates?
Pilates is a technique developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century. Pilates developed a philosophical approach to exercises that focused on six core principles:
How Can Pilates Help an Injured Athlete?
Pilates uses many of the same principles used to help injured athletes recuperate. Pilates focuses on control of movement, so as to prevent further injury to the body. Pilates is low-impact and does not induce inflammation and overuse syndromes. Increases in strength and improvements in flexibility are additional benefits of Pilates.
How Can Pilates Help Prevent Injury?
Pilates is being used by more athletes as a means to “crosstrain.” By strengthening the core muscles, Pilates helps to teach the body more efficient and balanced movement. Pilates improves flexibility to help prevent injury. Athletes who have better core strength are thought to have better dynamic control of their movements, and are less likely to sustain injuries. This is what is known as “neuromuscular control,” which has been used to prevent injuries including ACL tears and ankle sprains.
A refreshing mind-body workout
By emphasizing proper breathing, correct spinal and pelvic alignment, and concentration on smooth, flowing movement, you become acutely in tune with your body. You actually learn how to control its movement.
In Pilates the quality of movement is valued over quantity of repetitions. Proper breathing is essential, and helps you execute movements with maximum power and efficiency. Last but not least, learning to breathe properly can reduce stress.
Develop a strong core – flat abdominals and a strong back
Pilates exercises develop a strong “core,” or center of the body. The core consists of the deep abdominal muscles along with the muscles closest to the spine. Control of the core is achieved by integrating the trunk, pelvis and shoulder girdle.
Gain long, lean muscles and flexibility
More conventional or traditional workouts are weight bearing and tend to build short, bulky muscles – the type most prone to injury. Pilates elongates and strengthens, improving muscle elasticity and joint mobility. A body with balanced strength and flexibility is less likely to be injured.
Create an evenly conditioned body, improve sports performance, and prevent injuries
In the same vein, a lot of these same conventional workouts tend to work the same muscles. This leads weak muscles tend to get weaker and strong muscles tend to get stronger. The result is muscular imbalance – a primary cause of injury and chronic back pain.
Pilates conditions the whole body, even the ankles and feet. No muscle group is over trained or under trained. Your entire musculature is evenly balanced and conditioned, helping you enjoy daily activities and sports with greater ease, better performance and less chance of injury. That’s why so many professional sports teams and elite athletes now use Pilates as a critical part of their training regimen.
Learn how to move efficiently
Pilates exercises train several muscle groups at once in smooth, continuous movements. By developing proper technique, you can actually re-train your body to move in safer, more efficient patterns of motion – invaluable for injury recovery, sports performance, good posture and optimal health.
Many of the exercises are performed in reclining or sitting positions, and most are low impact and partially weight bearing. Pilates is so safe, it is used in physical therapy facilities to rehabilitate injuries.
But it’s also challenging…
Pilates is also an extremely flexible exercise system. Modifications to the exercises allow for a range of difficulty ranging from beginning to advanced. Get the workout that best suits you now, and increase the intensity as your body conditioning improves.
The Pilates principle of core stabilization addresses posture, muscle performance and motor control – the same concepts that form the basis of most orthopedic rehabilitation and therapy. Physical Therapists are using Pilates successfully to treat many common conditions and diseases, including:
Pilates is an innovative system of mind-body exercise. The principles of Pilates emphasize body awareness, efficient breathing techniques, and quality of movement. The focus of Pilates is to connect you with your deeper muscle layers in the joints, core and extremities.
Conventional workouts fail us because they tend to focus on the muscles in one’s body that are already strong. Pilates teaches the body to utilize all muscles in the body equally creating lean muscle mass uniformly throughout the body. This more balanced participation of the muscles creates joint stability, correct posture, and more efficient, graceful movement.
Pilates is a safe, sensible exercise system that utilizes low impact, and partialy weight-bearing movements to challenge both your mind and body. For these reasons, Pilates is recommended for all ages and body conditions.
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