Pilates benefits

Come along to Pilates Classes Coventry and Solihull

“In ten sessions you will feel the difference, in twenty you will see the difference and in thirty you will have a whole, new body” – Quote by Joseph Pilates.

Pilates benefits the body, mind and spirit.  Practicing Pilates exercises regularly can help you to re-train your body so that it begins to support efficient, graceful movement in your everyday life.  They help  to improve your mind-to-body awareness.  You should leave a class feeling refreshed and at peace.  Outwardly, your body will begin to lengthen, become stronger (without becoming bulky) and you will become more flexible.  Pilates can correct muscular imbalances, caused by poor posture and can get you out of pain. 

What are Pilates exercises?

Pilates exercises  are a series of 34 different exercises, developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s. They were originally used as a rehabilitation program for prisoners of war and were later found to show great benefits for anyone who wanted to improve their general fitness, flexibility and strength.

Pilates exercises have been adapted to suit many different approaches over the years. One branch of Pilates is  ‘fitness Pilates’ which is taught mostly in leisure centres or gyms, usually in large classes with minimal hands-on instruction.   My classes are a little different to these and have a more clinical, traditional approach, more like the original method devised by Joseph Pilates and used by physiotherapists, osteopaths and chiropractors.

What can I expect in a Pilates Class?

The exercises have been modified over time so that they are suitable for most people.  In my class, they are performed to a background of peaceful, beautiful music on a soft mat on the floor.   You will have full instruction and hands-on correction if you need it.  They are done slowly and gently, in time with your breathing.  They are executed with precision and control.    There are several levels of challenge within each exercise, starting with the basics to build your strength and then,  working at your own pace,  you will progress through the levels – up to ‘advanced’  if you like!  You will know which level is right for you – your body will tell you.   Each level builds on the previous one, so that you are always challenged and striving to improve.  You never get bored!

How do Pilates exercises work?

The foundation of the exercises is to develop the strength of the core and pelvic floor muscles. These are the deep, stabilising muscles of the abdomen and back which support the spine. They can become quite weak in daily life as we adopt habitual poor posture.  A weak core means that the spine is not supported properly.

The large muscles in our bodies then have to take over the job of a weak core and they become overused.  They get shorter, tighter or overstretched and begin to signal their discomfort by becoming painful.  Over time, if we ignore the signals,  our bodies  become out of alignment, painful and prone to further injury.

Regularly practicing Pilates can change these unhealthy movement patterns.  The new movements re-educate the brain and bring back the correct firing sequence of our muscles. We learn to recruit and strengthen the core muscles first, before the larger muscles come into play.  We start to move better.

 The great advantage of Pilates exercises is that they work lots of muscle groups simultaneously during one movement.  This makes the method a very efficient and effective way to build strength and flexibility.

Joseph Pilates summed it up with this quote:  “With body, mind and spirit functioning perfectly as a co-ordinated whole, what else could reasonably be expected, other than an active, alert, disciplined person”

Pilates Classes in Coventry and Solihull

 Pilates Classes Coventry and Solihull