WHAT IS FITNESS PILATES? – THE TECHNICAL BIT!
Pilates is an exercise technique that was invented for injured dancers nearly a century ago by gymnast Joseph Pilates.
Fitness Pilates is a training option that focuses on the body as a human kinetic chain. By applying the fundamental Pilates technique and exercises, Fitness Pilates aims to offset musculoskeletal imbalances.
The aim of Fitness Pilates is to identify basic postural imbalances (see below on posture) and through Pilates based exercises:
- Increase muscular balance and strength
- Improve client’s posture
- Facilitate the clients’ ability to optimally function occupationally and recreationally.
The Pilates technique focuses on strengthening the centre by relearning the mind and body to recruit core muscles. Basic Pilates involves finding and maintaining the neutral position of the spine during standing, prone and supine positions. This is often referred to as CORE STABILITY. You will learn:
- Contraction of the Transversus Abdominus and pelvic floor.
- Maintaining stabilization of the core muscles whilst being challenged by movement of the limbs.
- Increased flexibility and strength of the lumbar, thoracic and cervical spine.
- Deep thoracic breathing
- Type of work
- Daily activities
- Emotional state
- Sport and leisure activities
- State of health, weight and physical fitness
- Feet – collapsed arches, feet rolling in or out
- An elevated hip or shoulder
- One side of the body rotated forward or back
- Pelvis and hips tilted to the front, back or side
- Rounded back/shoulders
- Drooping chest and shoulders
- Head jutting forwards
- Hyper-extended lower back, or too flattened
WHAT IS FITNESS PILATES? – EASILY EXPLAINED!
Once called “the best kept secret of the chic, rich, famous and beautiful,” Pilates is now a household name. Fitness Pilates is based on the original teachings of Joseph Pilates and effective exercise prescription. Each exercise is designed to make the maximum use of your time by targeting the deep postural muscles of the body, building strength from the inside out and re-balancing your muscles.
Fitness Pilates attacks the roots of bad posture by toning little-used muscles groups in the abdomen, torso, upper and lower back, while incorporating a slow breathing technique to energise the body. Fitness Pilates moves are also designed to work the muscles of the whole body (abdominals, lower back, thighs, buttocks, calves, arms, shoulders) and to gently lengthen them. The result is a body that is properly aligned and at less risk of injury. It is a no- impact class suitable for men and women of ages, levels and abilities, is a good way to relax and unwind and is also weight-bearing exercise so helps to prevent osteoporosis.
Why We Love It:
Fitness Pilates is challenging yet safe exercise that promotes a balanced body, a longer, leaner, toned shape, superb posture, a flat stomach, a strong back and increased mobility and flexibility. It also increases strength and endurance, improves balance and co-ordination, all without producing over developed or bulky muscles.
NO WONDER IT IS THE FAVOURITE EXERCISE OF MOVIE STARS AND IS BACKED BY LEADING GP’s, PHYSIOTHERAPISTS, CHIROPRACTORS, OSTEOPATHS AND SPORTS PHYSICIANS.
Correct posture is the position from which the body, through its musculoskeletal system, functions most efficiently and effectively whether it is static or in motion.
Posture is the alignment between the various parts of the body. Good posture underlies all exercise and exercise techniques and is the foundation for movement. Incorrect posture allows physical stress to build up in certain tissues, ultimately leading to pain and injury. In relation to posture the two most important fitness components are flexibility and strength. Postural changes are often associated with poor muscle tone (weakness) together with too much muscle tone (tightening) in others.
Our aim with Fitness Pilates is to redress the balance in muscle tone by using stretching exercises to lengthen tight muscles, combined with strengthening exercises to increase the tone of lax muscles.
The quality of your posture can make a big difference in your life. Good posture can make you look and feel younger, stronger and more confident and can help improve your breathing, advance your sports performance, decrease your risk of injury and improve your biomechanical efficiency. Over the course of your life, good posture can prevent painful physical strain in your joints.
Telltale signs of poor posture:
- collapsed arches in your feet
- an elevated hip or shoulder
- one side of the body rotated forward or back
- pelvis and hips tilted to the front, back or side
- rounded back
- drooping chest and shoulders
- head jutting forward
These are all indications that your body has become locked into poor movement patterns for any number of reasons (see above).
Changing Habits/Improving Posture:
It is possible to change and improve poor postural habits – by including Fitness Pilates in your exercise programme.
IF YOU ARE ACCOMPLISHED AT PILATES:
If you have been attending regular Pilates classes for some time, you will no doubt be familiar with the fundamental principles and will have mastered the basic techniques. You will also, by now, be feeling the many benefits of this exercise regime.
My Fitness Pilates classes are suitable for everyone regardless of age, sex and level of fitness. Each exercise can be done at different levels of intensity with additional modifications to cater for anyone with specific muscular or joint limitations. If you are in any doubt, it is always advisable to check with your GP before undergoing any exercise programme.
Participants are encouraged to work at their own individual levels, building up strength, endurance and flexibility gradually at their own pace.
My Fitness Pilates classes are run as a course. However, if you have attended classes previously and have a good understanding of the basics, you may join the course once it has started, by prior arrangement, subject to availability.