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Is Pilates For Everyone?

Updated on September 3, 2013

If Aerobics and Tae Bo were the fitness fad back then, today we have what seems to be less rigid workouts that focus on relaxing and calming the mind and body while staying fit. However, in no way does that make today’s trending exercises such as Pilates any less challenging.

So, what is Pilates? And is it for everyone?

Pilates was developed in 20th century

Developed in the start of the 20th century by Joseph Pilates, this type of exercise can benefit everyone and anyone, young and old. While many see it as an exercise mostly for women and senior citizens, people are realizing that Pilates is a holistic approach to keeping a healthy body and mind. What it focuses on is balancing and alignment, flexibility, endurance, and the strengthening of muscles. There is emphasis on the spine and developing a strong core, as well as proper breathing. As the founder believed mental health and physical health were inextricable, this exercise not only strengthens your body, but also your mind. It is known to help with Alzheimer’s patients, as the movements must be precise with your breathing—this requires mental concentration and provides the patients a with mind-body awareness. Perhaps it is one reason why Pilates is stereotyped more as a thing for older people. And if it can hugely improve the lives and lifestyles of the elderly, imagine how it can benefit young and able bodies.

Why Joseph Pilates Developed this system?

What drove Joseph Pilates to develop this exercise? Once a carpenter and a gymnast, he designed this system of exercise to help with injured athletes and dancers. You can do Pilates along with your other workouts, without having to worry about interference. One thing great about Pilates is that you must take baby steps, and go only as far as you can. Unlike other exercises, it does not add excessive stress on your body, and allows your mind and body to heal and correct gently and while taking your time. However this does not mean you can go into it half-hearted—in order to get the most out of it and avoid going back to square one, dedication and consistency is needed.

Once you’ve mastered a movement, there is the next step that challenges you a little further on, pushing your limits slowly but surely. More and more body builders and men wanting great biceps and abs are doing Pilates as an addition to their gym workout. Even the strong and the fast will find many misalignments and things that need correction. People with spinal problems, respiratory problems, active people, lazy people, anyone under the sun will benefit from the practice of Pilates. For people turning to this method as a cure for a condition, it is best to talk it over with your medical practitioner, so you can better know how to gauge your limits.

For anyone about to start Pilates, the difference can be felt within just a few sessions. It may take time to master the art, but it can be done. Just be patient to really absorb what Pilates can do for your body.


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