There are some people, like me, that don’t need a reason to try out a form of fitness. However, the majority of people are wary to try something new and different. It can be daunting to get to the gym period, much less walk in to a class with other people who already ‘get it’ and try to learn new lingo, movements, and all the while, look like you DO, in fact, get it. *Oh, come on, you know that’s part of it..no one wants to look silly.
In all honesty, the first time you take a Pilates class, perhaps the first 10 times you take a Pilates class, you will not ‘get it’. There are many things to think for each movement: alignment, breath pattern, core engagement, and the parts of the movement. But, I believe you should still give Pilates a try. Here are 5 reasons:
1. Pilates Is For Everyone
Pilates is a form of exercise that can be done, in some form, by anyone. If you are breathing, you can do Pilates. True, not all people can just walk into a class and do all of the movements, but the Pilates principles can be practiced regardless of age, physical condition, or stage in life.
2. Pilates Can Be Practiced Anywhere
Unlike some fitness forms which require machines, props, or certain environments, Pilates can be practiced anywhere with minimal preparation. Yes, a mat is helpful, but a beach towel or carpet can work and only enough space to lengthen out your body is necessary. If you are a busy executive, multi-tasking parent, or on vacation, you can practice Pilates.
3. Pilates Is Efficient
Many people do not have the time to invest in an hour long routine. Because the Pilates Method incorporates stretching, strengthening, and in some cases cardiovascular training, it is an efficient way to get a well-rounded workout. Pilates also moves seamlessly from one exercise to the next, so you can flow through the practice without stopping to adjust body position. (*Well, truthfully, you are constantly making adjustments, but it is part of the workout!)
4. Pilates Works When You Aren’t
When Pilates is practiced regularly, a certain amount of muscle memory occurs. So, during class, your body twists as you purposefully engage the core to initiate and sustain the movement. As you move through your daily life, as you twist, your body’s muscles activate as if you were doing this same movement in class. The core engages and your body is protected and strengthened simultaneously.
If you are trying to decide whether or not to try Pilates, you are doing this for one or two reasons. Either something about your current routine is not working or you have no current routine. So, why not give Pilates a try? Maybe you are lacking core strengthening or stretching in your current routine-Pilates can fix that. Perhaps you are injured and cannot do your regular routine- Pilates can help you maintain your current fitness level while recovering. On the other hand, maybe you are only thinking about Pilates because you know you need to do something, but you don’t know where to begin. You might be worried you don’t have enough strength to even get started. But this is FALSE! As I said at the beginning of the post, if you can breathe, you can practice Pilates. Set up a session with a Pilates Personal Trainer or look for a beginning class. Remember the BEST exercise is the one you will actually do, so give Pilates a try, it’s worth it!