Pilates (or the Pilates Method)
In the 1920s physical trainer Joseph Pilates introduced Pilates into America as a way
to help injured athletes and dancers safely return to exercise and maintain their fitness.
Since then, Pilates has been adapted to suit people in the general community.
Pilates can be an aerobic and non-aerobic form of exercise.
It requires concentration and focus as you move your body through precise
ranges of motion. Pilates lenghtens and stretches all major muscle groups in your body
in a balanced fashion. It requires concentration in finding a centre point to control your
body through movement. Each exercise has a prescribed placement, rhythm and
In Pilates, your muscles are never worked to exhaustion, so there is no sweating or
straining, just intense concentration. the workout consists of a variety of exercise
sequences that are performed in low repetitions, usually 5 to 8 times, ober a
session of 45 to 60 minutes. Mat work and specialised equipment for resistance are used.
The Pilates Method is taught to suit each person and exercises are regularly re-evaluated
to ensure they are appropriate for that person. Due to the individual attention, this
method can suit everybody from elite athletes to people with limited mobility,
pregnant women and people with low fitness levels.
Health benefits of Pilates
Increased muscle strength, particularly of the abdominal muscles, lower back, hips and buttocks (the ‘core muscles’ of the body).
Balanced muscular strength on both sides of the body.
Enhanced muscular control of the back and limbs.
Increased body awareness
Improved stabilisation of the spine.
Greater awareness of posture.
Improved physical coordination and balance.
Relaxation of the shoulders, neck and upper back.
Safe rehabilitation of joint and spinal injuries.
Helps prevent musculoskeletal injuries.
Stress management and relaxation.
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