Is it possible for someone to shed off those extra pounds without losing too much of their already impressive physique? You might be surprised by what Pilates can do. After all, the popular workout routine was originally developed for people who wanted to get their body in shape for ballet and other dance forms. Since its inception in the early 1900s, Pilates has continued to grow in popularity across the world and today, there are more than 500 certified Pilates instructors in the US alone. If you’re looking to shed off some extra pounds then consider training with Pilates. Here are some interesting tidbits about this highly effective workout routine.
The Roles of The Mat And Reformer
It’s important to note that while Pilates has become more popular as a full-body workout routine over the years, the original Pilates method only involved using your body weight and stability as your workout. That’s why Pilates mats were originally made out of thick, cushioning foam to provide a comfortable surface for working out. When it comes to weight loss, the mat is your friend because it encourages you to focus on your breathing and stay mindful during your workout. In fact, the mat is so important to Pilates that they refer to it as the “sacred element.” However, it’s also important to note that while the foam mats were ideal for Pilates back in the day, they don’t exactly pair well with today’s fad-friendly gyms. That’s why most Pilates mats are now made of thin, synthetic materials that provide better cushioning and durability for gym-goers. However, if you’re looking for an ideal mat to practice on at home, then consider getting one that’s made of synthetic materials with additional cushioning or one that’s been specially designed for yoga and tumbling.
Different Focuses With Different Levels
While some people choose to focus solely on reducing their body fat percentage, others might want to increase their muscle mass. If that’s you, then you might want to try out a higher-level course than the one designed for weight loss. The levels in Pilates aren’t meant to be taken literally and instructors often choose which modules to include and which ones to leave out based on personal preferences. In general, the higher the level, the more difficult the exercises are and the more benefits you might notice. For example, the advanced level courses include exercises that are more difficult than the ones in the beginner’s course and they might also leave you feeling more energized.
Creates Better Athletes
Thanks to its unique style of functional training, Pilates can help build better athletes. That’s because unlike many other workout routines, Pilates encourages you to focus on your breathing and use your muscles in a coordinated way during the various exercises. As a result, you’re often left feeling refreshed and like you’ve accomplished something even when you’ve just completed your session. It’s a workout routine that can improve your fitness levels and help you make the most of your muscles. For example, the Pilates technique called the ‘Reformer’ can help build up your arms, increase your cardio endurance, and improve your balance.
More Engagement Than Other Workouts
Pilates is often touted as a workout routine that encourages more engagement than most other routines. That’s because it works with your body’s natural rhythms instead of always having to follow a set routine. For some, that means they’ll feel more motivated to dedicate themselves to the workout because they know that it won’t be easy to keep their minds focused on their studies or work while following the exercises. As a result, pilates can help increase your productivity at work too.
Helps With Overall Well-Being
It’s well-known that exercise is great for your mental health and the release of endorphins during a workout can have an additional positive effect on your mood. It’s not exactly known what components of Pilates contribute to this effect but it’s considered a ‘powerhouse’ for athletes and those who want to improve their overall well-being. In fact, the workout has been used to help soldiers recover from post-traumatic stress disorder and other mental health issues. It also helps with social anxiety, depression, anger issues, and many other common problems. As you might imagine, this is a workout routine that can truly benefit everyone.
It should be noted that Pilates is not a magic pill when it comes to losing weight. As with any other workout routine, you’ll need to monitor your diet and make sure you’re eating healthy foods and staying hydrated too. You should also consider talking to a professional if you’re serious about losing weight – they can help get you started.