Pilates was created by Joseph Pilates during World War 1 as a rehabilitation regime for prisoners of war. Its popularity has steadily grown over the years especially with Physiotherapists, who are able to see its benefits in preventing and treating all sorts of physical problems.
It is always amusing to see the reaction of class participants when attempting a seemingly simple exercise. The shock and realisation that something that looks so easy can be incredibly challenging- WHEN DONE CORRECTLY. On the outside Pilates can look like quite an easy exercise regime, but when you target the correct muscles with good posture, it really make you work hard.
As our lifestyles change with the modern age, we don’t use our postural muscles as effectively as we could, as a result our muscles and joints get stiff from sitting too much. Our breathing patterns can also be altered through stress or simply rushing around from our busy lives. Pilates focuses on many points to keep our bodies fit and healthy including creating optimal posture and strengthening weak and tight postural muscles. It teaches you to breath in a way that reduces stress, helps digestion, and reduces stiffness within your body. The benefits of breathing well , could take up a whole other blog!
A large portion of Pilates is about empowering you as the master of your own body. Educating you on where your weaknesses are, and how to strengthen them. How to solve your posture related aches and pains. I often describe the pathway people follow on their Pilates journey…
Starting out, unconsciously incompetent- being unaware of the areas that need to be improved
Through class, becoming consciously incompetent- knowing what it is your body isn’t doing well
With practice, discovering conscious competence- being able to actively correct your body’s dysfunctions
Finally achieving the ultimate goal of unconscious competence- your body has finally learnt what it needs to do to move and function well without you having to think about it.
I often get asked who Pilates is suitable for and I honestly believe it can benefit everyone. We have a wide variety of people in class, from the total non-exercises to weight lifters and athletes. Those with back pain or those wanting to improve their golf swing. The list is endless, if you would like to discover how amazing Pilates can make you feel, there is a full list of all the classes in Creation PT (including a new men only class) at www.pilatesbyphysio.com.