Hope you are having a ‘Pil-easant’ Day!
In all my previous blogs, I keep highlighting the benefits of Pilates and how it can condition your body to resolve or improve:
- Balance & Control
- Postural Alignment
- Core Strength
- Muscular Imbalances as a result of Injuries
- Body Awareness
For those of you who are new to Pilates (and who have done lots of research before) or maybe experienced in Pilates, you might think that highlighting the benefits may sound monotonous as we all know WHAT the results of Pilates are. When you google up information, you will see almost the same things repeated again and again, which is great as the purpose is to really dwell the concept of Pilates across the world and build a bigger community.
However, I would like to focus on the HOW element!
Let’s pick one of the benefits and select FLEXIBILITY
Importance of Flexibility:
Why do I need to be flexible when I can excel in all my physical activities and goals?
A few people may think that flexibility is not important for certain physical exercises, especially when they might be at an age or time in their life where they are comfortably achieving their physical activities, ambitions and goals.
However, what some people fail to understand is that flexibility:
- Contributes to enhancing physical performance;
- Avoids any risk of injuries as we grow older;
- Allows you to challenge yourself for that one extra stretch or one extra rep (more like encouraging you to come out of your comfort zone by allowing you to beat your exercise targets and see better results)
How can Pilates Improve Flexibility?
In a Pilates class, flexibility is enhanced when you perform stretches in repeated sequences and motions and the ultimate result is strengthening of every muscle (including the small muscles in the body). Injuries or weakness in the muscles occur when these small muscles are not taken care of over a period of time; especially for sports lovers, athletes and weight lifters. It doesn’t matter if you do Pilates on a mat or on a reformer machine, flexibility will improve over time if Pilates is done consistently.
In a Pilates class, you are sometimes required to perform certain exercises slowly and with full control. This builds up intensity of the exercise and allows you to target specific muscles more effectively. When you transition from one exercise to the next in Pilates, your body is naturally forced to sustain control and balance and over a period of time, this increases flexibility.
In a Pilates class, you might often hear your instructor say ‘lengthen your spine’ while performing an exercise. This is when you are required to extend your body and stretch further. Doing this will strengthen your muscles and align your spine and overtime increase flexibility.
Looking at the above, it is no wonder that Sport Lovers, Athletes and Weightlifters turn to Pilates for maintenance of the body and rehabilitation when injuries occur.
So much for just 1 benefit (PHEW!)
Stay Tuned for more!