Hope you are having a Pil-easant Week!
A Woman’s Body is so Incredible & Beautiful!
Every girl becomes a woman once they reach a certain age and its extraordinary how naturally she can bring another soul into this world. When we menstruate, it is a turning point in our lives since our body and hormones begin to change naturally and we become ready for reproduction.
Another change happens at the time we stop menstruating and we Menopause.
Every woman has to experience this natural condition as they age.
What is Menopause?
A woman has a number of eggs which are kept in the ovaries and this is where the hormones are produced (estrogen and progesterone). These hormones control ovulation as well as menstruation. Menopause happens when the eggs from the ovaries are no longer released every month, menstruation stops, estrogen levels are dropped and the woman naturally ends her reproductive life. This usually happens at the age of 40 onwards.
Menopause is not an easy condition for some women. Lots of changes happen to the body and mind which makes a person feel agitated, frustrated and depressed with life. In addition to mood swings, low self-esteem and lack of focus, there are also physical effects of Menopause such as:
- Weight Gain
- Fatigue / Lethargy
- Excessive Sweating
- Hot Flushes
- Poor posture
- Hormonal Imbalances
The most important thing to remember is you are not the only one who is experiencing menopause. Therefore, let’s find ways to combat the negativity around this condition and focus on building our emotional as well as the physical aspects of our body. Gracefully accepting the condition is already the FIRST step and it’s up to us how we can prepare for the condition or respond to it.
How can Pilates Help?
Pilates comes in the next step, where the focus shifts from ‘why’ to ‘what am I going to do about it?’ Women give up on their body and exercises too quickly that everything feels and becomes down-hill at the menopause stage.
Menopausal women’s top priorities should be: improving their fitness levels, improving posture, maintaining bone strength and increasing a positive attitude. All of these are addressed through Pilates in the following ways:
- Pilates engages the mind and body through breathing and stretching all at the same time. Over a period of time, the body transforms to be stronger, more flexible and healthier thus improving fitness levels;
- Pilates conditions the body through strengthening and stretching exercises as well as touching upon muscles that have not been touched before; thus toning the body as well as improving fitness levels;
- Pilates exercises involves correcting any muscular imbalances in the body as well as correcting the spine for a better alignment; thus improving posture;
- Pilates classes involve teaching the correct way of breathing which improves oxygenation in the body, calms the mind and improves focus as well as body awareness. This helps in building a positive mental attitude and addresses mood swings and the emotional problems;
- Pilates involves body movement patterns which addresses any chronic pains on the neck, back and shoulders that are aggravated during menopause. This also improves flexibility, balance and overall fitness levels over time;
- Pilates supports bone strength through muscle strengthening (resistance) exercises, weight-bearing exercises and balance related exercises. It also addresses Osteoporosis, a bone condition that is common in women who are 50 and above. To read more about this condition, click here to my previous blog: https://sanamotion.com/2018/07/01/pilates-for-osteoporosis/
Ladies, I have touched Menopause and based on my own experience, Pilates is the form of exercise that keeps me going and makes me feel good about myself. I also don’t ignore a healthy nutritional diet which is also very important.
Embrace Menopause with Confidence!
Lots of Love, Patricia