Pilates or Contrology as Joe Pilates referred to it, is a method of training emphasizing the core musculature to hold the skeleton in correct alignment. Correct alignment and form is key to a successful Pilates session. Hundreds of crunches done incorrectly will not produce the results or strength to hold the body in proper posture. Many issues in our back, hips, and shoulders can be traced back to incorrect positioning of our bones. Do you slouch at your desk, sleep in odd positions, constantly raise your shoulders from stress? Pilates will allow you to activate the underdeveloped muscles to correct these issues and bring awareness of your body in space. Does Pilates strengthen your abs? Yes, but more importantly, it helps you find the correct alignment in your legs, pelvis, spine, shoulders and head. It will improve your everyday function so your back isn’t as sore working in the garden or your shoulders no longer will rise at your desk.
Pilates Equipment vs Mat
Pilates can be accessed with equipment and also through mat classes. Some of the common pieces of equipment are the reformer, tower and chair. The Pilates equipment has springs which offer the client assistance to perform exercises while building strength and form. As experience builds, the springs can be changed to resistance for a more challenging exercise. Mat can be more abdominal intensive as you are using your own body to create the resistance in the exercise.