By Eric Martinez
Feb. 20. 2011-
Ever consider taking a Pilates class? Or are you like most of the others that just by pass the thought of it because of the name or its reputation that it’s only for women? I am very proud to say that I used to think negative about Pilates for those similar reasons, I pretty much judged a book by its cover, and wow was I wrong. Men, please put your tough guy egos to a side for a moment and read why Pilates is beneficial for both genders.
Becoming involved in a Pilates-based program will change the way you think about your body, exercise, and your entire well being. Pilates can be extremely beneficial for counteracting the effects of many injuries and pathologies, such as Muscular Sclerosis, Sciatica, Chemo Therapy, Bulging Discs, Joint Pain, and many other conditions. The beauty of Pilates exercises are that they require you to work with as much “mindfulness” as possible toward every movement. The goal with Pilates is not to get every exercise “correct” but to help neurons fire and to work toward connecting the mind and the body to work together as one.
You’re probably thinking and asking what do Pilates exercises actually do? Well for one, they strengthen the deep core muscles, which are very important to help the spinal stability, balance, and postural alignment. Pilates also helps to create balanced muscle control and length by working the muscle on all plains of movement. A typical Pilates session should not overwork one muscle group and you should find yourself performing exercises on your back, sides, and stomach. By performing these exercises it helps create ultimate spinal stability, postural alignment, and flexibility. I can’t stress how important those three things are, bottom line is if your weak in those areas, your doomed in the gym and are asking to get injured!
Every movement in Pilates is designed to create length and strength in the muscles. Pilates is low impact, easy on the joints, and allows you to isolate and work muscles that some other form of exercise cannot reach or accommodate. In other words you are not going to be in any serious pain or lifting heavy weights grunting and making faces. Pilates can help those who have a hard time moving through everyday activities in life. I really believe that is very important, you can’t do much if your mobility is very limited. My last tip on Pilates is that it teaches you awareness and correct execution of breath. Deep breathing allows more oxygen to flow to the blood stream, muscles, calms the mind and the body, and can even help cleanse the toxins from your body and boost your energy. I think everyone would like an energy boost and to cleanse the toxins out of their bodies and we need more oxygen to flow through our muscles for when we do lift heavy weight and get those grinding sets in.
In conclusion, Pilates exercises are very beneficial to the human body and can be done by everyone, not just women. I am not saying that we have to do them; I am just saying they can really help and alter your performance and possibly help with nagging injuries or mobility. Once again I am not telling people what to do; I am just trying to help by pointing beneficial information in the right direction for people. I know most gyms offer Pilates classes and if not research some online. Don’t be afraid to try new things, you might discover your true strength or passion. Keep hitting it hard everyone, no excuses, only solutions. Peace
“Live a Dynamic Lifestyle”