People may wonder why I smile so frequently. I believe it stems from the joy I feel from having discovered the secret to feeling and being truly fit. I had worked out my entire life by lifting weights, doing cardio, running, and attending a variety of classes. Despite my efforts, I never felt entirely fit. I believe this is due to not having achieved true abdominal strength. I discovered this strength after developing my core in Pilates.
In Pilates, most people begin to feel a difference in their bodies within just a few months. A strong core increases your agility, decreases the likelihood of injuries, and improves your performance in most sports and activities.
Since starting Pilates less than a year ago, I have gained two pounds of muscle. My posture has improved, and the pain in my lower back has become non-existent. I feel better—both physically and emotionally. I feel I have discovered the true secret to being physically fit, and I want to share this gift with the world.
In the Pilates studio, we often hear the question, “Who invented this contraption?” The answer is that it evolved from principles of Joseph Pilates, a physicist who was enamoured by the Classical Greek ideal of one being balanced in mind, body, and spirit. Joseph Pilates believed that both mental and physical health are inter-related through Pilates. He began to develop his own exercise system based on this belief.
In the early 1900s, he connected springs to hospital beds to enable bed-ridden patients to exercise against resistance—an innovation that later inspired his equipment designs. An influenza epidemic then struck England in 1918, killing thousands; however, not one of Pilates’s trainees died. He claimed this was evidence to support the effectiveness of his system.
Pilates requires one to exercise maximum concentration. The way in which the exercise is completed is more critical for success than the exercise itself. Those who practice Pilates should focus their attention on performing each move with precision.
Pilates can significantly transform the way your body looks, feels, and performs. It is a safe and sensible exercise system that will support you in looking and feeling your best. It teaches body awareness, good posture, and graceful movement. It also improves flexibility, agility, and may alleviate back pain. The benefit of Pilates is not age, gender, or condition-dependent. Everyone can benefit from the practice.
One hour of Pilates continues to burn calories throughout the day. Resistance training is the essence of Pilates. It is scientifically proven to build lean muscle and rev-up your metabolism to burn calories all day long.
Pilates caters to everyone—beginners and experts alike. The common thread connecting us all who engage with Pilates is how we use our mind and matter to work toward goals, such as improved flexibility, better posture, enhanced muscular strength, stabilization of the spine, rehabilitation, and injury prevention. Pilates helps one, and all, who engage in its practice. So if you are ready for a fun and effective workout that will transform your body, I invite you to call and schedule your first Pilates session or jump into a Pilates Happy Hour. Your body will thank you!
Writer: Monica Flejter, Pilates Instructor