Pilates is getting increased attention these days due to its claims of improved posture, better athletic performance, and increased strength. Pilates has become an important add-on to physical rehabilitation and sports training of all kinds.
Pilates was created by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century and is based on Contrology. This method is based on the belief that one uses the mind to control the muscles. Pilates helps to balance the body by focusing on the core postural muscles.
Pilates offers many physical benefits to those that practice it once or twice a week. With Pilates, we can experience vast improvements in the way we move or stand in everyday life, or perform in athletic activities.
Pilates mimics the motions of everyday life with movement and increased body awareness. Joe Pilates intended that these exercises be applicable to any movement activity. It’s no coincidence then, that a Pilates lateral flexion and rotation movement is very similar to how the body moves while turning to pick up a child or going for that great golf swing. Or, those dormant back muscles that wake up and start pulling the forward shoulders back where they belong.
The quality of each Pilates movement is what’s important, not the quantity of exercises performed. Practicing the depth and correctness of Pilates leads to muscle memory – the type that subsists long after a person leaves the Pilates studio, leaving an impression in the subconscious mind.
Each Pilates practice session is an important variable for success of body retention. Therefore, Pilates that is learned is only as good as its teaching. According to Joe Pilates “you must always faithfully and without deviation follow the instructions accompanying the exercises and always keep your mind wholly concentrated on the purpose of the exercises as you perform them”.