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Pilates is being hailed as “the fastest growing exercise technique worldwide”. It is a mind and body conditioning exercise program targeting the deep postural muscles. It aims to build up “core stability” and posture by strengthening abdominal and spinal muscles.

Pilates originates from early 1900’s from its inventor ‘Joesph Pilates’. As a child, he was very frail but developed a technique of physical fitness from studying Ancient Greek and Roman exercise regimes. Through a combination of yoga, meditation and rigorous exercise he improved his body shape. He went on to become a keen sportsman.

Over the years it has developed, with around one million people in the UK regularly taking classes!

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a gentle exercise method which aims to strengthen weak muscles, lengthen tight muscles and improve posture. This results in improved joint mobility, toned muscles and healthy natural posture. It is a very specific form of exercise which is safe, controlled and is low impact. It works on the principle of “ Gain but no Pain!!”

What are the benefits of Pilates?

Recent studies have shown low back pain sufferers report significant improvements after strengthening their “core muscles”.

The core muscles consist of the deepest layers of the abdominals, spinal and pelvic floor muscle groups. They act as a natural corset to maintain posture and protect the spine from strain.

Suffering from low back pain causes these muscles to weaken. With correct exercises, these muscles can be restored and the chance of pain returning can be reduced.

Most of all Pilates is not only beneficial if recovering from injury. Regular exercise can improve circulation, reduce stress and can improve sporting performance.

Who can benefit from it?

Anyone can benefit from Pilates as it is a very gentle, low impact form of exercise. It is particularly beneficial for those suffering low back pain. Pre and post natal clients should liaise with class teachers as they require specific input before attendance.

The Eight Principles Of Pilates

Pilates is based on eight principles:

  1. Relaxation
  2. Alignment
  3. Control
  4. Precision
  5. Routine
  6. Breathing
  7. Centring
  8. Flowing movement

What sort of exercises do I do?

Pilates focuses on building your body’s core stability muscles and postural strength. The exercises are predominantly done on an exercise mat. There are a series of low impact, high repetition stretches and conditioning exercises. These are predominantly body weight but can involve resistance bands, foam rollers or exercise balls.

Pilates goes far beyond your core muscles. It raises awareness of how your body moves and works muscles all over the body. It gets your mind and body working in harmony.

Getting Started With Pilates

The best way to get started with Pilates is to join a class at The Physio Group. You will learn the basics from a physio led pilates instructor. We can also provide 1-1 or small group sessions. For more details contact our office on 028302 69733

We can supply all Pilates mats and equipment used in the class. We do recommend though that you wear comfortable, loose clothing.