Pilates has been one of the hottest exercise programs among those who want to slim down without bulking up. This series of stretches and flexes was aimed at working on your long muscles, strengthening your back, and toning your body.
However, a lot of people either find Pilates intimidating or too easy. Some think that the exercise can be so tough on them that they might quit right off the bat, while other look at Pilates as unchallenging because it does not involve any obvious resistance or weights.
But there are a lot of reasons why you should try Pilates. Not only you would get motivated into doing the Hundreds for the first time, but also make it a healthy habit.
Everyone can benefit from Pilates
Pilates is one of the few exercise programs that individuals from different fitness levels can appreciate, from couch potatoes to seasoned athletes. It does not make you grasp for air unlike aerobic workouts, but you do feel the sweat coming out of your body. Beginners can try the basic positions, adjusting your posture as you advance for a more challenging exercise.
Pilates helps you look lighter
Even in your first weeks of Pilates training, you realize how your posture is being corrected. And with proper posture, you can actually appear five to ten pounds thinner. Unlike other exercise programs, you do not leave what you have learned in Pilates in the studio as you try in incorporate all the elements into your daily life, from engaging your abdominals, standing tall, relaxing your shoulders, and so on.
You only need light equipment
Traditionally, Pilates is done in big and bulky equipment, but that was long ago. Nowadays, you can train yourself in Pilates right in the comfort of your own home using a rubber mat, mini ball, foam roller, and resistance bands. They may appear small and lightweight, but they actually help you optimize your Pilates exercise moves especially when using your own body weight as a resistance. You will learn how to use these equipment in your first weeks of training.
Stretch and strengthen at the same time
Many fitness junkies would skip stretching without realizing that it is very beneficial to our muscles, joints, and range of motion. But unlike the usual stretching, Pilates lets you stretch while moving your limbs, and you really feel your muscles extend the whole time. Also, most of these stretches actually strengthen your muscles at the same time. For instance, stretching your one leg up while lying on the mat is also a great in strengthening your lower abdominals, all while extending your hamstrings as well.
Develop your core
Pilates is one of the few exercise programs that define your core-which consists of your abs, lower back, hips, and thighs. Core strengthening not only give you a defined and flat abdominals, but also improve your balance.
Eliminate lower back pain
Studies have shown that Pilates helps in reducing and alleviating lower back pain, as a lot of postures activate your back muscles. As you strengthen your lower back, these muscles also support your weak spine and eliminate the pain.