Joseph Pilates built his method of exercise upon certain principles. These principles are the reason why the pilates exercise program has worked so well for so many individuals. From the core principles introduced by the founder in the early 1900s to the modern interpretations of these principles, the pilates concepts help to promote total body wellness, and when applied to an exercise routine can help increase stamina, flexibility and overall physical fitness.
In pilates, the mind and the body work together to achieve the maximize fitness benefits. Each movement, each stretch demands a full physical and mental engagement. The mind helps to focus and control the body's movements. Because of this, it's very difficult to do a pilates exercise halfway. When the body and mind are working in harmony together, the simplest exercise can have a great impact on your fitness level.
Pilates training focuses on the core or the muscles that helps to stabilize and strengthen the rest of the body. Pilates believed that the core was the center of the body's power. In order to realize the body's full potential, the core must be perfectly aligned and strong. Core training helps the body in so many way. It prevents injuries, improves posture, promotes flexibility and regulates the bowels.
Control is one of the guiding principles of pilates. Many other exercise programs focus on doing as many repetitions as efficiently as possible. Pilates, on the other hand, is more concerned with quality than quantity. The exercises require each movement to be perfectly controlled. If you are centered and your body and mind are fully in tune with one another, you can contol each muscle and each part of your body.
Precision is in the same vein as control. Pilates exercises require you to put the body in the correct position for proper alignment and balance. Precision helps you avoid misalignments and poor posturing that can cause injuries.
Like yoga, pilates places a great emphasis on the importance on proper breathing. Joseph Pilates felt like breathing was the most fundamental part of the pilates regime. Each exercise in pilates has a specific breathing pattern that increases the effectiveness of each movement. The benefits of good breathing are not exclusive to pilates. Breathing allows oxygen to flow to the blood and awaken the senses. Good breathing results in improved circulation and relieves the body of tension. It also promotes greater concentration and focus. By using breath correctly, you can increase the effectiveness of any physical activity.
Pilates asks you to develop a full awareness of how your body works and how it moves through space. The benefits of such a program include increased focus, increased body control and improved posture. Moreover, because pilates approaches exercises holistically, it benefits your entire being - mind, body and soul. Even a beginner can experience an improvement in their overall physical and mental well being.