group of women doing yoga

Pilates, Fitness Through Mindful Control

group of women doing yogaMost of us are concerned about our fitness, but in our busy world, exercise and health in general are often a side issue. As much as we can set our lives on auto pilot to focus on the most demanding aspects. It is only when we get too big for our clothes or see how we have changed in a photo, that fitness becomes one of those big issues. The key to fitting fitness into your life is to gain mindful control of your body, making exercise more efficient and focused. Pilates is convenient and does not require much equipment or memberships. But there are great classes you can take. Here are some of the benefits of Pilates.

Less Equipment: Most of us don’t have the room for a home gym in our house or apartment. Exercise machines are great, but they do take up space and they are usually designed for cardio or strength. Pilates has simple equipment, and all you really need is a mat. The focus of Pilates is technique. And for this you need to find some good instruction. YouTube is helpful, but personal instruction or classes will take you further. At a certain point you may even want to be an instructor yourself. You can get certified here. Whatever path you take, Pilates fits easily into almost any lifestyle.

Pilates is Adaptable: People of all ages can participate in Pilates because the exercises are highly adaptable. Even people who are confined to a bed can benefit from resistance and flexibility training. Age is also a non-issue. You are in control, as you learn mindful breathing and your true range of motion and ability. You can set the limits and discover what activities are the most restorative for you.

Mindful Breathing: Breathing is an essential focus of Pilates. When you practice, you discover how to exhale completely; to rid yourself of stale unhealthy air. And then replace it with clean, healthy air. It may seem elementary, but most of us breathe inefficiently and this creates a disadvantage in every situation, active or not.

Core Strength: The best way to build is to start with a strong foundation. The foundation of the body is the core, and the bones are the tools and levers. With training you will learn how to target your entire core and bring it into action. When your core is strong, you are strong, and the new posture will make you confident and sexy. It will also help you do everyday tasks with skill and grace. These changes in your body language will provide many benefits.

Flexibility: So many aches and pains that people suffer through are simply caused by over and under use of their muscle groups. For good health your whole body needs to be exercised, this can’t be done without the mindful control that can be learned through Pilates.

Pilates is now mainstream, and there are many ways to get some basic training. Almost any form of exercise is beneficial, but Pilates is designed to rebuild you from the core out, and to give you control, so that you are more aware of your body’s needs, and better able to target areas of concern.