Where does Pilates Come From?
Joseph Pilates is the founder of this useful form of exercise, which is based on his believe that the spine plays the most vital role in the body, as it is this part of the body that balances and carries the overall structure of the body. He designed Pilates keeping this in mind, and the focus of Pilates is to strengthen and improve the muscular structure around the base of the spine.
The exercises all focus on the core muscles around the abdomen, pelvic structure and back, and most of the movements in Pilates are designed to involve the core muscles. This brings a variety of benefits to the body and mind, and over the years, a large mainstream following has developed, making Pilates a very popular form of exercise practiced by young and old.
Pilates has become one of the most popular exercise styles and is widely taught around the world. The exercises focus on increasing the strength of the core muscles and flexibility of the body, and they can be performed at many different levels, with the complexity of the movements increasing as fitness levels, core strength and range of movement increase. It fosters better overall health and mental well-being, and often it creates a better sense of body awareness, which helps with everyday movements and posture. The exercises build muscle without building bulk, and the end result is long, lean, strong muscles that are particularly useful for dancers and gymnasts.
Pilates research indicates that exercises can be adapted for specific people to work with injuries and to help with rehabilitation of injuries, and that it has a range of benefits for those who regularly do Pilates. As it strengthens the core muscles and elongates the muscles, it builds better a posture and leaner appearance. It is very helpful when it comes to the prevention and recovery of an injury. Flexibility and range of movement are increased, and circulation and balance are improved. Pilates research also indicates a range of mental benefits, including a better awareness of self, increased sense of well-being, higher confidence levels, a sense of accomplishment and the alleviation of depression. It is often said that only ten sessions is enough to make one feel better, twenty sessions are needed to make one look better, and only thirty sessions are required to get a completely new body.
Pilates can also be used very effectively to decrease the risk of deconditioning of hospital patients while being bedridden for long periods of time.
A Pilates research study carried out in Canada in 2003 indicated that hospital patients who participated in a variety of Pilates exercises in their beds were able to recover more rapidly than the control group that was given passive exercises that limited the range of movement. Many more Pilates research studies have been conducted on the method itself, and indications are that Pilates provides overall health benefits to the body and mind, that it increases recovery abilities, and that it helps with rehabilitation of injuries. It is also possible for sedentary people to perform a range of exercises that are non-impact and gentle, which will increase their ability to heal.