Pilates exercises are some of the most popular physical training, of the time, conceived a century ago by Joseph Pilates and designed to increase physical and mental endurance of those who practice them. Beside their benefits for a good body shape, Pilates exercises also help to combat stress and treat some medical conditions.
Pilates system was designed by its inventor or as a treatment for various diseases, so it is not surprising that it underlies the medical gymnastics of today. Pilates methods are also used in kinesiotherapy and are studied in the physical education universities worldwide. Let’s see what Pilates training involves and how you can easily understand it.
What are Pilates Exercises
Pilates concept combines several types of special exercises for toning the muscles of the trunk, whose excellent condition reduces the risk of injury, improve posture and prevent back pain.
Also, Pilates exercises help practitioners to better control their muscles, to develop flexibility, coordination, and their breathing. For best results, the Pilates promotes the increasing of the inhaled oxygen quantity and full expiration at the right time; in other words you need to exhale simultaneously with effort and inhale on return, with your abs strained.
Pilates workouts involve a series of movements that work every area of the body, focusing especially by small groups of muscles, often neglected.
Force Center in Pilates Exercises
All Pilates exercises are performed with the establish of the force center (“core”). Practitioners lying on their backs with the knees bent to 90 degrees and feet on the floor, tilt the pelvis toward the floor until the lower back touches the ground. Then they lift their back, so that they form an arch between the floor and the spine. Pelvis should remain flat on the floor throughout the exercise, so coaches ask performers, imagine that hold a cup of water on the lower abdomen that should not spill out.
Breathing in Pilates Exercises
How you breathe is very important for movement and control in Pilates.
Tie a scarf loosely around your ribs, breathe through your nose and try to mentally follow air flow, feel it the thorax, not in the chest (scarf becomes tight in the chest when you breathe in total).
When you exhale, keep your abs contracted and release the air slowly, with little effort.
Only in this way, you breathe correctly performing Pilates exercises.