Pilates is a form of low-impact exercise that is becoming increasingly popular. With so many types, including mat and reformer Pilates, it can be difficult to know where to begin. We’re going to give you a rundown on what makes this form of exercise so popular and beneficial.
What is Pilates?
Pilates workouts tend to be 45 minutes to an hour long and aim to strengthen muscles while improving postural alignment and flexibility. Pilates can be completed with or without equipment and involves low, precise movements and breath control. Whilst Pilates does target your full body it primarily works your core.
What are Pilates’ benefits?
Pilates is useful because it’s a full body exercise that strengthens and stabilises your core. It encourages you to move efficiently while improving your posture, flexibility and mobility. This will allow you to move better during everyday tasks. Pilates can also improve mental health because it is all about mind to body connection.
Mat vs Reformer Pilates
Mat classes take place on the floor, whereas reformer classes are completed on a machine called a Pilates reformer, which is a sliding platform complete with stationary foot bar, springs, and pulleys that provide resistance.
A mat class is typically better for beginners as it provides a great entry point. By using your own body as resistance, you’ll learn how to engage specific muscles to do exercises with proper form.
Where to do Pilates
Pilates classes are useful to ensure your form is correct and group sessions also provide a social aspect. However, there are also some fantastic free and paid virtual classes you can try online to see if Pilates is for you.