Pilates is a non-impact, balanced exercise method that improves core stability, flexibility, posture and breathing control.
Small personalized classes are instructed at the Clinic using Floor Programs, Swiss Balls, and spring loaded, sliding 'Pilates Reformer' equipment. To learn Pilates requires more personal supervision than other exercise programs. We achieve this by reduced class numbers so that each new move is monitored to make sure it is done correctly and safely.
Many people including dancers and elite athletes use Pilates exercises to optimise performance and prevent injuries.
Joseph Pilates (German gymnast) established a form of exercise rehabilitation for dancers in New York City in the 1920s.
In the USA now over 5 million people do Pilates programs.
This form of exercise has now become increasingly popular in Australia.
It is now used by Physios, Pilates instructors, Dance Australia, numerous NRL, AFL and professional teams clubs as well as many athletes recovering from injury or improving core stability.
Type of Exercises
Pilates may consist of either a 'Floor Program' or uses specific Pilates equipment eg: 'Reformer'
'Reformer' equipment consists of a slide table attached to a variable number of springs to add resistance. Straps and ropes attached through pulleys also provide a variety of movements and exercises for the arms and legs.
A number of different exercises are instructed while controlling the core muscles of the stomach, back and buttocks.
These low impact, controlled movements develop stability and control in the spine and all muscle groups.
Pilates exercises focus on mind/ body control, muscle balance, correct body alignment and teach proper breathing patterns.
Effects on the Body
- Improves strength, endurance and control in the 'core' muscles.
- Exercising with Pilates gives muscle length by developing muscle elasticity and joint mobility. Most exercise workouts tend to build short bulky muscles and do not address the weak/strong muscle imbalances. In the Pilates program, a balanced conditioning is the goal. Training different groups of muscles at the same time, you can retrain you body to move in a safer more effective way.
- Increases blood flow and general well being. The mind/body connection gets your mind in tune with your body. By emphasising proper breathing, correct spinal and pelvic alignment, and complete concentration on smooth flowing movement, you become acutely aware of how your body feels, where it is in space, and how to control its movement, consciously and unconsciously.
- Assists injury prevention due to stronger core stability.
- Can improve sports performance as movement patterns are more efficient.
- The quality of movement is valued over quantity of repetitions. Proper breathing is essential. Correct breathing helps you execute movements with maximum power and efficiency. Last, but not least, learning to breathe properly can reduce stress.
- It is a refreshing mind/body workout - challenging, yet safe.