Pilates is becoming more popular - here's why...
16 May 2023 16:42PM by Lydia Melmeth - Pilates Activist
Everyone and their dog is into Pilates at the moment. You can’t escape it – and truthfully, we love it. (Have you seen how many Mat Pilates and Reformer Pilates classes we have each week?!) This low-impact workout, created by Joseph Pilates, has been rising in popularity over recent years with celebrities like Harry Styles and Beyoncé getting behind it and a brand-new TikTok trend going viral which claims that 2 days of Pilates a week, alongside 3 days of strength training and 1 day of cardio or conditioning is the perfect weekly workout blend.
If you’re not doing Pilates, we’ve got to ask: why not? There’s a reason everyone is loving it and we asked our Pilates Activist Lydia Melmeth to share why our members think it’s a great workout too!
It's great for building strength
Typically, people think that the best workouts are the ones that make you sweat. And, while we love those, sometimes it’s just not that kind of day. This is where Pilates comes in. If you’ve ever given it a go, you’ll know the feeling of getting off the mat or reformer bed and muscles are hurting that you didn’t even know existed.
Pilates focuses on controlled movement. It’s about combining breath work and moving fluidly to get the best results. And because you’re concentrating on keeping your body controlled, you’ll be engaging your core muscles – for pretty much the whole class!
It's a full body workout
If you haven’t got as much time to hit the gym as you’d like, then you’ll be looking for a full body workout. Pilates is a wonderful way to tone and lengthen all parts of your body. It primarily focuses on exercises that target your core, glutes, hip muscles, lower and upper back as well as inner thigh muscles. But, that doesn’t mean that you won’t feel a good ache in your arms and shoulders in the morning too!
It's low impact
Some people associate low-impact exercises with being better for older adults and not being as ‘good’ of a workout as something like HIIT. But, that’s not true. You don’t need to be drenched in sweat to have a good workout – though you can still get pretty sweaty in Pilates.
The low impact element of Pilates actually means that it works well for people who do a lot of sport that creates impact on their joints, such as running. If you’re a runner, having a strong and stabilised core will help you run faster or longer and with fewer injuries. And if you can get that without putting extra strain on your joints and muscles, then Pilates is calling your name.
If your body doesn’t quite work how it used to, Pilates is also a perfect choice of regular movement. You’ll get stronger while also improving your flexibility, stamina and overall mobility at a level that works for you.
It's a great stress reliever
Everyone knows that exercising produces endorphins that get your body feeling good. But Pilates takes things one step further. Rather than just relying on endorphins, a key component of Pilates is matching your movement to your breath. By doing this, you’re more aware of how your interior and exterior react and complement each other.
And just being conscious of your breath can also help you identify where you are holding tension as well as encouraging you to take deeper and more fulfilling breaths.
There's something for everyone
Think you’re going to be working the same moves week after week? Think again. Pilates is great for helping you improve your strength, mobility and flexibility and that means that when you get better, there are more progressions that you can try. Your instructor will be constantly encouraging you to challenge your body when you feel comfortable with performing a certain move.
So, there you have it. Whatever your goal, it sounds like Pilates is perfect for you. Try adding it to your workout routine by coming along to one of our Mat Pilates or Reformer Pilates classes. If you've never been before, our Mat Pilates Foundations and Reformer Pilates Foundations classes are a good place to start. See you there!