Seity Collective Wellbeing made simple

18th march 2022

Pilates, the what, the why and how small movements can make a big change...


Originally introduced in the 1920’s by physical trainer Joseph Pilates, Pilates is now an engendered form of exercise around the world. Despite being initially designed to assist injured athletes and dancers return to normal fitness, Pilates quickly became a popular activity for the greater population through word of its effectiveness and results.

So, what is Pilates? A low-intensity exercise Pilates centres around the use of controlled movements aimed at enhancing capacity in areas of mobility, balance, flexibility and core strength. Its primary emphasis works on the improvement of deeper muscles, and is notably beneficial for those of the hips, abdomen, buttock and lower back. For those looking to enhance their muscle control and likewise stabilise their spine, Pilates is a great activity to look into.

Diverse in health benefits, Pilates has been shown to have special value to numerous populations, such as the elderly, injured and those with chronic pain. The following are just some of the most prominent health benefits Pilates has to offer.


Enhancing Balance

Pilates has an excellent capacity to improve balance. Through the body centering demands of the exercise, it promotes muscle alignment and posture. Frequent practice of positions that emphasise a use of balance are beneficial in improving related effectiveness in balance and proprioception. In fact, according to research, Pilates has an ability to effectively stabilise and strengthen core muscles, and can contribute to postural alignment. These effects translate into better balance control, as well as distal mobility and can thus translate to decreases in falls and an improved execution of functional activities.


Strengthens  Muscles

Pilates is unique in the way that it encourages the development of muscle strength through processes of eccentric contraction. Initiated by the elongation of muscles as a result of tension, eccentric contraction has been stated to promote greater improvements in strength, muscle mass and neural adaptations in multiple studies and reviews.

This results in common benefits of stronger and more toned muscles, as well as better abilities in controlled direction and resistance.


Pilates Increases Flexibility

Pilates is an effective exercise that assists in muscle flexibility through the integration of a range of motions that work on different areas of joints. In fact, many relevant studies suggest that individuals can augment their overall muscular endurance and flexibility through Pilates exercises of relatively low-intensity. This can prove to be extremely beneficial in contributing to better overall flexibility and range of motion, especially when done regularly. In this regard, Pilates can also be helpful in pain relief and is thus an excellent option for those with tight muscles.


Maintaining a healthy weight 

In company with its other health related benefits, Pilates has also been proven to have a significant ability to increase weight loss. A 2017 study of 37 overweight women between the ages of 30 and 50 years not only concluded that Pilates was effective in weight loss, but likewise had the capacity to contribute to reductions in BMI and physical toning.

When combined with a healthy eating schedule and aerobic activities, Pilates can assist in the control and management of weight in this regard.


Improves Posture

Pilates improves posture through the promotion of good alignment. Exercises which encourage structural and spinal musculature in the form of repeated exercises of this nature position the body to be better able to maintain good posture and physical alignment. Through the repeated practice of these low-intensity movements, one can develop better movement and postural patterns through the power of increased muscular capacity and better habits.


Increases Energy

Pilates helps stimulate the whole body, propagating effective blood flow and rejuvenating the muscular system through sensations of tension and release. As a result, the body’s systems are refreshed, muscles are relaxed and energy is acquired. How? Through its focus on breathing, Pilates has been revered by a sea of research for its ability to improve cardiorespiratory capacity, something that naturally contributes to enhanced blood flow, oxygen flow and the stimulation of feel-good hormones. Due to Pilates’ low-impact nature, the exercise rarely causes fatigue, and thus simply results in a boost of these positive cardiorespiratory effects that can improve overall mood and energy.

Whether you have an injury or want to improve your fitness, Pilates helps you stay on point.

When looking to wholefully reap the benefits of Pilates and everything it has to offer for your overall health, it is always best to enlist a professional. We recommend acquiring a qualified London pilates trainer who can effectively assist you in your Pilates journey and process of improvement.