Pilates is a type of exercise that focuses on overall body conditioning with an emphasis on core strength and stability. The technique seeks to improve muscle tone and strength around the joints, which reduces any associated instability or pain. As the training can be adjusted to suit all ages and levels of fitness it has become very popular and is widely used in rehabilitation after injury, illness or surgery. Weather for postural correction or as part of sports training programme there are benefits for people from all backgrounds.

There has been compelling research over the years that a stronger core leads to improved sporting performance, through better power transfer to the limbs from a stable core. As a result many sporting professionals from football to tennis now incorporate Pilates into their training programmes.

Due to the non-impact nature of Pilate’s exercises it has become increasingly popular amongst pregnant women. Prior to giving birth Pilates helps gently maintain fitness throughout the pregnancy, improves posture, reduces back pain and strengthens the pelvic floor muscles. Post-natal, it helps recover fitness, particularly abdominal toning, and lowers stress levels.

The adaptability of Pilates training is one reason its popularity has only increased since Joseph Pilates developed it more than 80 years ago. Weather you have musculoskeletal pain or wish to improve your sporting performance the benefits of Pilates are many. Some of which include;

  • Increased core stability
  • Improved muscle tone and control.
  • Improved proprioception.
  • Better fitness and endurance
  • Improved flexibility
  • Better posture
  • Relives stress and boosts sense of wellbeing.
  • Greater power generation in limbs from strong core.
  • Better recovery rate from injury.

Pilates is often recommended by therapists as it has a low impact on the joints and requires very little athletic ability or equipment to participate. The exercises pose low risk of injury yet will challenge all your major muscle groups. It is a calming, meditative programme of exercise suitable for everyone. For the more experienced there are ways to progress the difficulty of Pilates exercises to maintain your improvement. Your therapist may recommend Pilates to you as part of your exercise rehabilitation programme, to either safely improve your general health or to specifically target a functional weakness. Conditions that commonly benefit from Pilates as part of an exercise rehabilitation programme include;

  • Posture correction
  • Muscle weakness
  • Lower back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Shoulder pain
  • Sacro-iliac pain
  • Hip and Knee pain
  • Joint hypermobility
  • Muscle tightness, especially hamstring.

Whatever your age, current level of fitness or goals for training, Pilates has something to offer. As part of a broader rehabilitation programme or to relieve stress and boost your general health, our experienced instructors can help you get the most out of your Pilates training. If you would like more information on how Pilates can help you, or want to book an appointment, please email nick@nickcastle.co.uk. or phone us on 0207 386 9777.

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