So.... why should I do Pilates anyway?
A good stretch. Yoga. A workout just for girls. A workout for old people. Just for ballerinas. Too scary to try.
These are all things I hear ALL. THE. TIME when it comes to talking about Pilates. And you know what? None of them are true haha! (Well, I guess the stretch part is... but Pilates is so much more!!!) Here's a little history lesson ;)
Pilates was originally made by a man (Joseph Pilates). Good ol Joseph began as a very sicly child and with a lot of hard work became a boxer, a self defense instructor, and a circus performer. He created the first Pilates workout during WW1 using springs from hospital beds as a way to rehab himself and his fellow performers and soldiers! Originally, 60% of people who did Pilates were actually men.
OK, so lets bring it back to this century. Today, Pilates has evolved quite a bit and we don't use hospital bed springs anymore. BUT its still an amazing way to rehab from injuries! I have yet to meet a person who can't benefit from Pilates. The workouts are created to even out imbalances in your body, create a strong core (say goodbye to back pain), lengthen your muscles, and generally work on functional mobility! Will you get stretched? Yes. But its more about your muscles learning to move the way your body is meant to.
Another amazing attribute of Pilates is how versatile it is. I do Pilates every day and have been for many years.... and still am learning new workouts! I have less back pain, more shoulder strength (something I have had to work very hard on), and increased my running speed significantly. Every workout is full body... but starts with your core. Without a strong core, your body is going to suffer! Pilates teaches you the best way to activate your abs correctly so that you are maximizing your time. It also teaches you how to build your core from the inside out so that you are not making your stomach look bigger than it is... I've seen this mistake so many times, don't get me started on traditional ab workouts. (Lets be honest, how many are just dong mindless sit ups and not getting anywhere- we've all been there haha)
OK, lets talk about Pilates being too scary looking to try. Trust me, I get that. The reformer machine can look terrifying! And I'll be honest, I have met some pretty intense Pilates instructors. But you know what? It doesn't have to be that way. I really do think that Pilates is for everyone. Not just "fit" people. The amazing thing is that Pilates is customized FOR you. So if you want a hard workout, you got it. You need more mobility/flexibility? done. Need a beginner program? I got you.
The hardest part for any exercise, Pilates included, is getting yourself there. So, book your first session. Try it and feel for yourself how much better your body can feel!