What is Pilates and is it The Right Exercise For You?
Pilates and Physical Therapy in Canton
Welcome to BodyFit Physical Therapy's resource about Pilates!
Pilates. What exactly is it?
For those that have never tried Pilates name can conjure up all sorts of images in one’s mind of bodies being twisted and contorted on different machines. In reality, those specific exercises are very effective means of strengthening and stretching the body. Often special Pilates machines are used to provide resistance to the body and allow particular muscles to be focused on, but Pilates exercises can also be done on mats, without any special equipment. Body alignment, muscle balance, core strength (abdominals and lower back) as well as appropriate breathing are key components of Pilates. Because of their focus on core strength and stability (abdominal and lower back), Pilates exercises are often used by Physical Therapists to assist patients who are recovering from any type of injury, but particularly low back pain.
Pilates has an interesting history
Its origins are in the beginning of the 20th century when a German man, Joseph Pilates, developed a group of exercises that he used to progress the state of his own body and mind. As a child he was plagued with many illnesses including asthma, rickets, and rheumatic fever. He was introduced at a young age to gymnastics by his father and also eventually got involved in other sports such as boxing as a form of combatting his many illnesses. As he began studying the best methods of exercise to hone his own health he developed an admiration for the concept of a balanced mind, body and spirit. He used special ‘apparatus’ to help provide resistance for the exercises he performed in order to maximize strength. Near the beginning of WWI, Joseph Pilates was rigging bed springs to hospital beds in order for bedridden patients to exercise with resistance. An influenza breakout at the time saw thousands of deaths but not one of the patients who was using his form of exercise died, which he claimed was due to his specialized form of exercise! Touting its success, the exercise regime soon became popular in the dance community around Germany and when Joseph immigrated to the USA, he and his wife opened a fitness studio which happened to share an address with the New York City Ballet. The craze took off, and the rest, as they say is history.
Pilates is all about body alignment, muscle balance, core strength and appropriate breathing. Because of their focus on core strength and stability (abdominal and lower back), Pilates exercises are often used by Physical Therapists to help patients who are recovering from any type of injury, but particularly low back pain.
If you are interested in learning more about Pilates and would like to know if this form of exercise is right for you, then reach out to BodyFit Physical Therapy by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling Cindy at 860-507-7365 to schedule a FREE Discovery Visit-A Consultation with a Physical Therapist.