Chiropractor, Dr. Alexander Jimenez talks about strengthening the body without pain through pilates.
More than 20 years ago in a small walk up studio with hardwood floors that are creaky, several dancers and exercise enthusiasts would join several times for ‘ballet exercise’. In actuality, the motions of Joseph Pilates (Pil-lah-tees) (1880-1967) were in practice. The advantages from his approach removed stress, provided physical and mental balance, and helped to assemble in each individual streamlined and a strong musculature.
Joseph Pilates’ exercise philosophy can help women and men of any age. It’s especially advantageous to individuals who recognize the importance of providing a business support system for the backbone. Its focus is placed by the essence of Pilates on what’s termed the body’s ‘powerhouse.’ Here is the abdominal region, the buttocks, hips and low back – the centre of the body. Pilates works the deep muscles in the body making a powerful centre.
His teachings, “The Art of Contrology” unites mind and body to create a direct connection to the muscles. Each movement that is precise needs mental concentration as well as physical control. The mind and body learn to work together as one harmonious unit. Muscles are stretched and lengthened while building strength through soft, non-impact exercises that, as perfected, are designed to flow in rhythm from one move into the following.
Although, Pilates has been related to odd looking apparatus made up of springs cables and pulleys, or equipment termed the Reformer and also the Cadillac, the foundation is the mat work. Instead of machines and weights, the body uses its own resistance.
The Pilates Philosophy
The Pilates philosophy incorporates basic principles some of which comprise control and concentration, respiration, and centering.
Concentration and Control includes visualizing the body as movement occurs. Each command that is mental sparks and teaches muscle control that, over time, can become exact. Engram is a medical term used to denote muscle memory, which is stored in the mind ‘s cerebrum. Like learning how to play a musical instrument, diligent practice results in wonderful music. In Pilates, emphasis is positioned on the grade of the motion, not the number of repetitions.
Centering focuses attention on the ‘power station’ – the energy source that flows outward to the extremities of the body. Anatomically, the spinal column is a significant component in the powerhouse. To support the spinal structures, its muscular system (i.e., gluteals, obliques, quadratus, trapezius, scalenes) must be powerful and flexible. Pilates mat work is made to build a strong basis for the entire spinal structure.
Breathing is taking in and expelling air. Breathing properly functions to oxygenate the entire body and cleanse it. Breathing needs complete inhalations and exhalations during the entire length of mat work or exercise when done correctly.
The Advantages Of Pilates
The advantages to be obtained from Pilates are numerous – learn the capability to keep up proper position, which leads to the entire well-being of the body – long, flexible muscles – increased joint range of movement – a flat lean stomach – enhanced circulation and stamina – better dexterity – this and more without pain and soreness often due to conventional forms of exercise.
To realize the numerous benefits Pilates offers does not mean buying clothing or special equipment. All that is needed is a willing disposition to improve the body. The exercises can be performed just about everywhere when completely stretched out the body fits. Many individuals who’ve started Pilates that are in the beginner level state how well they feel after only 8 or 10 sessions.
Check out Brooke Siler’s novel entitled The Pilates Body to find out more about Pilates. This is a superb novel and source for learning the essentials to begin Pilates without attending courses*. The illustrations, photographs and prompts Ms. Siler incorporates make the book easy to use at the mat. The Pilates exercises provided for the beginner, intermediate, and advanced participant are in her novel. Plus, an all-inclusive record of certified Pilates teachers (this is essential!) is provided by the end of her book.
*It is wise to consult with your doctor prior to starting any physical fitness or exercise plan.
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The information herein on "Pilates: Strengthen The Body Without Pain" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, or licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own healthcare decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified healthcare professional.
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Dr. Alex Jimenez DC, MSACP, CIFM*, IFMCP*, ATN*, CCST
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