Joseph H. Pilates developed the Pilates Method in the 1920’s. The Pilates Method is an exercise system that focuses on improving flexibility and strength without building bulk.
The Pilates Method benefits the body in many ways:
- Increases overall flexibility, strength and endurance
- Connects the mind and body through exercise
- Builds the “powerhouse” or core – the abdominal muscles, lower back muscles and buttocks
- Helps to develop lean muscle mass, vital to burning fat and losing weight
- Increases circulation and restores natural posture
- Instills self-confidence
Pilates apparatus Versus Pilates mat
Pilates can be done either as floor or mat exercises or on specially designed Pilates equipment. Pilates mat classes are usually done in a group setting and almost completely done on the floor.
In the mat exercises strength is developed by working against gravity. On the apparatus you are either working with or against the resistance of springs depending on your needs. The mat exercises can be done without any props but balls, bands or magic circles can be introduced to challenge or assist your workout. Working on the apparatus gives a very different feeling and can be beneficial to both the elite athlete and people with injuries.
One of the most important concepts in Pilates is stability and working on the apparatus creates a strong and stable core quickly and with advancement in the exercises – challenges your stability. The Pilates apparatus uses spring resistance creating a longer, leaner body with a strong center.