Have you ever been at a stage where you want to try Pilates for yourself but aren’t entirely sure what it involves, or whether it’s suitable for your needs? If so, you’ve come to the right place!
Pilates is a type of low-impact exercise that has many amazing benefits for the body, ranging from an increased sense of balance to a stronger core. It’s also great for helping Pilate-goers to maintain their current weight.
But is Pilates truly enough to keep you fit? We tell all in this article.
Read on to find out some more information!
What Is Pilates?
This exercise concentrates the effort on strengthening the body, with a huge focus on core strength. Not only does this improve overall well-being but it also increases general fitness levels — all without pushing your body to its breaking point.
The core values of the exercise are defined by its creator, Joseph Pilates, as a way of coordinating the mind, body, and spirit.
And, much like yoga, Pilates emphasizes balance, flexibility, and posture, alongside the connection between the mind and body.
Who Can Do Pilates?
Pilates can be modified to be a challenging workout or a gentle form of strength training, which means practically everyone can get along well with Pilates. This means it’s suitable for fitness fanatics and beginners alike, provided they have some interest in the exercise.
Does Pilates Help Improve Your Fitness?
The short answer is yes, it does. And it’s more than enough to stay fit!
Getting in shape by using Pilates is a great step toward looking after your overall health; both physical and mental. It’ll also help you to strengthen your body in all aspects.
If you do Pilates, you can expect to see a couple of major changes in terms of your body and physical fitness. Some of these might include:
- Strengthened Core Engagement
- Stronger Body
- Makes You Lean and Toned
- Better Balance
- Improves Posture
- Better Flexibility
Can Pilates Help Your Mental Health?
You may have gathered that Pilates has some incredible physical benefits that keep the body at peak fitness. Yet it also does many amazing things for the mind which deserve a mention.
For instance, Pilates helps you to achieve a sense of empowerment, of purpose, in each move that you make. It’s low-impact which means you have time to focus on clearing your mind instead of rushing to change your positions every couple of seconds.
Generally, many people find that the physical activity of Pilates helps them to maintain a positive mental attitude which, by default, lends itself well to boosting morale.
Is It Good For Weight Loss?
Practicing Pilates can be very beneficial for your health and may help you to maintain a healthier weight. However, it is not an effective weight loss tool by itself. This is because you typically burn fewer calories in a traditional Pilates class than you would in a cardio session.
Despite this, Pilates is still a pretty good way to stay fit — especially if you aim to become stronger and more centered in your body, rather than losing fat.
How Many Calories Does Pilates Burn?
On that note, you may want to know a bit about how much of an effective calorie burner Pilates is to get an idea of whether it’s good for staying fit or not.
The number of calories that you will burn in a Pilates session depends on your current weight, the level of difficulty of the class, and whether you’re doing a reformer or mat class.
For a 150-pound individual, a single 50-minute Pilates class on the mats at a beginner level will burn around 175 calories, whereas an advanced class would burn around 250 calories.
You will burn far more calories in any type of Pilates class where you can successfully work out and elevate your heart rate.
So, although Pilates is not the best exercise for burning calories, the full-body workout that you get and the incredible fitness benefits that it provides to your body are more than worth the effort.
Levels Of Pilates Workouts
There’s no doubt about it: Pilates is a progressive exercise. And if you’re consistent enough with your training on the mat, you’ll easily be able to add some new moves and increase the intensity of each workout as you progress.
You may even find that the overall pace, stability, and strength of your workout gradually increase as you regularly practice the exercise!
Once you’ve gained some experience and have higher and more stable fitness levels, you can then progress to more challenging situations that require the use of Pilates equipment, for example.
This will be a true testament to your dedication to Pilates and will show whether your hard work is paying off!
How Often To Practice Pilates
It takes about 45 minutes to do a classic Pilates mat workout at a consistent tempo. You also need to factor in some valuable warm-up and cool-down time before and after the workout, respectively.
Add in time for a shower after the workout and it’s easy to see why Pilates demands so much time. But it’s still more than worth it!
To get in shape with Pilates, a minimum of 3 sessions per week is the standard. Mat work should be the core focus (try to squeeze in a short 10-minute workout each day if possible) with a focus on equipment once or twice a week.
Eventually, the goal will be to do Pilates anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour each day, but this is something that you can gradually work toward.
Stay Motivated With Pilates
Remaining motivated with Pilates is crucial if you want to stay fit!
If you’re willing to commit to doing Pilates regularly, you will soon start to see some benefits in terms of staying fit. But, like other exercises, it may become a little boring at times to just stick with the same couple of Pilates moves.
Feel free to spice things up a bit by changing up the equipment that you use, or trying out some new (and more difficult) moves.
If you’ve been doing Pilates correctly and have genuinely been improving or maintaining your increased fitness levels, you’ll likely have no issues introducing more complex stuff into your routine.
Even if you only have the time for a short Pilates workout, opting to stick with this for the long term will do wonders for improving your dedication, focus, and overall fitness.
And remember: even a short workout is better than no workout at all!
All in all, Pilates is a type of exercise that provides individuals with more than enough variation and challenge to stay fit.
Although Pilates doesn’t burn as many calories as conventional cardio such as walking, for example, it does other things for both the mind and body that are just as essential. Notably, it helps to relax and clear the mind which allows for more focus on the activity at hand.
Safe to say, you will never go wrong by introducing Pilates into your life!