Benefits of Pilates 4

Q&A with trainers at Better Bodies Pilates

How do Pilates and Yoga differ from each other? 

A very common question!  Both are great for mind-body connection, balance, flexibility and strength. Yoga is done on a mat using small props. Studio Pilates utilizes an array of specialized equipment which helps people get into and sustain positions they might not be able to do otherwise. Likewise, aerial yoga provides a “hammock” which acts in a similar fashion to Pilates equipment.

What does Pilates target?

The equipment, such as the Pilates Reformer, used in Studio Pilates, helps bring awareness to ones deep core muscles even when the exercise seems like an arm or leg exercise.  The focus is how it relates not just to an arm or leg, but how to transfer that energy to the core muscles as well.  Pilates adds an element of strength with stretch and eventually all moves are full body integrated.

How in shape and flexible does someone need to be to start this type of workout for the first time? 

Pilates is often referred to as the “bridge between PT and PE”.  Certified Pilates instructors, utilizing the Pilates machines, can work with clients who are rehabbing from surgeries, accidents and conditions. Many Pilates clients are currently in PT or just finishing.  These clients start out with private sessions until strength and balance are improved. Pilates is perfect for people who have never exercised or are trying to get the edge in their sport; golf, tennis, football, etc.

How is Ariel yoga different than traditional yoga? What benefits does it have? 

Aerial yoga provides a yoga hammock which is suspended from the ceiling and provides an added element of security when practicing moves that one may or may not be able to do on a mat.  The advantage of this is that many experienced yogis are able to find a new depth in their poses and new yogis are able to achieve poses that they were not able to do before.  It should be noted that Aerial Yoga is not the same as aerial silks.  Aerial yoga is is done low to the ground and utilizes a systematic approach using Yoga poses.

How can Pilates and yoga help with previous injuries or aches and pains?

Many aches and pains are do from postural asymmetries and imbalances. The Pilates “Reformer” is named such, because it was designed to “Reform” the body by “informing” the body.  Learning to move in a more balanced fashion, while stretching and strengthening the body almost always immediately helps with aches and pains.  The other factor is the focus on strengthening the core which helps alleviate back pain.

What is the number one take-away you want our readers to know about the benefits of Pilates or yoga?  

Studio Pilates is for “Every Body”.  The focus is on strengthening the Core from the inside out.  Bottom line, “strong cores do more”!  Whether it’s training for a marathon, improving a golf or tennis game, or picking up a Grandchild, its a fun, focused way to exercise individually or in a small group setting.  It is perfect for people who are intimidated at the gym or don’t want a boot camp experience.