When most people think of exercising, their minds probably turn to fast-paced exercises like running or high-intensity weight training. However, you’d be surprised how many benefits you can get from slower-paced exercises like Pilates. Pilates routines use more than 500 exercises that come from disciplines like yoga and ballet, and the fact that there are so many movements to choose from is one reason it offers so many benefits. Here are three of the benefits you could get just by doing Pilates once a week.
1. Improved flexibility
Many of us remember being able to touch our toes as a kid, and this level of flexibility may be something that you look back on with nostalgia. One amazing benefit of Pilates is that you can improve your flexibility greatly with just one session a week.
Flexibility is all about keeping the muscles loose and limber, but many people tend to skimp on their stretches even when they work out regularly. Doing Pilates one day a week can help get you back in the habit of stretching, and it can help teach you stretches and flexibility exercises that directly target your specific flexibility issues.
2. Increased core muscle strength
The core muscles are those in your stomach, sides, back and pelvic floor, and in many people, these muscles are far weaker than they should be. This is a serious issue because the core muscles help with vital tasks like supporting the spine and allowing you to maintain a healthy posture.
With a once-a-week Pilates session, you can benefit from movements that help increase the strength of core muscles. These movements are usually gentle and place low levels of stress on the body, and this means they can be used by beginners, arthritis sufferers and other people who can’t do more vigorous, high-impact core exercises. By using Pilates to increase core strength, you can also improve posture and reduce stress on your spine and joints.
3. Clear your mind
Remember in The Matrix when Neo was told, “Free your mind”? Well, that’s actually another benefit that using Pilates once a week can offer. You won’t be able to slow time or anything, but Pilates can help you deal with the mental stress many of us deal with every day. Mental stress is an issue because it can lead to other mental issues like depression, but it can also affect you physically.
Stress causes your body to release a hormone called cortisol, and having high cortisol levels in your body for long periods of time can increase your risk of heart disease, obesity and other physical problems. The slow, meditative movements of Pilates can help you let go of your mental stress and free your mind and body from the negative effects of high cortisol.
SOL Physical Therapy offers you the opportunity to try once-a-week Pilates
At SOL Physical Therapy, we offer many types of physical therapy, and this includes having physical therapists that are also Pilates instructors. You can come see us once a week and work through a Pilates routine designed to:
- Improve flexibility
- Increase core strength
- Reduce mental stress
- Improve muscle balance
You can even get these benefits more rapidly by scheduling more than one Pilates session a week.
Get started with your Pilates session at SOL Physical Therapy today. Contact our team for more information or to schedule an appointment.