How to Maximize Your Pilates Workout

4 steps to build a better body with Pilates

Pilates, a workout once reserved for professional dancers because of its ability to strengthen and lengthen muscles, has become increasingly popular in studios and health clubs around the country. Part of the reason for this phenomena is the fact that Pilates workouts are low-impact and allow individuals to tone muscles without becoming too bulky, benefits specifically popular among women. To fully reap the rewards of Pilates, you need to maximize your workout by paying attention to its core principles. Follow this advice, and you’ll be on your way.

Step 1: Focus on your posture

Many Pilates routines focus on aligning the entire body. To do this most effectively, it’s important to focus on your posture. Additionally, by making sure your posture is correct during the exercises, you’ll avoid injury and improve your posture in your daily activities. Having good posture can help alleviate back issues and other stresses on the body.

Step 2: Pay attention to your body

Another way to maximize your Pilates workout is by consciously practicing body awareness. Notice each breath and movement, and how the exercises help you move more gracefully. Additionally, you should incorporate body awareness into your meditation routine, if you have one, making it a point to try to feel each and every part of your body. One of the biggest benefits of building body awareness is that it improves your balance, especially for seniors, says Pilates instructor Rebekah Rothstein.

Step 3: Focus on strengthening your core

According to WebMD, Pilates experts liken the body to a tree — suggesting that the body has a core, much like a tree has a trunk. If you want to maximize your Pilates workout, work on your core. Your arms and legs will get a great, toning workout, too.

Step 4: Protect your bones

Pilates instructor Rebekah Rotstein says that people with osteoporosis and bone weakness should not perform certain Pilates exercises. Make sure you consult a doctor before beginning a Pilates workout if you have any kind of health condition.

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