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The benefits of core strength from Pilates

Sep 11, 2012, 8:54 a.m.
Benefits from Pilates include relief from joint and back pain, improved mobility and muscle balance.

Pilates is an exercise routine that is gaining popularity, especially among older adults, because it creates many physical benefits due to its focus upon developing core strength. Benefits from Pilates include relief from joint and back pain, improved mobility and muscle balance. With a strong core, the body has less likelihood of becoming injured.

Although similar, there is a difference between yoga and Pilates goals and methodologies. Core strengthening is the intention for those who practice Pilates. The goal here is to have a strong center of internal muscles supporting the spine and trunk of the body. Abdomen and back muscles are developed in balanced routines that also help develop graceful movement and stability. This helps relieve pressure upon the back and reduces back pain.

The appeal of Pilates to older adults is found in its simplicity. No special equipment is needed and movements are slow and gentle enough to be done by almost anyone. It is a focused discipline that works to develop control and precision in movements. Concentration is a must and attention is paid to breathing. The exercises are done on a mat or on the floor. If equipment is used, the participant's weight provides the resistance against pulleys and springs.

The goal of Pilates is to improve breathing, alignment of the spine and pelvic regions and to concentrate on proper movement. Control of the body is an essential goal and as a result, you learn to move efficiently and in a smooth manner. Low impact Pilates is also used in physical therapy and rehabilitation routines.

Pilates is an exercise routine that can be modified as your skills increase. Start with the easy beginning plan and move forward to advanced Pilates when you and your body are ready to step up to a more intense workout. Benefits at every level include faster recovery from injuries, improved performance in sports and better posture because of your new core strength. All of this, of course, can help you maintain optimal health at any age.

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