18 Jun 5 reasons why men should try pilates
As part of Men’s Health Week this week, 15 – 21 June 2020, we are raising awareness of the importance of exercise for the physical and mental well-being of all men.
It’s a common misconception that Pilates is only for women. Pilates is great for everyone, including men. Pilates is often prescribed for reducing back pain and healing from injuries. The added core strength and overall muscle balance can help you feel better and reduce nagging pain that hinders your day to day activities.
5 reasons why men should try pilates:
- Flexibility: Men by nature are not the most flexible from the waist down. They tend to struggle with tight hamstrings, hip flexors, and abductors. This can come from having weak glutes. By loosening and strengthening these areas, you can perform other activities to the best of your ability without fear of injury. Tight muscles = more prone to injury.
- Muscle-building: Pilates forces you slow down during movements, which in turn puts more demand on your muscles. “Slow and steady wins the Pilates race,” because if you’re speeding through the movement, you are more likely to do it incorrectly. Pilates also focuses on building intrinsic muscles, which are muscles that don’t typically get a lot of attention. By working these smaller muscles you are preventing injury and improving your fitness.
- Pain relief & balance: Balance comes from your feet and core. If your core is not strong and your body lacks flexibility, then you can throw balance out the window too. We tend to favour one side of the body naturally. It could be by simply crossing your legs and leaning on one hip, or your posture. Pilates elongates & strengthens muscle from head to toe, making your muscles balanced from one side of the body to the other. This improved balance throughout the body improves your movements, and most importantly, can reduce pain.
- Posture: Pilates gets you to think about your posture not only inside the studio, but also outside. Increased awareness of your posture will help your flexibility while maintaining a healthy, younger spine. “A man is as young as his spinal column. If your spine is stiff at 30, you are old. If it is flexible at 60, you are young.” Joseph Pilates (founder of Pilates Method).
- Abs: Last but not least, sporting teams are turning to Pilates because of its core and abdominal benefits. Every movement should derive from your core, whether you’re lifting heavy boxes, reaching for a glass on the top shelf, or throwing a ball. A strong core can help propel any movement better without strain on the body.
At Brighton Spine & Sports Clinic we offer Pilates as part of exercise therapy within our purpose built Pilates studio, above our rehab gym in Brighton. We practice mindful movement for beginners and for those more advanced. All sessions are run by experienced physiotherapists and osteopaths to specifically target your areas of weakness, instability or inflexibility. To book an initial Pilates assessment, please phone our reception team on 9596 7211.
This blog is an edited version of an article by Ashlee Carignan, Pilates instructor at PWA in Los Angeles.