Fridays at 9amand ** Tuesdays at 8pm***
Use same listing for both days
Mat Pilates is a strengthening and lengthening form of exercise that focuses on your core (trunk) muscles while also training your arms and legs. Mat Pilates is based on the original exercises Joseph Pilates developed to strengthen his own body as a very young man and then began teaching others. The Mat work came before any of the Pilates Apparatus (equipment) he developed. Mat Pilates can be modified for any age, body or fitness level. It is even possible to practice the modifications of the Mat work in a chair.
The Benefits of Mat Pilates
Pilates is a mind, body, and spirit practice with benefits that include improved posture, better coordination and balance, increased lung capacity, improved concentration and focus, increased body awareness, stress management, and injury prevention. Mat work is a great choice for everyone from begginers to advanced students because the exercises not only can build in difficulty, but every exercise can be modified to decrease or increase the level of challenge. Practicing Mat Pilates helps build a strong, balanced body and increases flexibility. As you progress in your practice you will notice improvements in breathing, focus, stress management, and body awareness. Mat Pilates is perfect for beginners because you only need your own body, a mat, and some floor space to start.
Some advice for beginners
Pilates is not like quite anything you’ve ever done before in the best ways possible.
Take your time and don’t assume you are going to use the same muscles you’ve used in every other form of exercise you’ve ever done.
Remember that you are working to stabilize one portion of your body while moving another.
If your work feels like all leg work, make the work smaller and focus on your breath and your abdominal engagement.
Don’t forget to breathe!
Cues like “sink your belly button to your spine” can be confusing.
This doesn’t mean suck in your stomach, press your lower back to the floor, or hold your breath.
It is the feeling of allowing your ribs to relax toward your hips while your belly button is pulled toward your spine on an exhale to engage your abdominal muscles.
You will feel a pulling up of your pelvic floor (lower abdominals – think below the hips) muscles even though your pelvis won’t move or tip. Pilates will not be easy right away.
Allow yourself to enjoy the process of learning about your body and moving in a new way. Have fun with it!
Pilates is called a practice for a reason – it requires focus and dedication.
How often should you exercise on the Mat?
Aim for at least two Pilates sessions per week to start. If you can make it three all the better. And you may find yourself loving it and feeling so great after doing the Mat work that you want to hop on the mat every morning or each night for 15 or 20 minutes.
Let your body and your responsibilities and how Pilates makes you feel dictate your frequency as you progress.