The time has come to get re-engaged in life, find your new ‘normal’ and start focusing on what your body needs to keep it fit and strong. Not just so that you can carry on doing the things you need, want and love to do, but also so that you will be able to bounce back should you be unfortunate enough to catch coronavirus.
Lockdown went on for much longer than we imagined and If you haven’t managed to stay fit and healthy by going online with your exercise programme then it’s time to decide whether to return to face-to-face classes or brave the virtual world.
Isn’t Walking Enough?
You need to do regular cardio sessions like fitness walking, swimming or cycling to keep your heart and lungs strong (especially important with the threat of coronavirus around); but also strength training to maintain strong muscles which keeps your bones strong and prevents the onset of Osteoporosis and flexibility exercises to keep your joints mobile and to avoid musculoskeletal injuries.
So where does Pilates fit in?
It is recommended that we all do some form of Pilates Our relatively sedentary lifestyle creates stiffness in the spine and weakness in the core. Both of these can lead to back pain and more severe back disorders. Daily life also creates imbalances in the body and Pilates helps to correct these imbalances which would eventually lead to pain, injury or disability.
Which Pilates Should You Choose?
There are many different types of Pilates classes:
Mat classes where the floor is used for support, for feedback from a fixed surface and to enable you to work against gravity to challenge and strengthen your muscles;
Studio equipment classes which add greater assistance or resistance to Pilates exercises, there are seated and supported classes for people who are unable to or find it difficult to get down and up from the floor
Anchor Point Pilates™ (APP) which is my brand new programme. It is a fusion of Pilates, Strength Training and Functional Exercise. It will keep your muscles stronger than with regular Pilates classes and is friendly on the joints which is of particular importance as we age.
All the different types of Pilates are adaptable to all levels and it’s important to choose a class appropriate for your level – and ideally which is not bigger than six people per class whether face-to-face or online.
How Many Times a Week?
One Pilates class will make a difference, but two or three sessions a week will give you even greater benefit and more quickly.
During lockdown, whilst I’ve been streaming my classes online, I’ve tended to do more of the exercises myself than when I teach face-to-face and I’ve really noticed the difference. Everything I do in my everyday life feels like I’m doing it better and I’m feeling amazing because of it.
This is not just the matwork which has enhanced my performance but also Anchor Point Pilates™. With the latter, I’m able to keep my muscles stronger, which not only guards against osteoporosis. Strength training increases metabolism which prevents weight gain and also and enables me to be more active without getting injured.
If I didn’t strength train, I wouldn’t be able to ride my 200kg motorbike, hike up mountains or open water swim in a wet suit as much as I like to.
If you’d like to learn more about any of my Pilates programmes do email me to email@example.com or for more information on my new programme Anchor Point Pilates™, I’ll be running a free pop-up Facebook group later this month which will go into greater detail about using resistance bands, door anchors and strength training in general.
Meanwhile stay safe, fit and healthy, coronavirus is still out there.