Principle 1: Breath
Breath is literally how we live and exist. But do you live and exist to your fullest? The breath is so powerful. It is a direct pathway to our para-sympathetic nervous system, the system that can bring us calm when we need it. I don’t know about you, but calming down is a great skill to have when you have kids, a job, a husband/wife, a house, family, pets, and a million other things to juggle.
Couple a calmed nervous system with a boost of endorphins that you get from moving your body in Pilates, and hello happiness. That’s why Pilates is addictive: it makes you happy from the inside out. It keeps you calm and sane–on and off the reformer. Breathing also heals, by sending oxygenated blood all throughout your body. When you heal and calm your body in Pilates, you take that healing and calm out into the world, and it's powerful.
Principle 2: Centering
In Pilates, your Center is also referred to as your Powerhouse. Your Powerhouse is all the muscles from your ribs to your hips in the front, in the back and around the sides. These are the girdle of muscles that we want to strengthen to help stabilize your spine and pelvis. And, we let’s not forget about the booty muscles- they are part of the Powerhouse too!
In Pilates, the premise is working from the center first. It’s the place from where we draw our strength and stability. There is SO much focus on this because we always want our movements to be initiated with a strong Powerhouse. This is powerful because in the chaos of life, it’s Centering that we need. We want to think and behave and live from our core values- our Center- a grounded place where we are more self aware, kinder, less triggered and more positive. Pilates makes us aware of this place of strength in a physical way, but the ripple effect makes us aware of it in our lives.
Principle 3: Control
Did you know that before Pilates was called Pilates, it was called Contrology? It’s wasn’t until Joseph Pilates died in the 1960’s that his method was named after him. We’ve all been there: as we get older, if you live a sedentary life and overall make poor health choices, your body starts to be in control of you. Whether that be with illnesses, ailments, or injuries, these things start to dictate your life and the choices you make. You start to participate less in life, less in the activities you once enjoyed, because of the illness/pain/ailment.
Pilates puts you back in control of your body. It’s “stretch and strength with control”, and the control part is important because it’s the part that uses your mind. When you can exercise control over your mind, you can execute exact movement in your body. And it’s that exact movement that will increase mobility, break bad habits, and fix poor alignment. All of this means you’ll be able to participate in your own life more.
I love Pilates- what it does for my body, my mind, and my life. Come join me for a session, and you’ll reap the benefits too.