Pilates exercises target the entire body to increase muscle strength and flexibility, while also improving posture and alignment. This workout can be done on the floor on a mat or with equipment at a gym or studio, in class with a trainer or by yourself at home (if you have access to the equipment).
The controlled, mindful breathing of pilates helps calm the nervous system, reduce anxiety and promote sleep.
The slow, controlled movements of pilates strengthen muscle groups without adding bulk. This makes it ideal for people who have injuries or musculoskeletal problems, those with low fitness levels, pregnant women and seniors. Pilates also improves balance and body awareness through the use of breathing and mindful movement that increases proprioception.
The deep breathing practiced in Pilates decreases disordered production of harmful hormones, promoting a healthy state of mind and well-being. The technique helps to calm the nervous system and alleviate long-term stress symptoms such as anxiety, depression and sleep problems.
Pilates trains and strengthens the muscles that support your posture. As a result, you can stand and sit taller with better balance and stability, reducing the risk of back pain and allowing your joints to move freely and efficiently (1).
Unlike other types of exercise that may cause stress, Pilates reduces the production of harmful hormones and increases the release of neurotransmitters, such as endorphins, which promote feelings of well-being (2). In addition, the conscious and controlled breathing practiced in Pilates helps you tame your stress and anxiety.