Sixty-four days into my 100-Day Pilates Challenge and excitement continues. After completing my daily Pilates workout, my body feels amazing. Any tightness or soreness I had has disappeared. I feel energized, even on days when I wake completely exhausted! I am confident I will continue Pilates on a daily basis beyond this personal challenge. The benefits will continue for years to come.
Regular exercise is one of the greatest ways to maintain a healthy body at any age. However, as we age, our bodies become less flexible and weaker. Balance and coordination also decrease, along with stamina and endurance. During these later years, exercise is vital to staying healthy and feeling young. However, some exercises can be inappropriate for the older population, when the risk of injury increases.
Pilates is especially beneficial for senior adults. Imagine a form of exercise that can erase years off your body! Pilates is low-impact and gentle on the joints. It is a progressive form of exercise, with emphasis on proper postural alignment. The exercises focus on quality of movement, not quantity (i.e., number of repetitions). With private instruction, routines are performed at one’s individual pace. Stability and control of the core are the premise, which help improve overall movement, balance, and posture. Flexibility and stamina return. Bone density is maintained and can actually improve.
A Pilates reformer session can be modified to accommodate the abilities of a client at any age. The use of springs allows for gentle resistance and assistance during the exercises. Although the core is the primary focus of all Pilates exercises, one will work the entire body during a session. Gentle stretching is also incorporated into the routines, for well-rounded fitness with each session. The results are seen within weeks.
Concentration is one of the Pilates principles. There is a strong mind-body connection emphasized in Pilates. This teaches one to be conscious of posture and movement. It enables proper movement patterns, which decreases aches and pains associated with improper motion. The mind is challenged as great concentration is required with each execution. This keeps you sharp and helps you stay young!
I have clients in their 70s and 80s. Sometimes, I forget they are older. Pilates has enabled them to become so limber and strong. In a short time, once-modified exercises are replaced with more advanced options as the overall body improves. Talk with me to discover how Pilates can help you—at any stage of life.
Check out F&W News (www.fitnessandwellnessnews.com) on June 1 for “Booming Baby Boomers, Part 1”. Learn the latest health trends for boomers and how they’re working out. One 60+ member shares how Aquatic Pilates is launching her into the next phase of life. Be inspired and reap the rewards.
Join me next week on www.fitnessandwellnessnews.com as I’ll discuss Pilates for dancers.