Pilates Partners: Duet Sessions
Many Pilates studios offer "duet" sessions in addition to private and group instruction. Duet sessions involve two people and one instructor. The benefit of signing up for duet sessions is that you save money, but still get individual attention, unlike in many group classes. Often private Pilates instruction is very expensive, so you might not be able to offered more than one session per week. However, if you found a Pilates partner, you could cut your cost and get into the studio more often.
When looking for a Pilates partner, be sure the individual you choose has the same level of Pilates experience at you. Most studios will recommend that both students take several private lessons as a individualized introduction to the equipment and exercises. This will also help the instructor to know what you privately need to work on. It is helpful if you and your Pilates partner have similar goals in mind. If you are both cyclists, you may want to work on strengthing your core to prevent break pain. Maybe you and your Pilates partner are both pregnant and want to stay tone while your pregnant and after the baby is born. As in any relationship, it is important that you and your Pilates partner are compatible. Your partner should be supportive, enthusiastic and dependable. Taking duet sessions with a partner is a good way to stay motivated and positive. You and your Pilates partner can spur each other on. A partner is also a built in task master. They will help to ensure you are going to your sessions regularly. Remember: you can't have a good Pilates partner unless you are a good partner.
Find a pal today! You can also start by looking for a Pilates Studio near you and then asking if they know of anyone wanting to share duet sessions.
Pilates For Weight Loss
There is still research being done into how effective Pilates is for weight loss. The general consensus is that Pilates is not the best way to burn calories. However, calorie consumption, a person's weight, and muscle structure can all effect the process of weight loss. Pilates' main benefits include improved posture, increased flexibility, longer muscles, and increased joint mobility. These benefits can help an individual sculpt their body in a way that is more lasting than just mere weight loss. Pilates is a constructive form of exercise that has long term results beyond a fad weight loss plan.
If you would like to lose more weight by practicing Pilates, first be sure you have all the fundamentals down pat. Learn the basics of breath and flow, good alignment and inner strength, then when you and your Pilates instructor agree you are ready, step the training up a notch. You can increase calorie burn in a harder Pilates mat class or you can add more difficult equipment to your training sessions. As in any weight loss program, what is important is that you not only track and stay committed to a workout program, but that you also set in a place a healthy diet that contains the right amount of calories. Talk with your Pilates instructor about setting weight loss goals and see what s/he offers in terms of a structured Pilates program.
Pilates For Expectant Moms
Pilates is a great and safe way for women to stay in shape during their pregnancy and an even better way to get back in shape after giving birth. Pilates builds core strength which strengthens deep and superficial muscles that assist in balancing, aligning and supporting the body. Regular Pilates practice will help you build stronger abdominal, back and pelvic muscles; all of which will be utilized during pregnancy. Having a supportive and active set of core muscles will aid in combating any discomforting that comes while in labor.
As with any exercise, before you start practicing Pilates while pregnant, consult your doctor. It is best to find a Pilates instructor who is certified in pre-natal Pilates. There are also pre-natal Pilates mat classes you can attend. If you have never taken Pilates before, you should let the instructor know, so that they can modify the poses and exercises to suit your skill level and pregnancy term.
Pilates and Back Health
Maybe you have chronic back pain from sitting at a desk all day for work. Maybe you injured your back while moving a heavy object. Maybe you just have improper alignment and therefore constant back pain. Whatever your back affliction, Pilates may be able to offer you a remedy. Pilates focuses on strengthening the trunk muscles or core area of the body (the abs, pelvis and back) and can help alleviate back pain by giving you new ways to move. Often times we get injured because we are not properly using our bodies. In a Pilates session, you learn how to properly stand, how to breath and how to engage muscles in a way that is not damaging.
If you are having back pain, consult with your doctor about taking a Pilates class or private session. If your doctor is okay with your exercise course, find a Pilates instructor who is certified. You should share your medical information with your Pilates instructor so that they can effectively put together a Pilates workout that will heal your body while strengthening it's ability to stay healthy. Be sure to always let your Pilates instructor know if an exercise or pose is hurting you. Unlike other exercise forms, Pilates is not so much concerned with immediate results as it is with long term health and fitness goals that are easy to maintain and will help you live longer without pain.