Pilates + Strength Training

August 5, 2022

Pilates + Strength Training

Oftentimes Pilates is associated with building leaner, more toned muscles. But, did you know that Pilates can be used to support a variety of goals, including lifting heavy weights and strength training? We talked with one of our Pilates trainers, Ernesto Palma, about how he uses Pilates to support his strength training routine, and why you should, too!

Pilates Improves Your Core Strength

“Everything about Pilates is core-related,” said Ernesto. A strong core is extremely important when lifting heavy. When you’re focused on so many other things, having your core automatically go into that “engaged” mode helps prevent injury and common complaints like back pain.

Many injuries that often occur while lifting, including lower back pain, can be avoided by engaging your core when lifting heavy. Pilates encourages strengthening of the core muscles, which allows you to keep those muscles properly engaged during a workout.

In addition to setting you up for a more effective workout, building a stronger core through Pilates movements will give you more stability while strength training. “Pilates makes lifting weights and generally just going to the gym so much easier.”

Pilates Creates Body Awareness

As you start to incorporate Pilates into your fitness practice, you’ll notice a few changes in the way you move and carry yourself outside of class. “Pilates makes you more aware of everything you do in your life,” said Ernesto. When you have better body awareness, you may be able to sense stress or tension in your body in time to correct a position or posture to avoid pain or injury.

Another benefit of having better body awareness? Better posture and balance! After a few Pilates sessions, you’ll notice your body will more naturally want to stand tall, and you'll have more of an awareness of your center of gravity - leading to less trips and falls, and less injuries during a workout!

Pilates Improves Flexibility + Mobility

The combination of strength and stretching exercises in Pilates will help to increase flexibility and mobility of your joints. “Having good flexibility is one of the most important things you need to get stronger,” said Ernesto. When you have better flexibility and mobility in your joints, you’re allowing your body to hit that full potential for a deeper squat or deadlift.

Getting Started with Pilates

If you’re brand new to Pilates and looking to start incorporating it into your fitness routine, Ernesto recommends starting either with a Pilates Mat class or Pilates: Beginner Program to get an introduction to reformer Pilates.

Working with a trainer is another great way to get started. No matter how you decide to start, Ernesto recommends working one-on-one with a trainer at some point during your Pilates journey. “Take at least one session with a trainer to make sure you understand the foundations,” said Ernesto. If you still have your complimentary training session on your account, a Pilates session would be an excellent way to use that! Click below to get started with personal training (simply mention that you’re interested in Pilates when filling out the form) or browse our Pilates class schedule!

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