With a growing number of individuals from all walks of life looking to achieve a slim and fit body, it should come as no surprise that the sheer variety of fitness routines seems to be growing on a yearly basis. However, there are certain workouts which rise head and shoulders above the rest. One perfect example can be seen in the practice of Pilates. In order to appreciate the benefits that this system has to offer, it is first necessary to examine what effects it has upon the body and how it differs from other options.

All About the Core

Pilates is primarily intended to strengthen the core muscle groups of the body through the use of controlled exercises and movements. This is an ideal option for those who do not wish to build any bulk but instead, who desire a lean physique with a greater range of motion. Another interesting benefit is that unlike many rigorous workout routines, Pilates generally uses natural body mechanics to provide strength. This is in direct contrast to requiring heavy weights and other types of equipment. The user will only need a mat to feel the effects of such a system.

The Physical Benefits

Pilates is popular due to the fact that it provides strength as well as cardiovascular advantages. This is not very common, as other routines focus on either one or the other. Pilates can therefore be thought of as a “one-size-fits-all” alternative to more gruelling and even boring routines.

Anyone who is pressed for time will be pleased to learn that results can be obtained much quicker and one-hour Pilates classes can provide the body-shaping benefits that are desired. This is a direct result of the cardio-strength combination mentioned above. Of course, there are different levels of intensity and classes will be based around the goals of the practitioner as well as his or her current levels of fitness. As one’s experience and endurance increase, the exercises will become more challenging.

Finally, we should also point out that Pilates can be performed by nearly anyone and no prior experience is required. This is particularly beneficial for those who are elderly or recovering from an injury. The low-impact nature of many movements are perfect to gradually increase core strength over time.

The Mental Edge

It is just as critical to realise that Pilates exercises produce many of the same “feel-good” hormones that are often associated with other activities such as running or lifting weights. So, one’s moods and overall outlook will improve. The same positive effects can be seen in terms of lung capacity, emotional health and the reduction of stress over time.

These are some of the main reasons why a growing number of individuals are incorporating Pilates into their daily lives. Thanks to its ability to target the core muscle groups while minimising the chances of an injury, this unique exercise system will produce very real results within a relatively short period of time.