What should I wear and I do need to bring anything to class?
As you can see from the picture below you should wear something comfortable so that you can move around, breathe comfortably and not get too hot. It also helps me to check your body's alignment so that you are doing the exercises safely and effectively
Please bring plenty of water and have a drink before the class starts. You do get quite warm during Pilates classes and dehydration and lead to cramp and dizziness.
If you have a mat then bring it along to class , apart from that I provide all of the Pilates equipment you should need to do the exercises.
I have a back problem/injury can I still do Pilates?
Pilates is very safe and provided your Health Care Provider has given you the go-ahead to come to Pilates classes then you will be okay. I always suggest two or three one-to-one sessions in my Studio before you come to regular classes so that you can learn the basic Pilates exercises, how they feel and to do them safely and correctly. Even if you have done Pilates before it is always useful to have a private session to jog the body's memory!
When someone has back problems or any sort of injury I always warn them to make sure that their Power House (core) is engaged when they begin the exercise and stop immediately if they feel uncomfortable. I suggest very easy, simple versions of the Pilates exercises and only attempt exercises they feel comfortable doing.
Can Pilates help me lose weight?
Pilates is not cardiovascular at the beginner/intermediate level because you are still learning how to do the exercises correctly but combined with a healthy diet and other cardiovascular exercises Pilates can work wonders. Pilates gives you a toned physique and great posture.
How many times per week should I do Pilates?
Pilates is designed to be done every day but not everyone has the time, motivation or money. In the beginning once a week is enough to learn the basics, build strength and balance. Then you are ready to go intermediate and will want to do classes twice a week - Pilates gets very addictive once the results are being felt and seen in the body.
Do I have to be flexible to do Pilates?
No, not at all. Most people who start doing Pilates come to classes to regain their flexibility, build strength, improve posture or want help with an injury. If you can get up and down off the floor then you can do Pilates!
Why is neutral spine so important when doing Pilates?
The human body is a wonder of engineering, particularly the spine with it's 'S' shape it is perfectly constructed to support the body and allow it to move in many directions.
Pilates was originally designed to be done on a Reformer (a long bed with pulleys and springs) and the back, in part, was supported. It was still very important to maintain the arch of the back - the Lordotic Curve - to mimic the 'S' shape of the spine.
Pilates exercises are now done on a mat on the floor and the head, shoulders, back and hips are more pressed into the floor and the natural 'S' shape is compressed.
Beginners when doing Pilates tend to either arch their back too much when first doing Pilates or compress their chest and hips and this puts pressure on the spine. This is where neutral spine is important as it maintains the correct curves of the back whilst doing the exercises. In order to do this the Powerhouse or core muscles of the stomach have to be switched on at all times.
How do I know if an Instructor is qualified?
Unfortunately, the industry is not regulated but all Instructors train for 18 months, take exams and are assessed competent by being awarded Level 3 Mat Pilates Instruction. All Instructors have to be insured.
What are the benefits of Pilates?
Where shall I start?
Improved lung capacity because breathing in Pilates means breathing laterally so that the lungs are at full expansion.
Improved use of central powerhouse (core muscles) that build inner strength and creates a beautiful flat stomach.
Improved balance and posture.
Easier to do the everyday things that we like do.
I hope you found these answers useful!