If you're looking to build up your core strength and not wanting to do the tried and true methods of sit-ups, crunches, and knee raises, Pilates could be a great option for you. You may ask: what is Pilates and how do people benefit? Being able to work on a stable or unstable platform, builds and condition your core muscles and gives you that streamlined, toned look. The game is evolving as new equipment starts to replace the very basic mats.
This article will give you better knowledge and more insight on Pilates in general, while introducing you to some of the innovative equipment on the market today. There are multiple products which can get the job done, but it's your choice which product best fits you.
The Pilates Reformer
The Pilates Reformer is one of the most versatile systems on the market and uses springs, pulleys, and straps for stretching and flexing. The platform has a gliding movement on which the person may sit, stand, kneel, or lie down on. Using either your arms or legs for a pushing motion off of the structured foot-bar. The controlled movement with the help of springs, gives the muscles a gentle workout. The Reformer is nearly unlimited and gives you up to 100 exercises. The progressive resistance doesn't make you bulky, rather strengthens and lengthens the body. If you want a stronger core and better posture without damaging your joints, the Reformer is your best option.
If you're thinking about getting a PR, you get almost unlimited exercises with just one piece of equipment. Here are some characteristics of the system:
- Elastic Ropes
- Aluminum, Steel, or Composite Frame
- Soft Rollers
- Foot Bar
- Elastic Cords
The Pilates CadillacOften known as the Rack, this piece of equipment is very versatile and one of the most effective products ever made. The raised table top is horizontal and surrounded by four posts/frames. There are a number of straps, springs, and bars for gripping built into the unit. The Cadillac has many adjustable parts and functions which makes it a bit tricky to use. Having an instructor or guide to help you with proper usage and safety. Some of it's features include:
- Fuzzy Hanging Loops
- Ankle and Thigh Cuffs
- Cross Bar
- Roll Down Bar
With up to 80 exercises available here, the Cadillac develops spinal flexibility, challenges and tones the core abdominal muscles, strengthens the back, works the deltoids, and challenges the entire body as a whole. Look here for more info and pictures: Pilates to Flex Me
The Pilates Stability Chair
The Stability Chair (SC) is very small, but is very effective for it's size. This product is a great addition to your training and gives you at least 75 different exercises. Adjustable Spring Resistance is the key method which makes the chair a specialized instrument for rehabilitation. Re-Balancing muscles and extra stretching is great for injuries such as strains. Users tend to get heightened neuromuscular coordination and the device works the buttocks, back, and pelvic region.
Regular Pilates have their place but the Pilates Reformer takes the gains to another level. The exercises rejuvenates you by correcting muscular and skeletal imbalances. Other benefits include:
- Increased Flexibility
- Mind/Body Coordination
- Better Breathing
- Corrected Posture
- And A Leaner Physique