The Anatomy of Pilates, As Explained By An Expert Trainer

(Source: Erika Bloom)We all love Pilates and based on how we feel afterwards, and the tangible physical results, we all know that it works. But how? To discover the basic biometrics behind this super popular method, as well as hot new Pilates trends, we chatted with trainer Erika Bloom.

Can you explain some of the basic anatomy and biometrics concepts that make the workout so efficient?

"Pilates exercises are designed to work the entire body in coordination, which efficiently tones you from head to toe, but also improves bio-mechanical relationships in the body, thereby teaching you to move better both in and out of a Pilates session. Additionally, Pilates is unique in that it truly addresses the intrinsic musculature and not just the larger muscle groups. This improves joint support and function, which prevents injuries and improves universal strength. Lastly, Pilates exercises focus on range of motion, eccentric engagements of the muscles, and lengthening of the fascial web. This leads to a lean, lengthened, graceful body."

Are there any new Pilates trends that really take these anatomical principles to the next level?
"At Erika Bloom we have deepened our understanding of the bodies' fascial web, and how by addressing it in our sessions we can more effectively correct postural imbalances. Correcting posture reduces pain, improves strength and mobility, and makes everyone look leaner and more beautiful! Looking at the body not as individual muscles and bones, but as a connected whole, has been essential in achieving this new level of work."

What are some new Pilates trends for spring and summer?
"Many of our clients are over the six-pack look, so we've created a series of exercises that make a narrow waist and a flat tummy but without that over muscled look."

Can Pilates be done solo at home? Or is a studio better? Why?
"Doing Pilates at home is great for people who can't get into a studio, but studio private sessions on the apparatus are the most effective. A lot of what makes Pilates work is the detail of the alignment, the breathing, and the personal cueing and corrections. You can't get this at home."

For those unfamiliar with Pilates, how is it different from and similar to yoga?
"Both Pilates and yoga are mind-body methods so they both offer the results of a calm, focused mind and bring you in tune with yourself and your body. Pilates and yoga also both improve flexibility and strength. Pilates is unique to yoga in that it has a huge library of exercises for each specific muscle and each functional movement so it can be perfectly customized to each person to transform the way they move, look, and feel."

What does wellness mean to you?
"Wellness is being connected to yourself so that you can listen to the ebb and flow of your individual needs. This is how to achieve balance and health and happiness. For me, Pilates is a huge piece to finding that connection and staying in tune."

(Source: Erika Bloom Pilates)
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