Pilates and a Balanced Body for an Older Generation
In our last blog entry, we went over some common myths about using Pilates to get fit and achieve a balanced body, but there was one more that we left out. This is another pervasive, unfortunately misunderstanding about what Pilates can offer – that Pilates is only for the younger among us.
Thanks to its focus on core strength and, sometimes, intensity, some people believe that Pilates is less suited to those of more advanced years. Like most other myths, this one isn’t true either. Pilates can help you achieve a balanced body, improve your flexibility and give you an energy boost, no matter what age you are! After all, age is just a number. Sheppard Method Pilates can explain how it can help you.
Low Impact Exercise
Everyone should exercise – young or old – and there are endless fitness options out there. Unfortunately, if you’re older, you’re more susceptible to joint and muscle problems, or even more severe annoyances like brittle bones.
Because of issues like this, a lot of common exercises such as jogging, however light, aren’t advisable. Even young, regular runners have to go to great lengths to protect their joints, so someone of advancing years is increasing their risk with more high-impact exercises.
Although it’s thought of by some to be a more “intense” form of yoga, Pilates is a wonderful option for those who are older and may have more fragile joints because of how low impact it is. Despite the reputation, the right Pilates instructor, like those at Sheppard Method Pilates, will tailor your Pilates program to make sure you’re not pushing yourself too hard.
Your Pilates Instructor is There to Listen
On your way to a balanced body, you’ll be spending a lot of time with your instructor – and they’re there to listen. A good Pilates studio will have instructors who are not only well-versed in the details of Pilates and its benefits, but also in the ways in which can be adapted for everyone. If you do have any chronic joint or muscle problems – for example, osteoporosis or stenosis – then let them know the details.
Discuss whether Pilates is right for you with your doctor, and then talk it through with your instructor. The right program, with the right balance of work and gentle exercise, can help your mood and your mind, without putting undue strain on your body.
Better Overall Balance
One of the biggest benefits of Pilates for anyone, no matter their age, is the way it can improve your overall sense of balance. Young or old, plenty of us have found times when we feel off kilter, or even clumsy.
The deliberate and focused movements in Pilates, and the concentration that’s required to get it right, carries over from your classes into your day-to-day life. If you’ve found yourself struggling with balance, or focus and concentration, as you’ve gotten older, Pilates could be the activity that helps you realign and find your center. This is what we mean when we talked about a balanced body and a balanced mind.
A Balanced Body, Whatever Your Age
If you are an older reader, hopefully we’ve managed to convince you that getting a balanced body and mind, and improving your overall fitness with Sheppard Method Pilates isn’t just for the younger generation.
If you want to improve your strength, endurance, flexibility and overall health, private Pilates classes, or classes with others, is a great option. Take a look at the different classes we offer at our Pilates studio, and contact Sheppard Method Pilates to get started on your balanced body today.