Will Pilates Help Me Lose Weight?
New clients have often asked me, “Can Pilates help me with weight loss?”. The answer is yes and no. Let me explain.
What Pilates Is
Pilates is a full body workout that focuses on the strength and flexibility of your spine as the foundational concept. As such, there is a great emphasis on strengthening the entire structure of core muscles in your body. (To learn more about your core, click here.) Pilates also works on alignment, posture, balance, and coordination.
While working on these concepts and developing the musculature needed to accomplish these tasks efficiently and well, our bodies begin transforming. We hold ourselves differently in space. We move with more ease and grace. We stand taller and broader. As these change start to take root in our bodies, others will often observe that we “look different”, or they may say “It looks like you’ve slimmed down!”. If regular exercise has not been a part of your schedule in the past, beginning a movement practice can certainly support you with weight loss if this is one of your goals. And if you already were practicing other forms of exercise, Pilates will gradually introduce changes into your body that will make you look and feel taller.
How A Regular Pilates Practice Can Support Weight Loss
If your goal is to lose weight, Pilates can support you in ways that may seem quite unexpected. For example, as we focus on connecting with our breath and sharpening our ability to concentrate, we learn to slow down and perceive what is happening in our bodies. When those principles are applied to the dinner table, you will notice yourself feeling more capable of slowing down and reflecting consciously on the choices you are making in terms of your nutrition. The same benefits also help us manage our anxiety and stress better which means that we can better regulate the amount of stress hormones being released into our bloodstream at any given time which have been found to be connected to weight gain issues in many cases. A consistent Pilates practice will also help you tone areas of your body that you perhaps want to address.
What Pilates Is Not
Pilates is not designed to be a weight loss program. As we have seen, a regular and consistent Pilates practice can certainly support us with weight loss goals, but weight loss is in and of itself a complex subject matter with many varying perspectives. There is no one solution to weight loss. If that is your specific goal, in addition to a regular and consistent Pilates practice, we also recommend seeking the guidance of a certified nutritionist who can support you.
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