Pilates Helps You Connect With Your Center

 

Pilates teaches you how to connect to your center which is a crucial skill in weightlifting. What so many people don’t realize is that weightlifting, strength and power moves should always be initiated from a strong center connection before moving any extremities. The entire Pilates repertoire is built around helping you to connect to your center, or what Joseph Pilates famously called, “The Powerhouse”. This is not just your abs. Your center includes all the muscles in the trunk of your body, both front and back, as well as your hip muscles, and inner thighs. It is a complex but powerful network of muscles that will help you weight lift stronger and safer.

 

Pilates Helps You Find Your Arm-to-Back Connection

 

I can’t begin to say the amount of times my strength coaches have cued me to “pack my lats” before initiating an upper body focused movement or a body weight movement. The first time I heard that cue, I knew exactly what it meant and what I needed to do thanks to my years of Pilates training and practice. Pilates helps you figure out how your arms connect to your back, or more precisely your shoulder girdle. This means that when you go to move your arms, you are not relying just on your arm muscles or your shoulders. Pilates will help you understand how you to move from your strong back muscles. This will again help you to get stronger over all as well as protect your shoulders and neck from unnecessary strain and injury.

 

Pilates Strengthens Your Connection To Your Feet

 

Pilates pays a lot of attention to your feet and ankles. With exercises such as Footwork on the Reformer, your feet get stronger, more grounded, and more flexible. When you feel more rooted through your feet, you will move with more ease, and significantly improve your sense of balance. Grounding into the feet is such a valuable concept in strength training. So many times having the awareness and connection into my feet has given me a sense of a solid basis from where to push and move.

 

An Awesome Reciprocal Relationship

 

Ever since I started strength training I have been fascinated by the relationship I see between what I practice in Pilates with what I am learning with my coaches. My Pilates training helps me prepare my body successfully for strength training and weight lifting and my strength training in turn helps me progress in a lot of Pilates exercises that require more strength. If you love strength training and weight lifting, I strongly recommend adding a consistent Pilates practice to your cross training program. You won’t regret it!

 

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