What Are Pilates And How Do They Build Muscle?


If you're always in the gym, constantly hitting the weights, you've probably noticed some changing trends over the year. Maybe you've seen someone doing Pilates and scoffed, "What are Pilates even?" Don't be so quick to judge. Sure, there have been some ridiculous fads in the gym, but there are others that have stuck around because they actually work. Hit the mat and try saying "Hello to Pilates."

What Are Pilates?

It's a simple question with a simple answer. Developed by German-born Joseph Pilates, this method of training has been dubbed "Contrology" since it revolves around conditioning your body. Putting emphasis on aligning the body, working on your breathing and developing core strength, Pilates routines can truly help you take charge of your system.

How Does Pilates Build Muscle?

Unlike working out on the weight machine, Pilates routines usually focus on bettering the whole body and not just one muscle. In addition, Pilates helps to build different kinds of muscles than lifting weights, as it can develop and hone long, lean muscles that will help create a stronger inner and outer frame. If you're looking to work on your abdominal and back, Pilates can push your body to another level. Unlike yoga poses that don't involve any movement, the body is continuously pushed throughout most routines. The moves are more akin to sit-ups and push-ups, as opposed to a position where you lie dormant.


Can Pilates Help Bodybuilders?

Yes. You may be super swoll already, but that doesn't mean you can't improve your body even more. By creating a well-developed core, you'll provide yourself with a better base for doing lifting exercises that help you create bigger muscles. In addition, Pilates can also help you with injury prevention. Most Pilates exercises focus on building up the deepest layer of muscle, which will help in the healing process that occurs after every workout.

Forming A Pilates Routine

Nab a Pilates mat so you have a comfortable place to work and then try tackling something simple to start with. Here are a few basic Pilates moves that you can try out at home: Chest Lift: Sitting in sit-up position, put your hands on your head, take a breath and lift up without bringing your shoulders with you. Then exhale, pull your belly button in towards your back, allowing your spine to strengthen and then lower yourself back to the mat. Open Leg Balance: Sitting back on the top of your butt, bring your feet towards your head and grab your ankles to balance. Focus on pulling your lower abs in and extend one leg out at a time for a matter of a few seconds. Repeat on both legs a couple of times for maximum effort. One Leg Circle: Lie flat on your back with arms at your sides and then pull your abs in while bring one leg up straight up. Hover your leg over the opposite side of your body, create a small circle in the air, lower the leg and do another circle. Answering the question, "What are Pilates?" can really have a major impact on your body and workout. By creating a stronger core, helping your body rejuvenate and acting as a small warm up for a heavier workout, Pilates can have a great impact on the your system.  

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