The lead up to Halloween and Christmas is undoubtedly a very stressful time. One minute you’re making a spider costume for your kid’s Halloween party and the next you’re finding an old tea towel to use as a shepherd’s headdress for the school nativity – for the next three months, everything goes into fast forward as you bombard your way to Christmas Day. This means that now, more than ever, you should be setting aside some time for that little bit of #SelfCare and that doesn’t just mean reaching for a large G&T. Here at TBM HQ, we have been known on occasion to delve into the world of exercise! So I met with Claire, a trained APPI Pilates Instructor and qualified Physiotherapist who practises in Malpas, to discuss the benefits of Pilates and learn how it can help you to relax, destress and breathe at this hectic time!
As a newbie to Pilates, there was a lot I had to learn from Claire. She explained that APPI Pilates is a physio modified form which makes it more accessible for beginners (so no excuses not to start on that front!) APPI allows the instructor to modify the movements so that they suit the ability of the person, meaning each movement is a more individual and prescribed exercise from the Physiotherapist in charge. Hence this form of Pilates is also great for people who need rehabilitation from an injury, or even for women postnatally. But this isn’t the only benefit!
Claire also described how Pilates can be beneficial in terms of relaxation: “for that hour you are switched off, you are concentrating on your breathing… so you can’t be thinking about the shopping or who is picking the kids up!” Having this downtime each week gives you the chance to catch up with yourself and switch off from your daily stresses, whatever they may be. What’s more, at the same time you can improve your core strength and your flexibility, which is bound to have a positive effect on your daily life; for example, a mother who is often picking up and carrying young children is likely to suffer tensions and strains in their backs and shoulders – Pilates can help reduce this by improving their flexibility and strength.
So, I asked Claire: what exactly are the top 5 benefits of Pilates? She listed them to be: