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Pilates is a contemporary physical fitness system developed by Joseph Pilates in Germany. This is one of the most popular fitness workouts today, practiced all over the world, with more than 11 million followers and 14.000 instructors, only in the United States. This system was first developed as a discipline that strengthens the mind and the body. Today, most people practice simplified version of original teaching that focuses strictly on physical exercise. Some of the most favorite celebrities are practicing pilates on a regular basis, including Madonna, Jennifer Aniston, Cindy Crawford, Uma Therman, Charlize Theron, and charming Sarah Jessica Parker.

Method of pilates

Pilates involves sequences of mat exercises that strengthen the core and train the body. Sometimes, the training includes the use of other workout equipment such as pilates balls, small weighted balls, foam rollers, rotating disks and resistance bands. The goal of the practice is to focus on the movement and become more aware of the body. Pilates method controls the muscles while lifting the body against the gravity and the resistance of equipment. The movement is flowing through the appropriate transitions, which makes it possible to build strength and stamina at the same time. In pilates, it is not important what one does, but how he or she does the movement. The movement should always be correctly performed since the more strength builds up from a few energetic, concentrated efforts than from a thousand listless ones.

Benefits of pilates

Pilates is a great way to increase an overall level of fitness while improving the flexibility, range of motion, blood circulation, posture, and abdominal strength. People practicing pilates will notice they are getting more aware of their body, which is very much important to prevent daily injuries. Most of the back injuries, except of those in car accidents, result from a simple forward bend. When someone practice pilates, the body will gradually learn (for example) to pull the stomach in before bending forward and to stretch and reach with the spine before making a bent.

Pilates is also a great way to strengthen the core muscles and flatten the stomach. Pilates training provides an effective solution for losing excessive weight and building up a nice and lean body. Moreover, pilates trains the body as an integrated whole. Concentration and focus on the body movements are proven to provide relief from the degenerative symptoms of Parkinson's disease, while deep oxygen rich respiration invigorates the body and makes a person feel more calm and relaxed.

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