Blog by Susan
People often have the misconception that Pilates is just for women. But tell that to our male clients at Lotus Mind & Body, as well as the thousands of men in the military, including the very macho Navy SEALs, who use its core strengthening exercises as part of their daily conditioning regimes. Not to mention the many pro athletes like Tiger Woods and the NY Giants who've adopted Pilates for core fitness training and stretching.
Need more "hard core" facts?
FACT: The originator of the method, Joseph H. Pilates, was in fact, a man. Moreover, he was a whisky-drinking, cigar-smoking guy's guy. A boxer and gymnast, he trained hard and took pride in the fact that he was asked to model for anatomy charts as a young adult.
FACT: The Pilates method is a "functional exercise" form that focuses on how the body moves as a "whole," not just on the major muscle groups that are so often over-used in sports or over-developed in typical gym exercises. And they're often the very muscles that are tight and stressed from long commutes and sitting at a desk or computer. Men can benefit tremendously from the "re-balancing" effects of Pilates and tend to see marked improvements in strength, flexibility and overall wellbeing very quickly.
FACT: Pilates is often prescribed by doctors and physical therapists for both male and female paitents with lower back pain because it strengthens the deep stabilizing muscles of the torso, helping to take stress off the delicate and often over-worked lumbar spine. It also increases range of motion and flexibility of the overall spine, making it a golfer's best tool (next to his 60 degree wedge, of course).
FACT: Because Pilates equipment is spring-loaded, each person experiences a unique amount of resistance based upon the force he or she exerts, so it's equally effective for people of all ages and fitness levels. Pilates will challenge both the muscle-bound, weight-lifting gym rat, as well as my 76-year-old mother (yes, she does Pilates twice a week!). And just when you master a specific spring setting, this unique equipment will provide even more of a challenge by using a lighter spring load. A "less is more" kind of twist!
The next time you hear someone say Pilates is not for men, give them the facts. Or better yet, invite them to one of our Pilates classes. But only if you think they're man enough to keep up!