Do you know what Pilates is? Is it the same as yoga? Do you have to have a super strong core to do it? Let’s dispel a few myths and take a look at some drawbacks of Pilates.
Pilates – What is it?
Pilates is different to yoga. For a newbie it seems like they are the same but slightly different, so if you are looking for a yoga class do not attend a Pilates class. You will have a completely different experience than you intended.
Pilates is a form of exercise that is low impact. It focuses on strengthening the core muscles, flexibility and posture. While the biggest emphasis is on the core muscles, other muscles will be targeted too.
Disadvantages of Pilates
1. Is is Not Yoga – If That’s What You’re Looking For
During my years in the fitness industry I have seen many attending Pilates in hope of something similar to yoga but with a twist. It is not yoga. It is Pilates. It seems an obvious statement but something that gets easily mixed up in the world of exercise. Pilates is more of a workout whereas yoga focuses on a holistic approach to movement.
2. Don’t Expect High Energy
Pilates focuses on core strengthening exercises, it does not focus on getting your heart rate up. If you want cardio exercises then choose another form of movement to give you a high impact energising class.
3. Not Always the Answer to Rehab
It is often stated that Pilates is the answer to rehabilitation for the body. This is due to the history of Pilates and how it was used by the bedridden during World War I. However, Pilates is not always the answer to all injuries. Sometimes the core exercises can be too intense on the particular area of the body that is injured and the body needs another form of rehabilitation exercise to heal.
4. It is Not a Class to Switch Off and Relax
If you are looking for a class that you don’t have to think, then Pilates is not the best option. Pilates requires focus with a high level of concentration as you work your body through different movements to strengthen the core.
5. It Can Hurt
If the body has injuries, the muscles are weak, or you are a complete novice to Pilates, then practice can result in aches and pains. It is important to schedule in rest and recovery days around Pilates classes to avoid hurting your body as it recovers from the strengthening exercises.
6. Extra Cost
Pilates classes can be expensive compared to other well known fitness classes. If a Pilates class is at a gym or fitness studio, they are usually an extra cost to the membership. This can make Pilates an exclusive form of exercise which makes it less accessible for some people.
7. Not a Stress Reliever
As stated with the misconception that it is similar to yoga, people may believe it is great for frustration relief. Yes, it can release stress if you have a relaxed mindset going into the class, but if you are choosing Pilates purely as a form of relaxation and stress relief then it might be best to choose a different type of class to relax the mind
8. Not a Substitute for Strength Training
Yes, Pilates does focus on strengthening the core muscles, but it does not build muscle mass like traditional strength training does.
9. Not Always Authentic
There are instructors who make use of Pilates exercises that Joseph Pilates did not invent. This has decreased the authenticity of the exercise regime. The term Pilates continues to be used for marketing purposes.
Pilates is proven to be an excellent form of exercise for the body. However, it is very important to know what you want from a fitness class and understand what your goals are so that you get exactly what you want for your health and fitness results. Some people are Pilates fanatics and love the benefits it provides for the body, others do not get the benefits they expected – often due to thinking it will be like yoga or have a cardio element.