6 Pilates Benefits: What Pilates Does to Your Body?

what does pilates do

Pilates was introduced in the 1920s by Joseph Pilates in the US. It is still very popular in the Western world and is often considered a “celebrity workout“. What are the main benefits of Pilates that make it so admired and expensive type of workout? In this article, we will answer those questions by showing you 6 Pilates benefits in detail. So, let’s take a deep dive into what Pilates does to your body.

What Does Pilates Do For Your Body: 6 Key Benefits

1. Tones Abs and Improves Core Strength

Pilates workout activates muscles in your back, abdomen, and pelvic floor. These are the muscles that support your whole body. Practicing Pilates strengthens your core muscles and improves your endurance. Pilates exercises involve slow and controlled stretching movements. The strengthening of the core muscles helps you gain flexibility and flat abs in the long run. As you know that Pilates (especially most of the mat Pilates) is a low-impact workout, it will not exhaust you but make you feel energized.

A research study on Pilates concluded the following.

An eight-week pilates training program has been found to have beneficial effect on static balance, flexibility, abdominal muscle endurance, abdominal and lumbar muscle activity.

– Journal of sports medicine and physical fitness
Pilates strengthens core muscles, pilates benefit core. benefits of pilates
An image from Nuvovivo.com showing which muscles are benefited from practicing Pilates workout.

2. Relieves Certain Types of Pains

Regular Pilates practice helps relieve body aches, especially pain in the neck, shoulders, and back. If your back pain is caused by poor posture, Pilates fixes your posture, which results in reducing back pain. By focusing on your pelvic floor and abdominal muscles and strengthening your weak core muscles, Pilates can help relieve lower back pain. Certain types of Pilates, like clinical Pilates, are carefully designed and customized by physiotherapists for patients who are dealing with chronic back pain.

In 2017, Lady Gaga shared that she’s practicing Pilates to deal with her chronic pain disorder fibromyalgia. fibromyalgia is a syndrome that causes extreme tiredness, aches, and pain all over the body, insomnia, and memory problems. Although Pilates doesn’t cure fibromyalgia, it helps your body to manage the symptoms and reduce the pain.

Benefits of pilates. An image showing Lady Gaga doing reformer Pilates to deal with Fibromyalgia pain.
An image showing Lady Gaga doing reformer Pilates to deal with Fibromyalgia pain.

3. Improves Mental Health

Pilates is all about concentration. It will push you to gain awareness of your body movements and focus on your body and breathing, thereby creating a mind and body relationship. When you practice each and every Pilates exercise with full attention, it helps you calm down.

The best thing Pilates does to your body is to help you relax, elevate your mood and bid adieu to stress. Original Pilates helps you loosen tight muscles and get rid of the stress hormones built up in your muscles that ultimately make you feel less stressed and more energized.

A body free from nervous tension and fatigue is the ideal shelter provided by nature for housing a well-balanced mind, fully capable of successfully meeting all the complex problems of modern living.
~Joseph Pilates

4. Corrects Posture

Slouching at your desk or chair could result in poor posture. If people have been asking you to sit up straight and not slouch, you need to understand that it is time to correct your posture. Such poor posture could be the reason for your constant headache, and neck and back pain. When you practice Pilates, you will see an improvement in your posture and you will be able to stand tall. This form of exercise will strengthen your imbalanced and underdeveloped muscles and help get rid of poor posture.

5. Assists With Weight Loss

Pilates benefits the body in several ways and shedding some weight is one of the most popular Pilates benefits. Pilates tones muscles and helps you look thin. A 50-minute basic mat Pilates session burns around 175 calories and an advanced level session burns around 254 calories. In the same way, a 60-minute basic reformer Pilates session can burn around 250 calories and an advanced reformer Pilates can burn up to 450 calories in one hour. Some specialized Pilates like Winsor Pilates target your belly area and improve metabolism, resulting in weight loss.

6. Beneficial During and After Pregnancy

If you’re wondering whether Pilates helps you during pregnancy, the answer is yes. Pilates is beneficial to pregnant women as well as to those who have recently given birth. This exercise form strengthens pelvic muscles and helps with pelvic alignment. It helps pregnant women maintain their fitness and prepares their bodies for childbirth by strengthening their core and pelvic floor. After giving birth, this form of exercise will help them recover. Each stage of pregnancy needs a customized Pilates workout, so make sure you get an instructor who has specialized in prenatal and postnatal Pilates training.

pregnant woman doing pilates reformer roll-up Cadillac exercise with a personal trainer.

Final Thoughts on What Does Pilates to Your Body

If you have not incorporated Pilates into your daily workout regimen, it is high time you consider adding it to your routine to reap its benefits. However, we would like to end this article with a word of caution. If you have a medical condition, we recommend consulting with your doctor before you start off with a new exercise program. Likewise, you need to gradually progress with Pilates if you have never exercised before or you had been exercising in the past but stopped your workout routine for a long time in between.


Medha Mehta

Medha Mehta

Medha is a Sr. content marketing manager at Yottled. She is passionate about writing, SEO, and digital marketing. She's a tech and cybersecurity enthusiast.

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