Pilates: What’s in it for the guys?

2013Mar18_Pilates_AYou’ve seen the girls going to their classes with personal pilates mats slung over their shoulders, decked out like a fluorescent rainbow of lycra and smelling of shampoo and determination. Whatever Pilates might be, it doesn’t seem to be something for men does it? After all, when people like Arnie hit the gym, it was for iron-pumping not Pilates.

The truth is that Pilates is not just for women. In fact, it wasn’t even created with women in mind. Back in the early 20th Century, Joseph Pilates devised the program for soldiers returning from the battlefield. The series of exercises was designed to help men rehabilitate and build up strength. It  was certainly was not regarded as a trendy exercise for ‘ladies who lunch’. Pilates offers a strenuous workout and is a great way to build a balanced, masculine physique by targeting little-used muscle groups.  Among the many butch benefits are:

  • It tones your abs! The holy grail of exercise for many men is the six-pack. A near mythical reward for months of work that you can wear as a badge of honor and show off on the beach.  Pilates emphasises your core muscles and uses slow controlled movements that you have to hold for a length of time. This means you are using your abdominals in an intense new way; your six pack is in the post.
  • It makes you flexible – A flexible muscle is a strong muscle and the flexibility that comes from repeated Pilates exercises helps you to excel in other sports and activities. It improves your stamina and ensures you are less prone to injury so that you can really shine in all you do.
  • It helps you to heal – If you are passionate about other forms of exercise, such as football or hockey, the gung-ho style of play can often leave you open to injuries, from bruises to breaks. Pilates was designed for people rehabilitating from injury and the controlled movements help prevent further damage while improving future performance.
  • An activity you can do between sports – You can’t run 15 miles a day without impacting your knees or bench-press 300 pounds week in and week out, without needing to take quality time to rest. Many male-oriented sports create a lot of wear and tear on the body. With Pilates however, you can practice on a daily basis and increase your strength and flexibility, with no downtime between sessions to recover.
  • Beat the bedroom blues – Because of its emphasis on core muscles and the pelvic floor, men who practice Pilates tend to have better control and stamina which of course can help when it comes to activities of a more amorous nature. Your new weight loss and straighter, leaner posture will also mean that you not only look better but exude self-confidence which always makes you attractive to other people, whatever your age.
  • Joseph Pilates was a macho man himself! – Google his picture. Even in his 80s Joseph Pilates was a mountain of a man and looked as if he could wrestle a bear before breakfast. But he wasn’t some gym addict who spent his whole day in the gym. He was also a boxer, a diver, a skier, a beer and cigar lover and, so they say, a massive hit with the ladies. All of a sudden, it seems that Pilates isn’t might just be a macho sport after all!

Want to bring a little variety to your workouts? Why not get in touch and find out about our classes.

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