January is often a time of renewed energy and resolutions. Pilates might be something you have been advised to try or you have been meaning to for a while. The questions I am asked the most is how many times a week do I need to do Pilates to feel the benefits?
Any time you move your body you are providing yourself with many physical and mental benefits (mood boosting, confidence building, better mobility, feeling stronger) but the answer to how much isn’t always clear cut. The first question I ask to assess the answer in more depth is what are you hoping to get from Pilates; is it complimentary to other things you are doing, are you returning to exercise or have you recently had a pregnancy, an illness or injury and is your focus mobility, strength, control or a mixture of these?
The World Health Organisation, NHS and Government all outline that adults (anyone over 18) should be undertaking 150 minutes of moderate cardiovascular activity (activity that still allows you to talk) or 75 mins of vigorous cardiovascular activity (activity from which you are out of breath) as well as 2 x strength/resistance training a week alongside 2 x balance/mobility sessions for anyone over 65 (though this is beneficial to us all)! This might come as quite a surprise to most people as this is quite a challenging target to hit when working in a sedentary job with other commitments. With this in mind this blog is not written to make anyone feel guilty about what they are not doing but to empower you to know what you might need to be doing to meet your health and fitness goals
It is completely up to an individual how they choose to portion this activity out, what cardio you want to do be it running, netball, a aerobics session etc, the most important thing is to do what you want! There is definitely no one size fits all, what you are doing should be what you enjoy as it is very unlikely you are going to stick with something if you don’t find the ‘flow’ (the perfect point of challenge and success which creates what is known as a flow state) and therefore you are unlikely to feel the benefits that you are hoping to gain. It is also important to recognise when you are better at exercising (for me it’s about 9am!) and scheduling it into your days in advance, as it is more likely you will stick to the schedule and make time for it. (Habit building relies on us succeeding in order for it to be a positive experience and thus make us want to do more!)
So how does Pilates fit into this? The idea has always been that Pilates is a whole body movement practice that with regular commitment you become more controlled and skilled at doing. Depending on the class or style can change what you get from a class but for the most part Pilates is a resistance/strength based activity that also can develop mobility and control (co-ordination and balance!) therefore if Pilates is your exercise of choice for a strength based workout you need this 2/3 times a week to feel the benefit or see significant progress. Then it is a case of keeping the intensity, frequency, load or repetitions increasing to see a continued improvement!
Join 5 steps to truly achieving your fitness goals to see how I can help you get there! Starting 3rd January there are 5 X 30 minute online sessions (available for 48 hours as recording)
Habit building and goal setting what do you want to get and how are you going to get it.
Myth busting outdated beliefs and misconceptions about fitness
Strength vs cardio vs mobility the debate what do you need and how much?
The importance of accountability and community
How to make it count, train smarter not harder!
Book in now and get your January off to a flying start! https://www.moveswithemma.com/booking-calendar/5-steps-to-achieving-your-fitness-goals?referral=serv