Consider this, Pilates was invented by a man, for men!
The surge in popularity of Pilates through recent years has been mainly female dominant for many reasons not least the emphasis on the core and pelvic floor, something which many women strongly associate with. So why should men do Pilates..?
The weightlifting phenomenon
I love lifting heavy weights from time to time and I am in no way belittling the benefits of this type of training. However, the nature of weightlifting is that it is very much practiced “part by part” with people concentrating on specific large muscle groups during their workouts. Pilates focuses on the whole body and creates balance so that the smaller stabilising muscles aren’t left out, this avoids the overuse of the dominant areas and ultimate tightening and strain.
Pilates works to increase strength, balance and flexibility. It creates length within the muscles to allow the person full range of movement. Again this avoids the overuse of certain dominant muscles ensuring functional and efficient movement
Men tend to come from the “no pain no gain” school of thought. Don’t get me wrong, Pilates can hurt, the difference is that this isn’t the goal. In Pilates sometimes it’s the small movements that are the hardest – for example I am yet to meet a man who enjoys “Clams” (side lying, legs bent, open and close of top knee), and hamstring stretches in my class leave most men sweating and swearing! Men will find the classes tricky but not in a way they are perhaps used to.
Desk culture = lower back pain
This one is definitely not specific to men but often something I see. Spending 8+ hours a day at a desk or commuting in a car creates a massive tightening in the hamstrings and a huge reduction in spinal/core strength . 90% of my clients have come to me for back pain and Pilates has some amazing “quick-win” exercises that can immediately relieve the discomfort. Hand in hand with finding relief we would also work to build up the core strength so that your seated position has some more support releasing the pressure on the back.
So come on boys, take steps now to avoid future injury or rehab an existing one with Studio Scoop.