The first time you take a new fitness class can be intimidating! Especially if you’ve seen Instagram videos of famous people doing crazy-looking things on the Pilates equipment. If you’ve wanted to try it but are intimidated by all these videos, then now is a good time to start. Pilates offers numerous benefits to any type of body, regardless of your fitness background. Pilates is a movement program developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 1900’s. He called it “Contrology”, but after his death in 1967, it was practiced worldwide and known as “The Pilates Method” or Pilates. It improves your posture, strengthens your core, focuses on body alignment and in general helps you move better through life. Here are some tips on where to start:
1. Make a call to a Pilates studio that’s close to your house (it should be convenient or chances are you won’t continue). Speak to the front desk and get information on free trials or beginner classes - most studios will offer at least one trial class.
2. Try and start with a few Mat classes. As exciting as it is to want to jump on to a reformer, your patience will pay off. Get comfortable with Pilates terminology on the Mat before you hear it on a machine you’ve never used before. You’ll be hearing lines like, “curl your pelvis”, “keep your scapula down”, “legs at table top”. Studios like The Pad in Dubai actually have a ‘Pilates Fundamentals’ class to help you understand these basics of Pilates before you start a normal class.
3. Take a friend along! Every new thing is less intimidating (and more fun) with a partner.
4. If you have any kind of injury or pain, ensure you speak to the instructor in advance, they may recommend you start with a few private classes based on the severity of your injury.
5. Have fun! Pilates is the best gift you can give to your body, so jump in and enjoy it.
Inputs from Shaazia Qureishi - Co-founder of Yasmin Karachiwala's The Pad - Pilates And Dance