“Concentrate on the correct movement each time you exercise, lest you do them improperly and thus lose all vital benefits." – Joseph Pilates
When you’ve been doing Pilates for a long time, it’s easy to get caught up in rushing the exercises and just "going through the motions." We often call this “muscling it,” as opposed to moving with control and precision.
In Pilates, we play with tempo to increase aerobic capacity and develop endurance, and as a challenge to see if we can maintain posture, stability and alignment. It’s part of advancing your Pilates practice.
That said, it’s important to slow things down every once in a while—and get back to the basics—to ensure proper and efficient movement, and to remember our foundation.
The Importance Of A Strong Foundation In Pilates
Like in any pure art form, a solid foundation is of utmost importance to the Pilates practice. If there are any holes or gaps of strength, connection or understanding in one's body, the preceding exercises will be ineffective and counterproductive.
It takes using and controlling one's entire body—we call this full-body integration—to properly perform the exercises in the Pilates method.
Three reasons why a strong foundation is so crucial:
Getting “Back To The Basics” (As A Seasoned Veteran)
Like I mentioned above, once you have a strong Pilates foundation, you never forget it, like riding a bike. But that doesn’t mean we don’t get lazy every now and again as we speed things up and start performing more powerful movements.
This is why I encourage you to slow down and remember your foundation. Rather, let your body remember your foundation.
One can continue to practice the foundation and basic level of Pilates without getting bored or being too redundant. Pilates has so many valuable principles that allow us to shift our focus on precision, imagination, concentration, breath, intuition, fluidity, centering, control, integration.
Be "OK" with doing repetitive footwork, hundreds and other exercises that strengthen your foundation.
Be "OK" with slowing things down occasionally and bringing it back to the basics.
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About The Author
Fitness has always been a guiding force for Kathy Lopez, owner of Studio Be. Her inherent drive for health has naturally translated into helping others achieve strength, balance and wellness. Kathy has been voted Ventura's best Pilates instructor nine years in a row. Learn more...