3 Pilates Myths

Pilates will lead to weight loss

A myth and not a myth. Working hard at Pilates several times a week will help with weight loss and will help keep you strong, toned and lean. However most people will only do 1 class a week.

Pilates will burn calories, but not as many as other forms of exercise. Like all forms of exercise you get out what put in. A pilates class can be hard work, leaving you with an elevated heart rate and a warm glow. Or you can do a class that is more for relaxation and gentler core work. Both will provide benefits, the former will lead to greater calorie burning.

Doing Pilates once a week will not lead to weight loss on it’s own. However as part of a co-ordinated approach, with a healthy eating plan and other exercise it will definitely help. It acts as the foundation for other exercises and gives you that core strengthen and abdominal definition.

Use Your Core

I also remember working with one overweight lady who proudly told me how her husband had commented that he could now see her abdominals. What had happened? She hadn’t dramatically lost weight but her core was stronger and that line of definition was her obliques.


Pilates is only for girls

Ummmm No. Pilates was designed by a man and used initially mainly for men. Joseph Pilates used his new exercises to help soldiers rehabilitate after war injuries. Later on Pilates was embraced by the dancing world and became seen as more of a female exercise programme. It was hijacked by the women. A smart move by them but the men are missing out!

Pilates with Priya: Joseph Pilates Rollover

Plenty of male athletes use Pilates as part of their training. In fact it is now being used by football clubs and rugby teams in their warms ups and strengthening routines. If you need core strength, flexibility and function, you need Pilates.

Our mat classes incorporate whole body exercises such as The Press Up and  Leg Pull Back. These go down well with our male clients, but I also find they love to stretch and really need to do so. I’ve worked with manual labourers, businessmen and sports players. We are so fortunate that we now get a range of men into our classes and it adds a really nice vibe.

After years of me teaching Pilates my husband has recently taken the plunge and is now taking classes, no not taught by his wife 😉 He is hooked and never misses his weekly class.


Pilates is just for the abdominals

Pilates is definitely for the abdominals, but that is not all it does. Since jumping into running a studio and teaching pretty much daily I have noticed a huge difference in my body. Yes, I have abdominals with nice definition (when I’m not pregnant!), but my whole physique is leaner, more toned and I am stronger. Which for me is so much needed when I’m lifting children and running a busy business. My aches and pains are kept under control as I know how to fix myself, I know which muscles need a stretch, which need a strengthen and what I need to correct in my posture.

You may get abs of steel from Pilates, but you will get so so much more than that. When a client can suddenly touch their toes or do an exercise they couldn’t do for the first time, it is exciting, suddenly they see a change in their body.

Muscles of the Trunk

Pilates will help you do your everyday life better and stronger.

The story of a man taking up Pilates

We have run our home business for over 5 years now, and for several years, I have been badgered to take up Pilates regularly. This has come from both Priya and some of our lovely class members…I have always found reasons and excuses not to regularly take up a class.

But to be completely honest, I have needed it for years.
Before, I used to work, in a semi-active job and was on my feet regularly, and walking around campus.
Since 2010 I have predominantly been working from home, and helping bring up my two amazing children.
Lots of sitting, crawling, playing on the floor (and that’s just the children…)

About 3 months ago, I decided to stop procrastinating…

It’s tough. There you go. I admitted it…
I have chosen a class with Jo on a Wednesday evening.
I know where my core is, and in the past it has been in tip top shape, but over the years, I have become lazy, and taken short-cuts which has had negative effects on posture, core, and muscles.
I have found out (though I was not surprised) that I have tight hamstring muscles. Embarrassingly tight. My straight leg, is more 125 degrees than 180 degrees…

Though on the bright side of life, my best exercise (as quoted by Jo) is the Mermaid (or a theme of it)…
Yes, I said it, I am good at being a MERMAID!!!

My favourite exercise is…. I have not idea… I just do as I am told!


Pilates with Priya: James does Pilates
On a serious note, I love it. After a busy few days, I love my Wednesday evenings…
Time to wind down, chill out, and improve my Core…
If I could, I’d probably try to do it 2-3 times a week.
This has been on my doorstep for over 5 years, and I had previously only attended 3 classes. Ever.Why didn’t I start earlier….!?

Why Men need Pilates.

Pilates was developed by a man, for men. Joseph Pilates, a beer drinking,cigar smoking boxing man, devised it and used it to help soldiers rehabilitate after injuries. He even turned hospital beds into Pilates aids. Now all these years later somehow Pilates has fallen out of favour with men.

We have a steadily growing group of men coming to our classes and I can definitely say that those who commit to it really see the benefits. A few of the ladies who come are gradually persuading their husbands to come along for a trial class and it’s always great to show them that it’s not all about leotards, ballet moves and breathing.

Slowly Pilates is having a come-back with men, the All-Blacks, several football teams and tennis players like Andy Murray have been shown doing Pilates exercises. Personally I think it’s essential.

Pilates with Priya: Joseph Pilates Rollover

Why Do Men Need Pilates?

Pilates is great at strengthening muscles that you wouldn’t otherwise work on. There are big muscles that we use in day to day life that can take  become overly strong and tight leaving other muscles weak and lengthened. For example you may have tight hamstrings (back of the thigh) but weak gluts (in the bum). Balancing out these muscles will lead to less aches, pains and a better functioning body.

Improving flexibility may not be the top of most men’s list but if you are more flexible then you will move better and be less prone to pulling muscles and injuries.

Everyone needs core strength. It’s not all about amazing abdominals and a six-pack, although you can definitely get those from Pilates. Think more about how a stronger core leads to less back pain, more strength and movement in your limbs. It can also lead to you lifting heavier weights and help prevent injuries.

When done properly Pilates is flipping hard work! I’ve worked with a few men who have almost been in tears during a workout. It can really push you to your limits but also relax you too.

If you haven’t tried it, you really need to.

I’d love your feedback if you are man who does Pilates – how do you find it?