Who says you need a full range of daily exercise and religiously go to the gym to become physically active? Exercises come in many forms, including the low-impact mind-body exercise known as Pilates.
Now more than ever, Singaporeans need to pay attention to their lifestyle and exercise. A 2021 National Population Health Survey showed that more people from Singapore experience flailing health. The sedentary lifestyle mainly caused the problem that many residents had to adopt during the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic.
If you are part of the data, it’s high time to break free and aim to become healthier and live longer. This is where a Pilates class can help.
Is Pilates good? Yes, no doubt.
This article will guide you through the types of Pilates and how you can develop a workout routine based on your fitness goals.
Let’s explore the types of Pilates that can aid in losing weight, improve postural alignment, manage chronic pain, alleviate symptoms of a specific injury, and more.
We will talk about the types of Pilates you can do in Pilates studios or the comfort of your own home by yourself or with the help of Pilates instructors.
It’s time to begin your wellness and fitness journey. Read on.
The 7 Types of Pilates Methods
The different types of Pilates, whether traditional Pilates, classical Pilates exercises, or other forms, promote core strength. Pilates is considered a full body exercise and offers different health benefits.
You can choose among the different types of Pilates, but the method you follow can vary from time to time. Pilates is categorized into types that differ depending on your goal and the specific body parts you want to focus on.
For example, you have to work with Pilates teachers who specialize in a workout that burns calories if your goal is to experience weight loss and develop lean muscles. In this case, many Pilates instructors recommend Stott Pilates or reformer Pilates.
On the other hand, if you want a private session that can aid in relieving stress, you can look for certified instructors offering semi-private classical Pilates sessions. These classes allow you to spend less time on apparatus work and more time focusing on mindfulness.
Here are the seven types of this exercise to help you decide which of the different types of Pilates best suits you.
1. Classical Pilates by Joseph Pilates
Classical Pilates or Contrology incorporates mat and apparatus work. This traditional Pilates follows the method developed by Pilates founder Joseph Pilates at the beginning of the 20th century. This type of Pilates is taught following a traditional order.
This makes classical Pilates suited for people who prefer routine, particular order, and structure in their workouts. When doing the exercise, expect to perform transitions in between.
Classical Pilates focuses on improving alignment on the shoulders, neck, head, and hips tilt to your back or posterior pelvic tilt.
This Pilates workout is performed in reformer sessions or done on the mat. Classical Pilates movements usually begin with easy movements and gradually shift to more complicated exercises.
2. Clinical Pilates
Clinical Pilates is performed by a qualified physiotherapist. Clinical Pilates is a therapeutic workout and fitness training done along with treatments for specific health problems or injuries.
Unlike classical Pilates exercises, the movements in clinical Pilates vary depending on what the instructor has designed for the patient.
Your physical therapist will customize your clinical Pilates workout depending on your health concerns, weight, and location of the injury.
Clinical Pilates has been proven effective in helping patients reduce chronic pain, recover faster after surgery, and stabilize neck and back muscles.
3. Contemporary Pilates
Contemporary Pilates is similar to hybrid Pilates. It incorporates classical Pilates workouts with different types of routines. These exercises may include aerials, aerobics, physiotherapy, yoga, and more.
Although the practice is based on classical Pilates, each contemporary Pilates class differs depending on the styles and the core principles the instructors want to focus on. Many Pilates instructors use the movements in contemporary Pilates for re-education.
They become handy for a physical therapist and other specialties in the medical profession. They include contemporary Pilates in aiding their clients with movements and rehab.
Contemporary Pilates adds recent findings to improve the work of Joseph Pilates. It is shaped by the ideas gathered from current research, communication skills, motor learning, and biomechanics.
The exercises in contemporary Pilates vary depending on your instructor. Some use props, including a classic reformer, resistance bands, foam rollers, a yoga mat, gym balls, and more.
You will also find some teachers who combine contemporary Pilates with dance. Many advanced students who enjoy the constant movement in each session of contemporary Pilates prefer this one exercise.
4. Mat Pilates
Mat Pilates is performed without any Pilates equipment but a mat. In mat classes, you will use a Pilates mat that provides more cushion and is slightly bigger than a yoga mat.
Mat Pilates reached a different level of popularity during the Covid-19 pandemic. Since the exercises can be done at home, many people have adopted a system wherein they can perform mat Pilates at home.
This is the main advantage of mat Pilates. You don’t have to go to Pilates studios to get it done.
During the recent pandemic, many instructors launched virtual platforms wherein people can attend mat classes in the comfort of their homes. You can also sign up for 1:1 coaching to make it easier to follow the mat Pilates movements.
Mat Pilates focuses on exercises that help strengthen the lower back, leg muscles, shoulders, pelvic floor, and hips. Mat exercises can also aid in improving your balance and pain tolerance.
5. Reformer Pilates
Reformer Pilates has many similarities with mat Pilates, but it uses a machine with springs, a platform, and a bed like frame. This is called a reformer machine that gives more resistance as you perform the reformer exercises.
Reformer classes are more intense than mat exercises. Due to the nature of movements in reformer Pilates, the classes must only be done under the supervision of a licensed instructor.
Reformer Pilates also tends to be expensive, but it is effective in developing muscles and alleviating pain in the shoulders, legs, and spine. Once you become good at reformer Pilates, you can buy a Pilates reformer for home use.
You can choose among the many types of reformers intended for reformer Pilates. They include the Ladder Barrel, Cadillac, and Classic Reformer.
You will also need other accessories, such as a Vinyasa Triangle, Jumpboard, rotational Diskboard, and a reformer box.
6. Stott Pilates
Stott Pilates was created by Moira Merrithew, a ballerina whose neck injury led her to study Pilates. When doing Stott Pilates, you keep off your lower spine on the floor.
Through continued practice of Stott Pilates, your balance will improve, restoring your spine’s natural curve. Stott Pilates also improves the muscles surrounding the joints as the exercises realign and protect them.
7. Winsor Pilates
Winsor Pilates is named after its founder, an acclaimed Pilates instructor, Mari Winsor. The exercises in Winsor Pilates focus on the band of energy found at the center of your body with the goal of weight loss.
Most of the Winsor Pilates exercises emphasize breathing coordination. Mari Winsor capitalized on infomercials and training videos to tell more people about Winsor Pilates.
And her marketing strategies worked. Winsor Pilates is now among the widely practiced Pilates worldwide.
Why Should Pilates be Integrated into Your Workout Routine?
Pilates hones your mindfulness. It helps you become more aware of your surroundings, especially when danger is present. It teaches you to control your breathing as you develop core strength and gain many health benefits.
Where to Do Pilates Class in Singapore?
You will get a good list of Pilates classes and where to go when you search for Pilates Singapore. You can go to studios and enroll in a Pilates class. You can also do this virtually and perform Pilates at home.
Which Pilates Method is the Best for You?
The different types of Pilates listed above have varying goals. They also differ in how the exercises can help you, depending on what you want to improve.
You need to set a fitness goal first to make it easier to choose which among the different types of Pilates is best suited for you.
Extra: Hybrid Pilates – Combination of Pilates with Other Exercises
Hybrid Pilates combines basic Pilates movements with other kinds of workouts.
For example, you can work on breathing by doing yoga with Windsor Pilates. Or you can use a Pilates reformer machine when doing yoga poses.
You can try combining Pilates with other exercises you’re comfortable with. To make it easier to adapt Pilates to your fitness routine, you can experiment with doing different studio Pilates until you find what’s best for you.
Pilates is a good form of training that helps you lose weight, improves your mental health, and provides different health benefits. If you are still searching for a studio to practice Pilates, you can try one of the best boutique yoga studios in Singapore, Sweatbox.
You can practice Pilates no matter your age. But the sooner you do it, the faster you will achieve your fitness goals.