“…the attainment and maintenance of a uniformly developed body with a sound mind”.
Joseph H. Pilates (1881-1967)
WHAT IS BODY CONTROL PILATES (BCP)?
BCP is based very closely on the Pilates technique developed by the late Joseph Pilates. It is an excellent non-aerobic form of body conditioning and training that anyone can do regardless of age or ability. It targets the deep postural muscles working from the inside out. In today’s society with all its labour saving devices we have ‘got soft’ – slumping in armchairs, spending hours in the car or on the computer, tucking the phone between our ear and our shoulder, taking the lift instead of the stairs, this has left our deep structural muscles weak. Unless these are addressed first and we learn to wake them up and use them properly, we are at risk of injury or back problems. Indeed a lot of back pain is muscle related and those in the medical profession now see Pilates as a complement to their work.
Every exercise is built around eight basic principles, Relaxation, Concentration, Co-ordination, Alignment, Breathing, Flowing Movements, Centering and Stamina. You will be taught to be more aware of your own body, helping you to handle stress and achieve relaxation more easily. Specific areas can be targeted but always in relation to the whole. The aim is a long, lean, strong body avoiding the bulk of some exercise regimes, bringing it into perfect balance and alignment.
You will build what Joseph Pilates called a ‘girdle of strength’ from which you can safely move whilst at the same time gaining an understanding of correct alignment and posture. The exercises are performed slowly without endless repetition, learning to work some areas whilst relaxing others – a great benefit for anyone under stress.
Although hard work, Pilates does not leave you feeling exhausted, drained or bored, you should leave the class feeling refreshed and invigorated. Many of us suffer with bad muscle recruitment patterns and Pilates works to address these problems. You will be encouraged to focus during the session on what your body is doing and to correct these patterns, you have probably lived with these for some years and may not even be aware of them, but may be aware of pain or problems in some areas – correcting bad movement patterns takes time, Pilates is not a quick fix!