It’s no secret that Mat Pilates is one of the best and toughest of all the Pilates apparatus. Yep, I think the Mat is a piece of Pilates equipment. It’s also what Joseph Pilates created first and wanted people to do every day. Until he realized just how hard it was! But, you don’t have to be an old pro to get down with the Pilates Mat. The Mat work will meet you where you are in your fitness level and Pilates practice. So, why don’t we make the Mat something you can do on a rainy day, busy day or even a sunny day on the beach?
One of the common misconceptions of Pilates is that its an ab workout. But, then when I say, no it’s not just an hour of ab workout and explain how thorough Pilates truly is for our body it’s easy to see why people might think it is all about the abs. I mean, if everything begins in the center and moves out how is Pilates it not an ab workout?
I am often asked why I love Pilates and I usually respond by asking people if they have done Pilates. Why? Well, if you have done Pilates with a passionate teacher then you probably have some love for Pilates too. And, if you haven’t then my love for Pilates will probably sound like a crazy obsession!!!
I used to LOVE when the Criss Cross came up in my Mat Pilates practice! I would do extra reps if I could. But, then when the Saw would arrive I couldn’t wait for it to be over. And, then Corkscrew would come up and I would fall in love with Twists again. But, I’ll never forget when I finally got Spine Twist. I absolutely LOVED it!
It’s easy to think that going upside down in the Pilates work is all for the “advanced” practitioner! Or, that you are not ready yet. But, I feel that if you use some of the earlier Mat exercises as tools your body will not only learn how to go upside down well it will yearn for it!
In this week’s collaboration with Andrea Maida we discuss the exercises on the mat that go upside down- Roll Up, Jackknife, Corkscrew, High Scissors/Bicycle and Control Balance.
I’ll never forget my first Pilates class! In fact, I feel like I have talked about this class often here. But, that first Pilates Mat class really got me hooked! And, also, as I look back on it I realize just how far my own Pilates practice has come.
The first Pilates mat class I took I didn’t know that my legs shouldn’t lift off the mat when I rolled up. As you may know, most Pilates mat classes do not have mats that have straps, handles and a weighted pole for each student. In fact, most students use a Yoga mat for their Pilates practice. Which is not the same.
I find that so many people dislike the Pilates Open Leg Rocker on the mat. And, I get it, it’s that fun when it doesn’t come easy for you. But, what if you could turn on what’s not turning on?
After three weeks of rolling around, I couldn’t stop thinking about rolling exercises. So, as Andrea Maida and I leave three weeks of rolling exercises for three weeks of Magic Circle I had to show off my three favorite ways to add Magic to the Pilates mat exercise Rolling Like a Ball.
I used to think I was a rockstar at “Rolling like a Ball.” But, after many years I discovered how much I was using momentum! Do you find yourself thinking rolling exercises are fun back massages?
When I first discovered Pilates it was on the mat. I was invited to a mat Pilates class and I fell in love with how it made me feel. I honestly didn’t even know, see or get on the equipment for almost two years. I couldn’t tell you which was better in Pilates the Mat or the Reformer.