A common question people ask about Pilates is “can I lose weight doing Pilates”? The answer isn’t however a straight yes or no.
Pilates is an exercise system that is designed to improve strength and flexibility and while you will burn calories doing Pilates it isn’t the most effective form of exercise to do if you want to burn fat.
However Pilates helps you to build and maintain muscle and improved muscle tone increases your body’s metabolism. The more muscle you have the more calories are burned – even when your muscles are at rest. This is why many weight loss programs’ emphasize the importance of muscle building as well as cardiovascular exercise in the quest to burn fat.
To lose weight there are 3 components that are essential and these are:
Eat healthily – follow a nutritious balanced diet and avoid foods high in fat and sugar.
Exercise – take regular exercise that gets your heart rate up; swimming, running, cycling and walking are ideal.
Build muscle – increased muscle helps to burn fat and improve the overall tone and shape of your body.
Pilates is an excellent form of exercise to choose if you want to build muscle and improve your general health. If you practice Pilates without improving your diet or without taking any other form of aerobic exercise then your weight loss results may be slow or you may not even lose weight at all. It is better practiced as a part of a healthy weight loss regime.
Pilates and body tone
Pilates exercises work on improving the strength and tone of your muscles. There is a great emphasis on the core (stomach and lower back) muscles and strengthening this area can greatly improve the way your body looks. A strong core can lead to a flatter looking stomach and better posture both of which will help clothes to fit better and make you look slimmer.
The exercises also work on your back, arms and legs and help to give your whole body a lengthened and more toned look. Toning and sculpting are an essential part of the weight loss process because they will help your body to look stronger and seeker.
Pilates and stress
Pilates can help aid weight loss in another less obvious way. Stress can cause people to overeat or indulge in comfort foods that are often high in fat or sugar content. Pilates helps you to relax and improves focus and concentration. This in itself can help your resolve to stick to a healthier way of life.