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Movement

5 Oct 2022

Movement

BASI Pilates as a Movement of Choice

by Wendy Gray from Wonder Health & Wellbeing

In our last BLOG we introduced the 4 Pillars of Health & Wellbeing, and Movement & Exercise as one of those foundational pillars.

As we know, being physically active can improve our brain health, help us manage our weight, reduce our risk of disease, help us optimise our sleep and strengthen our bones and muscles … thereby improving our ability to undertake everyday activities, stay fitter for longer and build up or maintain our health and happiness!

Movement & exercise doesn’t need to be complex, torturous or expensive (kit, clothing, equipment, classes etc) to be hugely beneficial; however there has to be an enjoyment factor to ensure that we stick with it and progress. It may be that we need to try a number of different activities to determine which one works for us. Whichever activity we choose, we should aim to build it up … accepting that we will derive benefit from even small initial changes in activity and prioritising progress over perfection.

Consider some simple things to start… Fresh Air, Breathing & Stretching! … because it really is the simple things in life!

At WONDER Health & Wellbeing (“Wonder”) our “movement of choice” is BASI Pilates… incorporating the simple, and yet highly effective, elements of breathing, stretching and core setting.  BASI stands for Body Arts & Science International and is a school of Pilates that adopts a holistic and contemporary approach to wellbeing. BASI Pilates ticks so many boxes for, and delivers so many benefits to, our community of practitioners.

Why Pilates?

Pilates is a system of physical and mental conditioning that can enhance your physical strength, flexibility and coordination as well as reduce stress, improve mental focus and foster an improved sense of overall wellbeing.

Benefits:

  • Develops many aspects of physical fitness: strength, flexibility, coordination, speed, agility and endurance
  • Heightens body awareness
  • Enhances body control
  • Teaches correct muscle activation
  • Helps keep skeletal muscle strong / keeps musculature and bone structure in an optimal state
    • Note: both bone density and muscle mass start to decrease in our 30s
  • Supports a strong and flexible spine
  • Maintains or corrects posture and alignment
    • Good posture is important for overall wellbeing as it:
      • Reduces aches, pains and headaches
      • Improves circulation and digestion
      • Positively impacts self-esteem
    • Facilitates optimal function of the internal organs
    • Improves balance and proprioception
    • Focuses on breathing and its related physical and psychological benefits
    • Offers a vehicle for concentration and focus
    • Promotes relaxation and the release of tension
    • Serves as a cross-training for athletic pursuits and daily activities – physical performance improves with a Pilates practice; Premier League footballers practice Pilates!
    • Distributes body mass aesthetically (people report looking and feeling slimmer)
    • Provides a path to inner harmony through a finely tuned body

Pilates can be for anyone and everyone!... and delivers Mind & Body Fitness!

Why BASI Pilates? – Body Arts & Science International

What is unique about BASI Pilates is that there is an expectation that what we teach is more than just a workout; that our clients will discover more about themselves and their lives via exercise.  BASI truly values the essence of Joseph Pilates’ work.

BASI Pilates brings an intense focus on the integrity and detail of each exercise ensuring an exceptional mind and body connection! We focus on the correct breath pattern to optimise core setting and maximise the benefit, and safety, of each exercise within our repertoire.

Rael Isacowitz, Founder & President of BASI Pilates, shares this powerful statement in relation to our provision of BASI Pilates instruction:

“by touching one life positively you have changed an entire world, and in doing so have had a positive effect on society as a whole”.

Joseph Pilates, the founder of the Pilates practice in the early 1900s, stated:

  • the “whole” must be exercised to achieve good health
  • aim to correct body alignment and balance
  • the Pilates method teaches you to be in control of your body and not at its mercy
  • the mind, when housed within a healthful body, possesses a glorious sense of power
  • you will feel better in 10 sessions, look better in 20 sessions and have a completely new body in 30 sessions!

Wonder’s founder, Wendy, practices at least 10 mins of BASI Pilates every morning… choosing a limited number of moves but ensuring that the major muscles groups are stretched.  She believes that Pilates satisfies Dr Ranjan Chatterjee’s recommended morning 3Ms: Movement, Mindfulness & Mindset… what a way to start the day!

 For anyone interested in trying Pilates, we recommend that you:

  • work with a qualified and reputable instructor who prioritises core setting instruction… keeping you safe and injury free!
  • spend time getting to grips with the basics, before progressing to the “sexier” intermediate, advanced and master exercises
  • compliment your Pilates practice with a cardiovascular activity several times a week (but again building this up at your pace)

“We don’t stop exercising because we grow old, we grow old because we stop exercising” … Let’s keep moving!

Here’s to a happier and healthier life… breathe, eat well, move and sleep!

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