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Who can participate in Pilates?

Pilates is appropriate for people of any age or fitness level. Pilates' unique approach to fitness allows any level, from a beginner to an athlete, to set their goals and work on their individual needs.

I have done Pilates before - do I have to take an Introductory class?

All new clients who choose to participate at The Pilates Loft are strongly encouraged to take at least one (1) private session with a certified instructor prior to moving into any group class. Due to differences in teaching styles among studios and gyms and for pure safety purposes, it is in our clients best interest to have one of our instructors give approval for each client to move into group class and/or onto the next class level. However, if a new client is free from any recent surgeries, injuries or pregnancy and have no limitations to movement, they are welcome to try our Level 1 or Level 1/2 group classes. If you have any questions about this policy, please call us.

What do I wear?

Comfortable, form fitting exercise clothes are best. Dress comfortably so that your movement is free, but try not to wear clothing that is too loose fitting as you will be performing exercises that could cause a loose shirt to drift up the torso or loose shorts to fall open at the hip. Over sized clothes make it difficult for the instructor to observe your body during the workout. Shoes are not required and socks are optional.

How often do you recommend a Pilates workout?

"In 10 sessions you will feel a difference; in 20 sessions you will see a difference and in 30 sessions you will have a whole new body."- Joseph Pilates

With any form of exercise, consistency is key. In the beginning, your body is learning a lot of new information and your mind/body connection is being established. The optimal recommendation is 2-3 times per week, however, once a week on a very regular basis can also be beneficial, providing you are doing some other exercise during the week.

Can I participate in Pilates if I have back problems or other injuries?

Joseph Pilates originally designed this system of movement as a rehabilitation tool. Pilates develops strength, stability, balance and symmetry to areas of the body that may have been misaligned due to an injury. If you have been recently injured, it is recommended that you first obtain a release from your physician to participate in the Pilates Exercise Program.

If you are managing a chronic illness, please be sure to note this on your client information form and share the details with your instructor so we can ensure your regimen is appropriate for you.

Will I be sore from my session?

That depends on your body awareness and fitness levels. Pilates does not fatigue the muscles to exhaustion, rather it uses movement patterns, mental focus and muscle memory to build strength and awareness into the body. Pilates leaves you energized and while you may experience some soreness as your body experiences changes, you will not experience debilitating soreness.

Why is Pilates instruction so expensive?

Pilates instructors are highly trained professionals who have invested well over 700 hours of training and studying of the technique. Instructors are required to learn over 500 exercises for the mat and Pilates equipment. They learn the philosophy and theory behind each movement, spend considerable time observing and mastering proper form and sequences, and apprentice to fine tune their teaching skills prior to taking a series of rigorous written and practical exams. In addition to learning the Pilates moves, they learn how to assess their students posture, how to adapt exercises for various body conditions, and how to customize the optimum Pilates program for each individual client.

Will I lose weight from doing Pilates?

Pilates is designed to help you reshape your body and mind. Using different types of apparatus as well as the weight of your own body, the system helps to tone your muscles and elongate areas such as the waistline and upper thighs and arms. Adding Pilates to a healthy diet and regular cardiovascular exercise can dramatically change your overall appearance.

How is Pilates different from yoga?

Joseph Pilates was inspired both by eastern and western forms of exercise and wellness principles while developing his method, so there are many similaities. The breathing is different; in Pilates, you are asked to scoop your stomach in rather than allowing it to expand with breath as done in yoga. Pilates is more dynamic, focusing on movement rather than the holding of postures as yoga dictates.

Can I learn Pilates from a video?

While you can learn choreography of the exercises from a video, it can be quite frustrating to learn something entirely new from a video. A certified instructor is there to carefully guide you through the parts of each exercise, focusing on form and correct beathing. If you have been studying Pilates with an instructor and have a solid understanding of the principles and exercises, videos are an excellent way to incorporate new exercises and ideas into your current workout.

Do men participate in Pilates?

Of course! The Pilates method was designed by a man, Joseph Pilates. Everyone from professional athletes to regular guys notice significant benefits using the Pilates Method of Body conditioning.

What results can I expect from doing Pilates?

You can expect an increase in flexibility, mobility, balance, improved posture and overall strength, as well as a decrease in back pain/other general body pains. Many participants report a reshaping of the body, elongation of the waistline and upper thigh regions.

Is it safe to do Pilates during pregnancy?

Note: The following information should NOT be substituted for medical advice from your doctor. Please consult your physician for information on what will be appropriate for you during your pregnancy. The available information on pregnancy and exercise can be very confusing- even conflicting. During a normal, healthy pregnancy, moderate exercise is safe for the fetus. Exercise is also said to prevent vericose veins, hemorrhoids and low back pain and helps to boost self esteem, maintain fitness levels and prepare the body for the physical demands of motherhood.

A woman's body goes through many changes during pregnancy and exercise must be adapted and modified as the pregnancy progresses. The beauty of Pilates is that it can be individualized for anyone's ability. Workouts and schedules during the first trimester may have to be adjusted around fatigue levels. Over the course of the pregnancy the demand on the abdominal muscles should be decreased. During the second trimester these muscles become stretched out, and some women experience diastases recti (separation of the abdominal muscles). With reduced abdominal support there is greater risk of injuring the lower back. It is important to continue strengthening and rebalancing the muscles around the joints- supporting the body as it goes through postural changes related to pregnancy.