Must-Have Equipment for Pilates

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Pilates is a form of exercise that focuses on function, form, and concentration as a way to relaxing the mind and purging the body of harmful emotions and toxins. It differs from yoga since it does not have spiritual or religious elements.

Instead, it develops the body into a form of complete mental and physical control through the use of machines or the body itself. There are some must-have products for Pilates enthusiasts to be able to gain the maximum benefit from the exercise.

Weights

The ideal weights for Pilates exercises should be small weights, not the heavy ones. They are used to intensify a stretch or position. If you are a novice, you can start with very small, 5-lb. weights for help with alignment and bending. They also help them in finding leverage needed to sit up when doing the ‘roll up’ exercise. These are great for repetitions to add muscle to a basic workout. 

Resistance Bands

When you use resistance bands in Pilates, you are strength training without the weights. The bands enhance muscle contraction. Exercising with these gradually and progressively overloads the musculature system to make it stronger. Resistance exercises help in stabilizing the core while developing the size and strength of skeletal muscles. Consistent resistance exercises is said to increase bone mass over time.

Mats

Mats are vital for Pilates. The exercises in Pilates utilize the core muscles. The back, especially lower back, forms a part of the core and stabilization muscles. If you do not support your back by a double-thick mat while exercising, you may end up hurting yourself.  Proper cushioning is the key to safe exercising and so a proper mat is a must to have while performing Pilates.

Magic/Pilates Ring

This ring was developed by Joseph Pilates as a way to increase the resistance level of certain movements. You can buy this ring with various weight resistances. It helps in developing muscles along with enhancing flexibility. It is used to tone upper arms, chest, upper thighs, and the pelvic muscles. Using the ring for arm exercises strengthens the biceps and triceps.

Foam Roller

This Pilates equipment is good for protecting your spine. Most often, during any mat exercise, you may use your cervical spine and neck to do sit-ups or lean-ups. This is a big no since these should not be used for abdominal exercises at all. Use a foam roller beneath your mid-spine and lower back area to engage your abdominal muscles more. It also helps people with poor posture and bad backs.

If you can perform Pilates regularly, whether at home or a studio, you’ll soon find that its benefits are extremely conducive to a healthy lifestyle.