Is Pilates for men? Totally. It’s a common misconception that Pilates is a workout geared toward women, but history tells us that’s far from the truth! Pilates was developed by a man, Joseph Pilates, and early on, it was used as a form of physical therapy for soldiers injured in battle. At their core, Pilates and Pilates-based workouts are about strength, balance, and treating the body as a whole instead of individual muscle groups. These are excellent principles for any health-conscious person to focus on.
It seems like everyone from actors to professional football players is singing the praises of Pilates, and for good reason (if we do say so ourselves…). Here are some of the benefits of integrating Pilates-based workouts into your fitness routine.
Five Reasons Pilates Is Good for Men
When Joseph Pilates developed Pilates in the 1920s, his initial goal was to increase his own strength and agility. It turned out to be ideal for helping people recover their strength and balance after suffering illnesses or other trauma. The movements are less jarring than many aerobic and weight-based workouts, but they train your muscles for strength and improved reactivity.
There’s so much to love about this fitness category, but here we’re focusing on five benefits of Pilates for men:
- Increase functional fitness. The ultimate goal of Pilates is to help its practitioners feel stronger and more capable in their day-to-day activities. Balance, flexibility, strength, and great body mechanics are vital for everyone. And if those benefits also come with a toned body, it’s a win-win!
- Improve sports performance. Pilates improves agility, core strength, endurance, and flexibility, all of which positively impact sports performance. There’s a reason so many pro athletes are turning to Pilates, and it’s a trend that only seems to be growing. BODYBAR believes that everyone possesses an inner athlete that can be tapped into through the practice of Pilates. We strive to empower our clients to discover their physical potential, enhance their overall well-being, and embody the spirit of an athlete both on and off the Reformer.
- Improve balance. Some popular workouts men do can cause muscular imbalance, as some muscle groups compensate for the overwork of other muscle groups. At BODYBAR, we prioritize finding equilibrium by embracing our Pilates roots while elevating them to deliver our signature workouts.
- Have fewer aches and pains. Improved balance and toning have another benefit: fewer aches and pains. Researchers in multiple studies found that doing Pilates two to three times per week for at least eight weeks resulted in milder symptoms for those suffering from chronic lower back pain. Similar results were found for the treatment of arthritis. There’s also substantial evidence supporting Pilates for injury recovery, as it strengthens weakened muscles without re-injuring them.
- Reduce injuries from overtraining. Men who rely on weight training are susceptible to repetitive motion injuries because they may typically focus on specific muscles or muscle groups. Pilates-based workouts offer a more balanced way to work on target areas, engaging more of the muscles around them. The result: strength, stability, and fewer strains.
Frequently Asked Questions About Men and Pilates
Is Reformer Pilates good for men who want to strengthen and tone?
Reformer Pilates is good for men who want to build functional strength and tone without adding a lot of bulk to their build. The Reformer allows for effective workouts packed into a short class, and the machine makes it easier to use the right form, especially when guided by a good instructor.
Why don’t more men do Pilates?
Some men haven’t tried Pilates because they don’t understand it. They may think it’s for “slimming down” instead of toning up, or that they need to be ultra-flexible to try it. Despite these myths, more men are starting to catch on to the advantages of Pilates.
Is Pilates good for older men?
Yes! Pilates helps older guys maintain core strength and overall mobility through low-impact movements. It’s also simple to develop Pilates routines that work for those with back or knee problems.
What do men wear to Pilates classes?
Your Pilates outfit should be comfortable, flexible, and form-skimming. Slim joggers with a T-shirt are a great combination, for example. Shorts are okay to wear with compression shorts or leggings underneath. Avoid baggy clothes because they could get in the way or expose more than you want others to see.
Curious? Take a Free Class at BODYBAR Pilates
There are Pilates exercises you can try at home, but learning from a professional instructor is ideal because:
- They can coach your form, reducing the chance of injury while you’re learning.
- They can tailor their advice to meet your fitness goals.
- Professional instructors can safely and effectively guide you through using the equipment in our studios, including the Reformer, to help you get the most out of your workouts.
If you’ve been on the fence about incorporating Pilates principles into your workouts, step up to the BAR and give one of our classes a try. You have nothing to lose – your first class is on us!