Pilates is a wonderful addition to any training plan, especially for runners. It builds strength, stability and power without being high impact and can also increase mental toughness. A technique based system of moves designed to develop muscle balance, increase muscle control, improve mobility and mind body connection, practice is a must do for faster running. Here are the biggest benefits you’ll receive when you add pilates to your program.
Create muscle balance. Pilates focuses on every muscle in the body not just the big ones we use over and over. Strengthening weaker muscles while maintaining stronger ones means you’ll perform everything from daily activities to running a marathon with more ease and less risk of injury.
Lengthen to strengthen. Pilates encourages muscles to stretch and reach. Since running doesn’t require most muscles to move through an entire range of motion, pilates will make muscles stronger from end to end. Strong muscles all the way through makes them able to produce more power with each contraction and that means faster running.
Low impact. After all those miles on the road, track, trail and treadmill, it’s nice to give your body a break with a workout that keeps you off your feet. Not only will the variety of a pilates session give your body a new challenge, your bones will appreciate the break.
Better breathing. Pilates teaches you how to use your diaphragm and use the full capacity of your lungs for each breath. Deeper breathing keeps your heart rate down, lowers recovery time and keeps muscles going longer. Less cardiovascular stress when running through fuller, deeper breaths means faster finish times.
Relax. Deep breathing combined with long, slow, full range of motion movements give you an opportunity to relax. The concentration required to perform moves correctly also means you’ll have to clear your head of the day’s stress and pay exclusive attention to what your body is doing.
Add pilates to your routine on any day you want a good strength workout, any time you need a good recovery stretch or whenever you want to give yourself a new challenge. Your posture, breathing, balance and running will all improve. Click here to find a quality instructor near you!