I was alternating between wellness focus and fitness focus when trying to come up with the first part of the title for this post.
Dictionary.com defines wellness as:
1. the quality or state of being healthy in body and mind, especially as the result of deliberate effort.
2. an approach to health care that emphasizes preventing illness and prolonging life, as opposed to
emphasizing treating diseases.
And fitness as:
1. the state of being fit
a. the degree of adaptation of an organism to its environment, determined by its genetic constitution
This wellness focus is about Pilates. Pilates is an exercise system designed to stretch, strengthen and balance the body. It was created by Joseph Pilates and was originally referred to as Contrology. Joseph was originally from Germany but lived in England in 1914 where he worked as a circus performer and a boxer. He was interned by British authorities during World War I and while there he started teaching his system to his fellow inmates. It’s well documented that those who practiced his method survived the great flu outbreak of that period. When he was transferred to a different camp he became the caretaker to many bedridden internees, and used his “Contrology” to help them restore joint function, muscle strength and re-educate the body. He eventually emigrated to the US around 1925 where he continued teaching his system. It is still practiced today as he intended by classical Pilates teachers.
Pilates is a big part of my personal system for wellness. I practice it regularly and back in this post I talked about starting the process to become certified as a Pilates teacher. I started with the level one certification that year and the next year became certified as a level II Pilates teacher.
The most widely used equipment in classical Pilates are the mat, the reformer, the chair the cadillac/trapeze table and the ladder barrel. In the pictures below my Pilates instructor is putting me through the paces on the different apparatus. I’ve included them for anyone who might be curious as to the different types of Pilates exercises. Please note that I am not by any means perfect. Pilates is a life long discipline in my opinion so I still take classes regularly to work on my own personal practice. I also feel that the best teachers never stop being students themselves.
|Arabesque 1 on the Pilates Reformer|
- Challenges balance and control
- Works Hamstrings
|Prepping for “Spread Eagle” on the trapeze performed on a Cadillac|
- Works sequential articulation/extension of the spine
- Uses the body weight to strengthen the body
- Works biceps/lats
|Exercises on the Pilates Chair|
- Balance and control
- Challenges and strengthens the powerhouse(core/abs)
|Working on “Swan” on the Ladder Barrel|
- Strengthens the back and abdominals
The plan is to make “Wellness Focus” a regular part of the blog. I think I’ll start posting my monthly workouts (you can find some other exercise related posts here) again along with things that have contributed to my overall health for the month.
How about you? What’s your wellness focus as we enter the halfway point of 2014?
**P.S. I do believe that when this posts it will be my fifth straight Sunday posting. Yippee!
I think a giveaway is in order. Thank you to all who have taken the time to visit and comment.
See you next week !