The PILATES theme of the week is PILATES BREATHING:
Joseph Pilates focussed on breathing in all his exercises. He encouraged breathing into the sides of the ribs (not the upper chest or the stomach). This utilised the full expansion of the rib cage while still engaging the deep core muscles and keeping the stomach in.
You can practice this by placing your hands on your lower ribs to encourage you to breath unto your hands, then blow the air out through pursed lips as you engage your deep core muscles.
Exercises like the dumb waiter uses the in breath to open the chest, collar bones and shoulders which helps to correct the posture of the upper back, neck and shoulders and prevents you from stooping or developing a dowager’s hump.
Exercises like the curl up, 100 and series of 5 uses the out breath to blow the air out of the chest, engage the deep core, imprint the spine on the mat while you lift your head and shoulders off the mat. This teaches you to engage your core to correct your posture and protect your low back from adverse strain.
BREATHING FOR RELAXATION:
Download the Breathing App to use for 1 minute of deep breathing as a tool for relaxation. Once you have used the App a few times you will be able to use this technique anywhere at any time. Set the App for 4:6 for 1 minute (4 seconds inhale and 6 seconds exhale for 1 minute (6 breaths).
We have a 14 minute video on our YouTube channel all about posture correction in standing (see Youtube video below):
We hope you enjoy thinking about Pilates breathing this week.