As a Physique Competitor and Pilates Instructor with 10 Years of experience
I can say that my Pilates teaching and practice has greatly enhanced my intense training in the gym.
In fact, my love for Bodybuilding came after I began taking courses to become a Certified Stott Pilates Instructor as the focus on the anatomy and biomechanics of the human body during my studies increased my own body awareness. Knowledge is power! In Pilates the main focus is on core strength and stability as well as proper postural alignment. A strong core and the practice of knowing where your limbs are "In space" are very important in the gym for injury prevention, not to mention the fact that if your body is properly aligned during any given exercise undue bodily stress and strain is greatly reduced and your mind/muscle connection is greatly enhanced. Another huge focus is on breathing.
In Pilates we use a 3-dimensional breathing pattern, starting with an inhale laterally into the sides and back of the ribcage and engagement of the transverse abdominis (Corset Abdominal) muscles on the exhale, so basically you are waist training during an entire hour-long Pilates session and anyone in physique sports knows how important a tiny, cinched waist is come showtime!
I also find this breathing pattern to be most advantageous to me in the gym and in posing practice as it helps me to stabilize supporting muscles as well as relieve any muscle tension due to an efficient amount of oxygen circulation. Symmetry and balance of the muscle groups are incredibly important in the world of bodybuilding. A great deal of Pilates exercises are unilateral, a lot of attention is payed to the strengths and weakness of each side of the body. Include some Pilates in your fitness regimen today and reap the rewards in the gym and on stage tomorrow!
Learn more about Pilates and Bodybuilding by Following Melissa on Instagram: @melp741