What is the importance of stretching?
Stretching as part of your gym routine before any type of physical exercise is so important to warm up, prepare the muscles of the body and prevent any sports-related injury. Following the advice of the NHS, stretching for sport and exercise improves flexibility, which increases the ability of a joint to move through its full range of motion; in other words, how far it can bend, twist and reach. Some activities, such as gymnastics, require more flexibility than others, such as running.
But stretching in general as part of your day to day life, shouldn’t be forgotten about either, and can help massively with aches, pains and by strengthening and, in some cases, preventing the onset of joint problems.
Why choose pilates over other typically holistic methods?
Meditation is a typically holistic measure which helps with managing anxiety, depression and other mental health issues. It can help to clear your mind and step away from negative thoughts and give you a fresh, new perspective on the day ahead.
For some, pilates can also assist with alleviating and managing symptoms to do with our sense of wellness and emotional wellbeing but its core benefit is building your strength, endurance and flexibility through low-impact activity.
One is not necessarily better than the other, the best choice for you always depends on your individual requirements and what you want to achieve from a physical or a mental perspective.
What are other popular forms of alternative exercise?
There are many other non-traditional exercises that you can try other than just pilates and meditation. Here are some of the most popular alternative gym routines:
Yoga – A spiritual and holistic exercise which focuses predominantly on strength, flexibility and breathing to boost physical and mental wellbeing. The main components of yoga are certain postures and focusing on your breathing.
Aerobics – Often associated with an older audience, think aerobic exercises with stretching and strength training routines with the overall goal of improving flexibility, muscular strength, and your cardiovascular fitness.
Zumba – Who says your gym routine can’t be fun? Zumba is a fitness-party with a blend of Latin and international rhythms that provides an effective workout to a global community, either at home or in the gym itself.
Pole Fitness – Pole dancing is actually an amazing calorie-burning cardiovascular exercise which uses the muscles in the entire body and really builds your core strength and flexibility whilst being a fun physical activity that doesn’t feel like a workout!