Archive for the ‘pilates’ Category

JUNE 2018 RETREAT WEEKEND

 




What a wonderfully relaxing Pilates and Nordic Walking Retreat weekend everyone had!

The weather was glorious!  The company was welcoming and fun!  The vegan food was fulfilling and delicious!

4 people even immediately re-booked for the next Pilates and Nordic Walking Retreat weekend – 21st – 23rd September 2018.

Once everyone was settled in, the weekend began with a Yoga class taught by Jo De Rosa,  who lives in the house with her husband Dom, the Chef.

Dom cooks the vegan healthy food, with his team, which is served by Jo and her assistant.  Most of the vegetables are grown within the gardens of Inner Guidance Retreat centre, so the food is always fresh.

We truly experience how gluten, dairy, alcohol and sugar-free foods taste and feel so good!

Everyone enjoyed the food and all diet requirements were taken care of.  There were a variety of dishes served, and no-one realised they were on a vegan clean eating style retreat.

As well as morning smoothies and raw cacao drinks, brunches and afternoon cake, we were served 2 course vegan dinners, and as the weather was warm, we were able to enjoy meals outside.  This gave everyone the opportunity to get to know each other.  There was a relaxed atmosphere with lots of chatter and laughter.




4 different types of Pilates classes were taught within the retreat centre studio, whilst listening to the birds outside, as the doors were open looking out onto the gardens across the field of horses.

After brunch on Saturday, Caroline began the Nordic Walking session.  This started with a thorough warm up and technique session, then we walked to Lavenham village.

Some ladies who either had treatments booked or didn’t want to walk so far, turned back guided by me.  There was ample time to spend a couple of hours relaxing in the garden and have a dip in the small swimming pool or the hot tub.

Afternoon cake was left in the cooler as and when we wanted to eat it, which gave everyone the opportunity to relax and choose what they wanted to do.

The evenings were spent walking around the garden, where you will find hammocks and swings, and walk around Labyrinth where much laughter was heard! Stories were also shared around the fire and in the hot tub!

Sunday morning, we learnt about raw Cacao, and Dom gave us a Cacao ceremony which involved some meditation.

As well as the Pilates classes on Sunday, everyone had some time to relax in the garden, enjoy treatments or walk into Lavenham Village.

A variety of holistic treatments offered throughout the weekend by Carol, Angel Therapist, were from a choice of: Rheiki, Massage and Reflexology or the Inner Guidance Special, which incorporates some healing, to coinside well with the purpose of this thoroughly relaxing Retreat Weekend.

If you don’t want to miss out on the next Retreat which is the weekend of 21st-23rd September 2018, please email info@davinaspilateshealthandwellness.com to book your place.

PILATES POWERHOUSE

oilates powerhouse

The powerhouse is one of the most important concepts in Pilates training. In recent years, the term core strength, has become more well-known and is used somewhat interchangeably with powerhouse, but they are not exactly the same.

Students are taught to use their “powerhouse” throughout life’s daily activities. According to Joseph Pilates, the powerhouse is the centre of the body and if strengthened, it offers a solid foundation for any movement.

The powerhouse area of your body goes from the bottom of your ribs all the way to your hip line. It includes the abdominal, low back muscles, pelvic floor, muscles around the hips, and the glutes (butt muscles).

The core muscles are part of the powerhouse set, and using your core is part of using your powerhouse. The core muscles are the deep stabilizers like the pelvic floor, the psoas, the multifidus, and the transversus abdominis, among others. But the core muscles are not the big movers like the rectus abdomis or glutes, that we add to the group when we talk about the powerhouse.

The Powerhouse is activated effectively by hollowing of the deep abdominals, by drawing the navel back into the spine in a zipping-up motion, from the pubic bone to the breast bone.

Pilates beginners need to think in terms of using the powerhouse right away. It is the powerhouse that gives us the energy, stability, strength, and control to move into the intermediate and advanced Pilates exercises. Developing the powerhouse muscles in a balanced way will progress you toward true fitness the fastest.

PILATES PRINCIPLES – CONCENTRATION, CONTROL AND CENTERING

joseph pilates

PILATES is a physical exercuse developed in the early 20th century by Joseph Pilates.

The original six principles were concentration, control, center, flow, precision, and breathing.

Control

“Contrology” was Joseph Pilates’ preferred name for his method and it is based on the idea of muscle control. “Nothing about the Pilates Method should be haphazard. The reason you need to concentrate so thoroughly is so you can maintain control of every aspect of every moment.”

Concentration

Pilates demands intense focus: “You have to concentrate on what you’re doing all the time. And you must concentrate on your entire body for smooth movements.”   This is not easy, but in Pilates the way that exercises are done is more important than the exercises themselves.

Centering

In order for the practitioner to attain control of their body they must have a starting place: the center. The center is the focal point of the Pilates method.  Many Pilates teachers refer to the group of muscles in the center of the body— the abdomen, lower and upper back, hips, buttocks, and inner thighs—as the “powerhouse”.  All movements in Pilates should begin from the powerhouse and flow outward to the limbs.

Flow or efficiency of movement

Pilates aims for elegant sufficiency of movement, creating flow through the use of appropriate transitions. Once precision has been achieved, the exercises are intended to flow within and into each other in order to build strength and stamina. In other words, the Pilates technique asserts that physical energy exerted from the center should coordinate movements of the extremities: Pilates is flowing movement outward from a strong core.

Precision

Precision is essential to correct Pilates: “concentrate on the correct movements each time you exercise, lest you do them improperly and thus lose all the vital benefits of their value”The focus is on doing one precise and perfect movement, rather than many halfhearted ones. Pilates is here reflecting common physical culture wisdom: “You will gain more strength from a few energetic, concentrated efforts than from a thousand listless, sluggish movements”. The goal is for this precision to eventually become second nature, and carry over into everyday life as grace and economy of movement.

Breathing

Breathing is important in the Pilates method.

Joseph Pilates  saw considerable value in increasing the intake of oxygen and the circulation of this oxygenated blood to every part of the body. This he saw as cleansing and invigorating. Proper full inhalation and complete exhalation were key to this. “Pilates saw forced exhalation as the key to full inhalation.” He advised people to squeeze out the lungs as they would wring a wet towel dry.

In Pilates exercises, the practitioner breathes out with the effort and in on the return.  In order to keep the lower abdominals close to the spine; the breathing needs to be directed laterally, into the lower rib cage.  Pilates breathing is described as a posterior lateral breathing, meaning that the practitioner is instructed to breathe deep into the back and sides of his or her rib cage. When practitioners exhale, they are instructed to note the engagement of their deep abdominal and pelvic floor muscles and maintain this engagement as they inhale. Pilates attempts to properly coordinate this breathing practice with movement, including breathing instructions with every exercise. Above all, learn to breathe correctly.

BENEFITS OF PILATES

Pilates is a body conditioning routine that may help build flexibility, muscle strength, and endurance in the legs, abdominals, arms, hips and back.  It puts emphasis on spinal and pelvic alignment, breathing, and developing a strong core or center, and improving coordination and balance.

Pilates’ system allows for different exercises to be modified in range of difficulty from beginning to advanced. Intensity can be increased over time as the body conditions and adapts to the exercises.

Anyone can do Pilates.  It is really beneficial to those suffering from injury and want to build up strength again.  Also just as important to strengthen the muscles we use  in everyday life.

Pilates improves muscle tone, balances musculature, supports correct posture, and teaches to move with ease and grace.