If you are like most people who workout, then you probably save your sit ups and crunches until the end of your workouts. And if you are one of those people, then you either probably only dedicate a few minutes or sets to your abdominals. Or even sometimes you drop it altogether because you've looked at your watch and either have run out of steam or time. The problem here is that your abdominals need to be more of a focus. Your core needs to be more in focus. So, if you don't like doing crunches, maybe Pilates is a viable alternative.
Pilates is an exercise modality creates by Joseph Pilates in the aftermath of WWI, as a means of helping to rehabilitate injured soldiers. Pilates emphasizes the importance of core strength and flexibility. Any Pilates instructor will tell you, that core flexibility is reliant on more than just your abdominals. Thus, just doing abdominals crunches will not create optimal core strength.
If you do abdominal exercises, you will work your lower abdominals, upper abdominals, and your oblique muscles. When done right, possibly with the help of a personal trainer, they will get stronger. However, you cannot neglect the back and expect to have full trunk support. Similar to a tree, when someone weakens the trunk by trying to chop it down, eventually the tree buckles and falls over from the loss of support on that side. By working with a Pilates Manhattan instructor you will learn to not only strengthen your stomach muscles, but also to strengthen your lower back and hips, as well as improve your balance.
A Pilates instructor will begin with some basic movements such as a plank, a side kick, a roll up, and a hundred. Pilates not only helps to give you strong abdominals, but it also focuses on alignment and flexibility. These beginner exercises illustrate how the modality of Pilates will concentrate on more than just your abdominals, by adding in your hip flexors, lower back, and even your arms. Most importantly, you are strengthening the whole core.
As of 2005, over 11 million people, including 14,000 instructors were following the movement started by Joseph Pilates. Since then, that number has steadily risen. If you walk down the streets of New York City, the evidence is there to back the rise up, as more and more Pilates Manhattan studios are opening. Remember, before beginning any exercise program, see your doctor for a physical and medical clearance.