Pilates classes

Fitness 101: 7 Common Pilates Errors to Always Avoid

Pilates classes can benefit your mind and body, whether you’re a veteran athlete or have recently started your fitness journey. This unique exercise routine can strengthen your core muscles, improve posture, and increase flexibility. It’s also an excellent way to minimise stress, improve concentration, and increase energy levels.

Although attending Pilates classes can help you reach your body goals, there will always be room for mistakes, especially for beginners. Making errors is okay, but repeating them several times can hinder you from reaching your fitness goals, practise the wrong technique, and increase your risk of injury. 

If you’re ready to enjoy an optimal workout and achieve your fitness goals, this article will enumerate the seven don’ts to avoid during a Pilates session. 

1. Don’t Squeeze the Muscles

During workout classes, you can commonly hear your instructor telling you to squeeze your muscles. For instance, some teachers tell students to tighten their glutes during the classic Pilates stance. 

However, professionals recommend you avoid doing this. They suggest engaging the muscles without squeezing them too hard, which can cause stiffness and limit movement. Instead, they prefer to “connect” with their glutes.  

2. Don’t Attend Classes with Preconceived Notions

When people enter a gym, they immediately assume that having preconceived notions about a Pilates class can help them advance. Unfortunately, that’s untrue, as this mindset can prevent you from fully experiencing its offers. 

Fitness instructors advise beginners to keep an open mind when approaching the class, as some exercises may not immediately cause a burning sensation but can still effectively engage deep muscles. Also, they encourage students to learn new philosophies and approaches that teachers may bring to the class. 

3. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Not comparing yourself to others or your past self can be tricky, even for experienced students. You should try not to base your abilities on the people around you, as everyone has their unique journey. Also, remain true to yourself and prioritise your body’s needs while not letting your ego interfere. Otherwise, it can cause harm and discomfort. 

4. Don’t Push Yourself Too Hard

Other fitness enthusiasts religiously follow the “No pain, no gain” mantra, assuming they’ll reach their body goals sooner. Unfortunately, that’s untrue, as there’s a line between challenging and overexerting yourself to the point of injury. All students must understand that sharp pain or joint discomfort indicates pushing too far. 

You can prevent damage by making minor adjustments to your movements, like reducing your range of motion or resting your head. Also, while you shouldn’t go easy on yourself, you must know your limits and when you’ve gone too far. 

5. Don’t Hold Your Breath 

Continuously inhale and exhale, and don’t hold your breath during the Pilates exercises. Remember that breathing is crucial to the technique and helps your muscles become more pliable. Also, beginners must not worry about coordinating breath with movement if it’s confusing.

6. Don’t Move without Your Core

Before moving, you must continually engage your core, even when lifting your arms. It enables more range of motion and eases the joints. You cannot do Pilates exercises effectively without doing so, and it can lead to overuse of other muscles. 

7. Don’t Hold a Position

During Pilates classes, there may be moments when it seems like the body isn’t moving much, but the instructor always ensures subtle movement. This step is essential for the exercise flow and makes them more manageable and effective. For instance, maintaining a continuous extension through the arms and legs helps balance when performing a double leg stretch.

Learning to Stretch Correctly

All students will likely commit errors in a Pilates class. However, repeating them can prevent you from achieving your fitness goals and increase your risk of injury. You can maximise these sessions by educating yourself about these mistakes and enrolling in professional sessions. 

If you need gyms near Nunawading and Mitcham with saunas for your incoming Pilates class, visit Element Fitness! Our fitness facility is always open to help you maximise your membership and get your body goals. Enrol in a session or become a member now!