9 Ways In Which Runners Benefit From Pilates
Running might look like the simplest form of sport that requires minimal effort, but only a runner knows the hard work that goes behind the scenes. Just like any other sport, runners also need to maintain a strict workout regimen to keep up their game. But as a runner, have you ever thought of introducing something new into your workout routine to step up your game? We have an idea- Pilates!
Pilates is brilliant, no doubt about that, but it is one of the best forms of exercise for runners. Since running in itself is a demanding physical activity, what you will need as a runner is something that maintains and improves your performance without draining all your energy. Still confused? Don’t worry, check out these 9 ways in which runners can benefit from Pilates.
Pilates Help You Build A Strong Core
Running is not just about your legs and speed. What makes a runner a good runner is overall strength and a strong core, which is absolutely indispensable when it comes to maintaining good performance.
A strong core ensures a smooth movement of your pelvis, lower back, and hips, which reduces your energy expenditure. Also, having a strong core improves your balance and which in turn helps to improve your overall performance.
Pilates Assist In Injury Management And Quick Recovery
If you are a runner, then you will agree that on-track injuries are pretty common yet disastrous for your upcoming events. Although injuries on the field cannot be completely avoided, you can certainly reduce the chances through Pilates.
Pilates help you correct muscle imbalance, incorrect posture and strengthen your weak muscles, all of which are factors that can lead to an injury while running. Also, while recovering from an injury, Pilates provides you a way to exercise without putting too much stress on your body and hence enables a faster recovery.
Improved Mobility And Flexibility
One of the biggest benefits that runners can derive from Pilates is improved mobility and flexibility. To perform well on the track, runners need to focus on their flexibility along with their speed.
Practicing Pilates makes your joint movements smoother by moving them through their maximum range. Especially, the hip joint and knee joints of a runner needs to maintain a higher degree of mobility to improve their stride length, maintain a proper running gait, and prevent muscle injuries.
Pilates Improve Breathing Control
Most runners will agree that shortage of breath is a real problem on the tracks that can affect one's performance to a great degree, but Pilates can save you from a mid-run shortage of breath. Practicing Pilates strengthens your respiratory system by teaching you to synchronize your breath with your body movement.
It also strengthens your diaphragm and enables it to expand to a greater degree. When you master the art of synchronizing your breath during Pilates, you will automatically learn to control and harmonize your breath while running.
Therefore, you not only benefit by learning to control your breathing but with your breathing in harmony, you will have a better focus on your performance, and adequate oxygen will improve your endurance and delay the onset of fatigue.
Pilates Promote A Faster Recovery
Pilates is an excellent post-training exercise. It helps your muscles relax after a long session or running and gives the worn-out tissues a time to recover without putting too much stress on your joints.
Being low impact, it helps your body relax the strained muscle and lead it through a proper cooling down period hence preparing your body for the next training session. It also works great when you are recovering from an injury and, in fact, reduce the total recovery time so that you can go back on the tracks faster.
Pilates Improves Your Posture
One important factor that impacts your performance is your posture. A few meters into the race, when your body starts experiencing fatigue, runners often tend to slouch their shoulders, which impacts their performance and reduces their speed.
Pilates will help you improve your posture, align your neck, back and hips so that you don't lose posture during your performance. After all, poor posture does not just impact your performance but can also cause injury.
Pilates Are A Full Body Workout
Pilates does not just focus on one particular area, but it focuses on your entire body. A single set of exercise that brings in multiple benefits, including improved strength, better endurance, increased flexibility, and enhanced performance.
Runners have a very strenuous schedule when it comes to their physical activity, given running in itself is an arduous physical activity. Hence Pilates is your best option. It helps you work on your entire body and on multiple factors without adding much extra stress on top of your rigorous training.
Pilates Offer A Variety
When you are running every day, you are essentially working the same set of muscles daily. This could lead to reduced efficiency and make you more prone to injury due to overuse of the same muscle group.
Pilates offers you a much-needed break from the pattern. It does not just work all the other muscles of your body in a different pattern but also, being low-impact, you have a way to exercise and maintain your health without putting excess strain on your joints that are already under too much strain from the running session.
Pilates Make You Aware Of Your Body
The key to success in any sport is to be aware of your body. Your strengths and weakness, points of your body that needs to be worked on, and knowing the correct posture. As we already discussed, synchronized breathing is a major part of Pilates. Synchronized breathing increases your focus and helps you understand your body better.
Now how does it affect your performance? Let us explain. When your breathing is under control, your body and mind relax, and you can better focus on understanding your posture and how that affects your performance.
Also, you realize the benefit of synchronized breathing, and you try to apply the same when you are on track. The collaboration of all these factors helps you understand your body better and hence enhances your performance.
So these were the 9 ways in which runners can benefit from Pilates. We hope this article was helpful to you. You can clearly derive the multiple benefits of Pilates from the above points but if you still have any queries, feel free to let us know in the comment section below!