Why Aren’t You Getting the Expected Results in Your Pilates Routine?
Not getting the results you were expecting doing Pilates? The problem is not you, it can often be the marketing that you were receiving, or maybe the style of teaching that you’re getting. In this video I’m going to explain to you how to ensure that you get the best results doing Pilates.
Hi, I’m Lesley Logan, co-founder of onlinepilatesclasses.com. I’ve been teaching Pilates since 2008. My teacher studied with Joseph Pilates, which makes me a second generation instructor and I have taught thousands of people around this world how to do Pilates and how to get the results they’re looking for.
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The Importance of Basics for Maximum Results
Let’s talk about the basics. Because a lot of times people skip those. And really the basics, the foundations are exactly what you need to get those results. First, what is Pilates? And I know that sounds like a weird basic but the truth is there’s so many people out there saying that what they do is Pilates and it might not be and therefore that’s why you’re not getting the results.
So, Pilates is a low impact fitness exercise, which means a lot of people will assume all low impact fitness is Pilates, but it’s not. There’s a low impact fitness and Pilates happens to be part of that. It is a strength based exercise routine, which means every exercise that’s here is designed to strengthen your entire body and work the whole body at one time. So there’s no spot training, there’s no like ‘I’m doing the glute thing here, it’s arm day over here’. Every exercise is full body all the time.
Also, we focus on quality over quantity. So the best you can do for an exercise for as many reps which is under 10, usually around three to five. And then you move on to the next thing. If you’re wanting to know more about what Pilates is, and dive deeper to see if it’s the right thing for you check out our video on What is Pilates.
Mastering Pilates for Fantastic Results – Form, Breathing, and Choosing the Right Teacher
Other things that have been going on is that your form needs to be accurate. It’s not about choreography. And if Pilates feels easy for you, chances are you’re just not doing it right. And if the teacher that you have isn’t able to correct you in a way that helps you get the most out of it, then you’re definitely not going to get those results, right? So we have a video for beginners on like what you should be considering when doing Pilates, what you to want to be thinking about and in there we discuss form and also how to find a teacher that works best for you, what are the qualifications you’re looking for.
But if you are over curling up or under curling up, you’re not activating as many muscles in your body as you would need to to get the strength that you’re looking for. Or if you round your spine with your shoulders forward that’s also why you’re not getting the posture you’re looking for. If you are able to do two hours of classes every single day and you’re fine, you have no burn, you don’t have any soreness the next day, chances are you’re doing the choreography, you’re working on quantity and not actually getting that quality of movement. And so what I want you to look at is your form. And also making sure that the teacher you’re working with is right for you.
Also, breathing is so so key. A lot of times people are holding their breath. This causes stress. Stress raises cortisol in your body, cortisol we already know, doesn’t actually do anything good for helping us get results in our practice. And so you want to be making sure you’re focused on this. First of all, if you can breathe in and out through your nose the whole time you’re practicing. Second of all, you want to also double check that you’re breathing into your lungs and not into your belly. I know that sounds weird. Don’t we breathe into our belly? Yes, we do when we’re doing everything else in life, but when we’re doing Pilates, you want to be focusing on lateral breath work. And so if you have questions about what that is, you want to dive deeper and nerd out with me, check out our video on lateral versus diaphragmatic breathing.
What Results Can You Expect from Pilates?
So, what to expect in the results you’re getting with Pilates? Well, I think it’s important to focus on like what you’re looking at right now. A lot of times people come into Pilates for some that’s more aesthetic. And so that’s the results you’re looking for. And they might miss they’re getting tons of results in their mental health and mental quality of life, right? So really taking time to just check in with yourself where you are right now before you start to practice. If you’re already been doing it, great. How are you doing right now before you go in? Because that’s going to help you understand how far you’ve come. So at the end of a class, you can even check in with yourself, how am I feeling right now? Do I feel more positive? Do I feel less stressed out? You can be having results every single day you can be having all these amazing benefits. But sometimes we’re so focused on this high achieving goal, this goal, it’s so far out there that we miss that we’re actually making progress along the way.
The other thing I want you to actually double check in is this. Notice what exercises you struggle with now, and then over time, what exercises are becoming more possible. At onlinepilatesclasses.com every single quarter we do a flow class where it’s more, it’s a quarterly check in, we do the exercises and the idea is that you write down what exercises were easier for you that day, and which ones were harder. And ideally, you do that same class a couple times that week to see ‘Oh, on Mondays I really struggled because I work over the weekends, but by Thursday, I felt a lot better about myself’ And then we can see with each quarter, which exercises are becoming more accessible and which ones we’re still struggling with so that we can go redesign classes that help you with those struggles that you have.
Another important key to realize is that Pilates never really gets easier. So you’ve been doing it for a really long time and expecting it to become easier. So sorry, it doesn’t get easy. It gets more possible because you get stronger, you start to apply more and more of your muscles to each exercise. So sometimes they just feel harder, but you’re doing them, which is this really exciting thing.
Celebrate Progress and Embrace Self-Love
Another trick is to create consistency in your practice. To get these results, you have to celebrate yourself, make sure you check out my video on how to achieve your goals and how to create habits. You have to celebrate what you did do. So if you are unable to do a couple of exercises, and all you do is shame yourself, that’s not going to help you get results because it’s not going to make it fun for you to show up again. So you got to celebrate what you did do. At onlinepilatesclasses.com we actually believe it’s brave and courageous to replace an exercise, you can’t do yet with one that you can do. And eventually over time you build the endurance, you build the strength. And you can add that in.
Also important to compare yourself to yourself. I’ve talked about this already. But something that I want you to get in the habit of is not looking around the people in your class or the person on the screen and comparing you to them that we all have different body types. My legs are really, really long, my torso is really short. How I look in a Teaser and how you look in a Teaser are two different things. So it’s really important that you are comparing yourself to yourself, you can use other people for inspiration, but really making sure you celebrate what you did do.
And then when it comes to these results, you’re looking for double checking that they’re actually the ones you want, and not ones you think you should want. In life, it’s really easy for us to think we need to look a certain way or be a certain way. And we’re putting expectations on ourselves that are unachievable or not really what we want, and then we shame ourselves along the way. So, setting goals you actually want, and then noticing the micro changes along the way.
And lastly, I just have to point this out. Y’all as we get older, our bodies change and life changes, and we’ve got to be kinder to ourselves. Results do not have to always be aesthetic, your body can change over time, and you could still be getting stronger. So be really kind to yourself.
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Setting Up Your Pilates Goals – The Truth About Progress and Results
Alright, let’s talk about setting goals for yourself realistic ones, right? First, if you are new, you need to allow yourself to be new, there are going to be a ton of exercises you feel are impossible that you can’t do, that look the same as someone else doing it. That is okay. You know what Joseph Pilates used to say? Here I’m gonna tell you what he says, and I’m gonna tell you what everyone says. Everyone says ‘in 10 sessions, you’ll look different, in 20 sessions you will feel different, in 30 sessions, you’ll have a whole new body’. Guess what they don’t say? What Joseph Pilates would say is ‘if you do this four to five times a week’. And then he also said ‘or your money back’, which I bet you no one else is saying to you either.
So here’s the deal, Pilates does get you results. However, you do have to be doing it multiple times a week. And I know not everyone has an hour. So do not set a goal ‘I’m going to do Pilates every day for an hour for 30 days straight‘. I know you’re being marketed that, I know the ads are showing you ‘look the body I got with 30 days of wall Pilates‘ Lies, lies. Here’s the deal, watch our video on weight loss and Pilates. Watch our video on how to actually achieve your goals. But also, please note that weight loss comes with nutrition and hormones being checked out. And Pilates is a great way to strengthen your body and support those practices that you’re doing. But you can do a lot of amazing things in Pilates and not lose weight. And you’re still hitting goals, you’re still achieving results, you’re still having better posture, better digestion, better mental health.
So it’s really important to me that you understand that Pilates is a consistent practice, that being a beginner is really, really awesome. And to allow yourself to be that beginner and take note of the exercises you can’t do yet. And make sure that the teacher you’re with can help build a plan for you to achieve those goals. But please, please do not fall for any of the ads on YouTube. Any of the ads on your social media that’s promising you dramatic weight loss or being a different size or any of these things in one week or 30 days. Your body takes time to make changes. And the more you focus on your mental health and strengthening your muscles, the more you’re going to see results, the better time you’re going to have along the way, and the stronger you’re going to feel. And all of that, all of that creates this dopamine that makes you feel more positive. That to me is way more important in this life.
Embrace Curiosity, Challenge Yourself, and Elevate Your Practice
And look, maybe you’ve been practicing Pilates for a really long time. So you’re like ‘Lesley that’s awesome for beginners. I completely agree. But what about me?’ So here’s the deal, you are going to go through an entire journey in your life that’s outside of Pilates and what Pilates needs to be for you is a practice where you can be curious, curious place, not where you are letting your mind wander to your grocery list of these other things you can do but just spend time as this movement meditation and ask yourself what exercises are feeling easy, because as I’ve already mentioned, if it’s feeling easy, you’re probably not getting as much out of it as you can. The more advanced we get, the harder the beginner exercises are.
When I say beginner I’m always thinking in air quotes because Joseph Pilates didn’t have any levels. He didn’t have beginner, intermediate, advanced, he just had Your exercises. So those foundational exercises that you learned, if they’re feeling easy, chances are there’s something missing from the form. There’s something missing from the concept or the goal that you want in that exercise. And so let me know in the comments below what exercises are feeling really easy for you, because we can talk about it in our live chats on Sundays. Because I want you to find that there’s another level, it’s like almost like a mountain with no peak, right? We just keep going. Not in a way that like we never achieve anything, but in a way that we get to continually challenge ourselves.
And so I’ve been there. I’ve had times in my practice where I’m like, okay, here we go. But you want to know what? Here’s what I love, because I do teach the order. If you take any of my classes, you’ll notice we always start with 100 on the Mat, we always start with the footwork on the Reformer. Why? Certainty, a way to compare myself to myself, and also I get to be curious, and ‘oh, that I didn’t feel that before in this exercise’, or ‘oh, I’m not feeling what I normally feel here’, and allows me to get to know myself more, to understand my practice better and to challenge myself.
Should Pilates Be Your Sole Fitness Focus?
Should you do anything other than Pilates? Well, first of all, when I say Pilates, I am thinking about the Mat and the equipment. And we have videos that talk about the different types of equipment, we have videos that talk about Pilates and yoga, Pilates and the Reformer, and Mat versus the Reformer, so check all of those out. But ideally, if you have access to other piece of equipment, I want you doing them because the other piece of equipment will affect your Mat practice, if you’re only doing the Mat and expecting the results of Pilates, I will be really honest with you, you can absolutely get them, it just might take a little bit more time, especially if you are missing some of the strings you need, the other equipment can support, okay?
The other thing is, I don’t just do Pilates. In fact, I lift heavy weights, I weight train with my husband and my father. At the gym, we lift heavy weights, I find that to be really helpful for me because I’m a hyper mobile body. So lifting those heavy weights really does help me tighten up some of those muscles that are just a little loosey goosey. And also, there were some exercises in Pilates that were eluding me for so long, and lifting those heavy weights actually really did help me have access to them. I don’t spend a lot of time with cardio, that doesn’t work for my body right now. Also, I found it to be quite stressful on my body. So that’s not where my practice is. But you can do any other type of fitness modality and Pilates is just going to make it better, right?
You can check out our video about Pilates for athletes, it’s really important to me that you are not just a, you only do one thing, and it’s got to be like this. It’s okay to expose yourself and see how Pilates is helping you with all those other things. I also do practice yoga about once a week. And it really does help me find another way to stretch and challenge what Pilates has done for me. If you’re looking for results also doing other things other than Pilates helps you see ‘whoa, I couldn’t do that before’. So if you’re wanting to know about Pilates versus yoga, we’ve got that informational video for you. Little spoiler alert, it means doing both. But here’s the deal. I know you’re busy, I know you don’t have all the time in the world to do all the fitness modalities. So first of all, make sure you make time for consistency in your Pilates practice. And then add in other things that get you excited, maybe it’s just going for a walk outside enjoying the sunshine. That’s great, too.
Picking the Perfect Pilates Teacher to Unleash Your Best Results!
I mentioned this earlier, but I want to dive in a little bit deeper so that you have the tools you need to find the teacher that’s right for you. Results do depend on having a teacher who understands method, period. At onlinepilatesclasses.com. all of our teachers have done multiple comprehensive trainings, over 450 hours per training and just understanding the method and decades of experience, right? So we are able to be dedicated to your personal goals when you come and personalize the classes to those goals, because of our depth of experience and our knowledge of the entire Pilates practice. So even if you’re only taking the Mat work, because we know about the entire rest of the method, we can support you in getting results with just the Mat.
If you’re someone who wants to do in person Pilates and wondering whether you’re selecting the right teacher for you, we explain what to look for in a certified instructor. But if you are someone who would like freedom to take class, wherever you are, whenever you want with whatever you have access to, I mean seriously, just space on the floor is all you need. Then check out onlinepilatesclasses.com/free. You can do our trial and see if we’re the right person for you.
But guess what we also do? We also will watch a video of you doing an exercise and give you feedback on your form. Yes, we do that. Because oftentimes it’s a simple placement of a hand you have to change or a foot or maybe getting an extra prop to help you get these results. You need to find a teacher who’s dedicated to your results as much as you are. Otherwise, you’re going to find teachers who are there. They’re awesome. They have a good playlist. They get you to feel the burn in a moment, but you’re not getting the results you’re looking for. Not because they don’t want you to have them but oftentimes they just don’t have the training to help you get there.
Cheers to Lifelong Results with Pilates!
Here’s the deal. I cannot wait for you to enjoy the results and the benefits of this Pilates practice, they continue for your entire life. This is not something you do one time, get the results and move on. It’s something you get to add in your life and as you get older Pilates grows with you. So I’m really really excited for you. If you have any questions put in the comments below. Thank you so much for watching this and make sure you subscribe to this channel, hit the notifications and join us on our Sunday lives so we can answer your questions. Have an amazing day.