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The Benefits of Pilates for a Dancer

    The Benefits of Pilates for a Dancer

    Dancers know that certain muscle groups and body parts must be constantly used in the studio and in daily activities. Have you ever questioned how a straddle jump or pirouette looked so effortless? We respond by putting a lot of effort, time, and strength into dancing or exercise. Pilates is a type of exercise that can target various body parts and has several advantages for people in recovery and dancers alike. Consider some of the benefits of Pilates that we’ve outlined below the next time you want to find a new exercise outlet!

    Firstly, What Is Pilates?

    In the 20th century, Joseph Pilates developed Pilates to increase strength, reduce the risk of injury, and serve as rehabilitation. Dancers were one of the artists who joined Joseph’s first studio in New York when it opened. Dancers were fascinated by his technique and anxious to learn more about how the body operated when he collaborated with George Balanchine, the creator of The School of American Ballet. As a result, Pilates is now available to the general public as well as entertainers.

    Its goal is to improve how well breath and movement are coordinated. This exercise has a favorable impact on the joints and calls for fluid movement. Pilates, in contrast to other types of exercise, focuses on toning muscles rather than building muscle. One of its key goals is strengthening the core, which will eventually affect body alignment and balance.


    People can increase their strength through various alternative fitness methods, such as weight training. While dumbbells and Pilates toning balls with weights are frequently utilized in pilates classes, you’ll soon realize that your body weight has the most significant influence. You may develop muscle using specific body regions, such as your calves, thighs, core, and triceps, whether planking or pulsing. This is also clear when doing mat pilates because your body is not dependent on straps or weights. Dancers are frequently instructed to contract their gluteus maximus and core (while remembering to breathe!!). Why? Well, the cornerstone for the execution of powerful movements is core strength, regardless of the form of dance you learn. Fun fact: Your core includes your hips, obliques, and back, in addition to your stomach. Additionally, calf raises on a reformer’s football provide more range of motion when rising and help you reach that stunning relevé.


    Pilates can help you whether you’re worried about mastering your arabesque or want to keep your balance throughout a contemporary work that demands a lot of focus and stability. Pilates exercises can require you to hold several new positions, so you must regain your equilibrium. Although a tippy bird lunge can make you feel unsteady, there are techniques to avoid falling or slipping, just like in dance. Executing various foot positions along the reformer machine’s football creates balance around the pelvis and hip joint, allowing for the development of more excellent range when dancing. You can improve your credit by using your core while you conduct exercises on one leg or alternate arm and leg raise on the mat. Another significant factor is concentrating on a stationary object rather than a moving thing. Additionally, you want to contract your abdominal muscles so that you can tell your body to align your hips. Finally, take things slowly; there’s no need to rush the movements if you need more practice in this area.


    Do you want to polish those développés? First, let’s discuss flexibility in general! On the reformer, flying splits and workouts involving strapped legs are game changers. This kind of motion works your inner thighs and makes you regulate where your weight goes, like from the floor to your extended leg. Dancers know that one cannot just turn on the flexibility switch at will (but wouldn’t it be wonderful if one could!). Instead, repetition and a willingness to learn provide the ability to perform at one’s best. The chance to lengthen your muscles and broaden your range of motion reduces your risk of injury. Additionally, warming up and stretching those muscles before class can help make the effects more visible.


    You will often execute various pilates exercises, whether standing or sitting. For example, one can be expected to use arm muscles while standing sideways on the reformer with the pelvis inclined forward and a leg extended out on the carriage or seated upright on the sitting box with their hands in straps. Keeping your body in alignment will be simpler if your back, glutes, and abs are strong. In addition, these exercises help you improve your technique by encouraging you to keep your eyes forward, roll back your shoulders, and tuck in your buttocks. By taking pilates lessons, posture at the barre will quickly become automatic.

    Where to Begin from Here

    Pilates is an excellent option for anyone searching for their next exercise adventure because it is safe for everyone, including those who are pregnant or recovering from an injury. There is no need to question your ability to participate in a pilates class because you can choose between several levels of resistance on the equipment based on the spring option and having your pilates instructor there to support you. Like many progressions are available in classes, you can train in a style ideal for your body. These may offer numerous benefits that enhance overall physical condition. Check out one of the classes, including reformer pilates, mat pilates, pre or post-natal Pilates, and clinical Pilates, depending on how your body feels to determine whether it’s the appropriate fit for you.

    Learn more: 4 Ways to Improve Your Grasp on Choreography