Where Are You Cheating in Pilates or Life ?

I often say to my clients in Pilates class, when I am talking about a particular movement “you can do this the cheating way or the Pilates way”. The cheating way is when you let the dominant muscles do all the work therefore making the movement appear somewhat easier or we can do it the Pilates way and fully engage the stabilising muscles that the practise focuses on. 

Pilates is energetically expensive

Pilates is energetically expensive because it works your muscle groups in both directions. If we are doing an abdominal curl, we fully engage up and fully engage back, with no relaxing in between. I often see people let go of their abdominals as they bring their shoulders back to the floor, making it harder to re-engage and continue with the exercise effectively. 

This is one of the reasons why in most Pilates classes you won’t be doing 100 sets of anything, as you do in mainstream exercise class. It is just not necessary when you are applying all the Pilates principals correctly. 

In Pilates we talk about Co-contraction

In Pilates we talk about Co-contraction, the medical dictionary meaning for this is ‘ the simultaneous contraction of agonist and antagonist muscles around a joint to hold a position’ what the heck does that mean you might ask? For a start the agonist muscle is the prime mover and the antagonist is the stabilising muscle. An example of this would be the bicep and the tricep. The Bicep being the prime mover and the triceps being the stabiliser.

Where are we looking for a shortcut?

We can also look at this cheating concept in how we run our lives. Where are we looking for a shortcut in our learning, health, relationships etc. ? Now don’t get me wrong , I love a good shortcut where appropriate, especially when it comes to travel research, a cooking tip or a shortcut on my Mac, but not at the expense of my personal growth, development or overall wellbeing. There are just some things we have to do correctly in order to get the benefits, Pilates is one of them. 

I cant see the point in dieting at the expense of good healthy eating!

An example of cheating in life could be dieting. I cant see the point in dieting at the expense of good healthy eating. Some diets are made up of packed processed foods that barely look alive and hold no nutritional content whatsoever. Wouldn’t it be better to take the time not the shortcuts, to re-educate yourself on the art of healthy foods and lifestyle ?

I hear you can get your self all sorts of degrees at the push of a button

Another example is education, now there’s a shortcut, I hear you can get your self all sorts of degrees at the push of a button online theses days. There is just no point in taking this shortcut or cheating here, who are you cheating anyway? I would much rather apply myself to reaching my maximum potential in whatever the task is at hand, than ripping myself off by cheating or looking for the easy way out, wouldn’t you ? 

Contact me anytime, I would love to hear your comments.

Wishing you a strong body & mind

Sandra Kelly