Pilates: Body in Motion is an exercise instructional manual. I'm training for a certain activity and was told that Pilates would be great to do because many people in the sport do it. I knew absolutely nothing about Pilates. I asked around at local fitness clubs but couldn't find any instructors. Lacking local instruction, I bought this book based on recommendations.
The many pictures and instructions for the actual exercises were very easy to follow. However, the information in the introduction (including an explanation of the 6 basic principles) left me so very frustrated and confused! The book says to flatten your lower spine against the mat ('neutral spine') by 'lengthening' your spine without moving your hips or other body parts...but that's physiologically impossible! And 'scooping' is described as feeling like a corset being tightened around your waist...which is only helpful if you've worn a corset before. Since the book implies that the exercises do little good if you don't have these principles right, the good, clear instructions on the actual exercises are probably useless to me because I don't clearly understand most of the basic principles.
I also doubt some of the claims of Pilates now that I've learned more about the system. I'm sure the system works fairly well at 'core' strength training for most people who use it, but some of the other claims seem a bit mystical in nature. If you love this method, that's great. If you understand the basic principles of Pilates, then this is probably a great book for you. But I'll stick with Straighter, Stronger, Leaner, Longer by Renee Daniels which is easy to understand and follow and works the 'core' muscles as well as the rest of your body.
Pilates is a method of exercising, shaping and toning the body that's very different from a common workout. Two years ago I started doing Pilates aided by a very good book called The Pilates Body by Brooke Siler. In the first few weeks I had already lost some weight, was noticing the outline of my muscles and had stopped feeling hungry all the time. I have since dropped two dress sizes and I still do the workout daily. After going through five other books I think that Pilates: Body … more
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The most authoritative, step-by-step guide to Pilates available on the market. Popular for decades with dancers, athletes, and celebrities, the Pilates Method is the perfect equipment-free workout for a stronger, leaner, fitter body. With great emphasis on precision and awareness, not only is Pilates great for the body, but for the mind as well. Using step-by-step mat-work exercises and a wide range of programs, from beginner to advanced, Pilate's Mind and Body is the only practical guide that shows you all of the proper steps to follow and how to avoid common mistakes in your conditioning.
About the Author Alycea Ungaro, P.T., is the owner of Real Pilates (tm), and the author of several best-selling Pilates titles including Portable Pilates (tm) and The Pilates Promise. Alycea has personally trained many celebrities including Madonna, Uma Thurman, and Christy Turlington with whom she has also collaborated on a Pilates Bootie for Puma(tm). Alycea presents seminars and workshops nationally and also serves on the advisory board of Fitness Magazine. Alycea is a featured personality on iamplify.com where you can download her signature workouts to your desktop or iPod.