Pilates Workout: A Reno Dads Experience

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before… fit guy walks into a different workout class and finds out just how challenging it is. Guy walks out with a new appreciation for just how hard it is to work out in a new way.  This is my version…

A few weeks ago, Club Pilates offered a class to the Reno Dads team, and I thought, “Sure, why not?” I figured I had been going to group fitness classes and swimming for the past few months, I had run the Reno Tahoe Odyssey, so I should be able to handle a class without too much trouble. I coordinated a class with Jessica at Club Pilates, and dropped it into my calendar.

What is Pilates?

If you’re curious, Pilates has a pretty interesting history which I didn’t know much about before the class. It was created in the 1920s by Joseph Pilates as a way for soldiers who were bedridden to start their rehabilitation. The story is a big part of the appeal of the workout – there are other types of Pilates like floor exercises and that sort of thing, but the main branch of this type of exercise is based on movements that are guided by a machine/apparatus called a reformer that allows you the ability to work smaller muscles and specific groups of muscles in a very particular way. The goal is to develop core muscles by using your arms and legs with different straps and a pulley system. The founder of Club Pilates, Jessica, gave me a quick history lesson after my class!

What was it like?

I’d heard a bit about the method, but had never actually been on one of the machines. My instructor, Chandra, was really helpful in describing the movements and explaining the purpose of each exercise as we went through the workout. I generally prefer group workouts – I know this about myself after years of trying a lot of different workout options. I’m fairly extroverted and I tend to get a lot of energy from being around other people. Although I will say that trying something new in a class full of more experienced people is definitely a bit intimidating. I had no idea what I was getting into.

Chandra was excellent – explaining every move in detail, while encouraging the class to work hard, and coming over to my station on a few occasions to correct my form. It reminded me a lot of the first few times I went to yoga in that it takes a bit of repetition to hear an instruction and then to be able to execute the motion with your body.

I definitely enjoyed the class and felt like it would be a good addition to a fitness routine that includes cardio and strength training. Pilates helps balance out and develops the core muscles I’ve probably overlooked a bit. I’d definitely recommend it as a way to get some core strength and flexibility training if you’re looking for a new option for your fitness routine.

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