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For most of us, mileage and pace are our focus as we lace up and head out on the trails. We may even throw in some weights for strength training to help build muscle. But if you haven't yet incorporated Pilates into your routine, you may want to do so.
Pilates has a ton of benefits for runners. It emphasizes muscular endurance, flexibility, posture, coordination, balance and breathing — all essential for runners. Pilates has similarities with yoga but concentrates on training the body's core: abs, obliques, lower back, inner and outer thighs, glutes, etc.
The five principles of Pilates cater to a runner's needs: breath, alignment, rib cage position, neutral pelvis (huge for posture) and keeping shoulders down and back. Pilates works on muscle control rather than burn — strengthening and stretching at the same time — which is exactly what runners need. Proper breathing is also a huge part of Pilates, and the small changes that can be learned can have a huge positive effect on a runner during a race.
As runners, Pilates:
Back by demand, Moms on the Run is pleased to offer our 8-week Pilates Foundations for Runners course starting May 12. Join STOTT Pilates instructor Peggy Zoerhof for a live online class Wednesdays at 4:15pm CDT, or on demand at your convenience. For more information and to register with your local franchise or nationally, click here.