Here’s why Pilates and well being go hand in hand.

Welcome to our first blog post.

The team at Pilates Lifestyle & Wellbeing are passionate in educating and inspiring you, on how Pilates - combined with a healthy lifestyle - can significantly transform how you live, by improving physical strength, flexibility, posture and mental awareness.

Knowledge = Power.

On Saturday the 1st of July, we hosted an information afternoon on Pilates and living a healthy lifestyle. Attendees could experience a beginner’s mat class and then watch a demonstration of an advanced class.

Followed by afternoon tea whilst listening to an engaging session with Beata Sinclair - from Smarter Nutrition, it was thoroughly enjoyed by all.

The topic for the day was based on a quote from Joseph Pilates:

“Ideally, our muscles should obey our will, reasonably, our will should not be dominated by the reflex actions of our muscles.”

To give you an understanding of what this means, let’s start by looking at a simple “roll up” exercise.

This movement can be from the Pilates repertoire or from any exercise programme. We also need to assume the participant has been trained and understands clear and concise instructions, of how to execute this exercise.

From a horizontal position - ideally - the head, neck, shoulder girdle and ribcage should flow up into a seated position, in one slow controlled movement. The result being - the spine remaining in a flexed position, with

arms extended at shoulder height and the eye line looking to the legs.

It all comes down to the participants “will”. Once the “will” is engaged, this ensures the flowing movement happens, and the muscles will follow the messages sent from the brain, resulting in the ideal movement.

However, should the “will” bypass the brain, and the participant relies merely on the reflex action of the muscle engagement - there is then a need to hitch from the back muscles, to draw into the forward position. This results in a jerky awkward movement, often assisted by a push from an elbow and the loss of the flexed position of the spine.

If this action is continually executed, it will eventually result in back pain or worse, back injury.

This is not the outcome you want.

Given the participant understands the instructions on how to perform the roll up, it is up to their “will” to be patient with their body. This allows the muscles to receive the messages from the brain, in the correct order. Once strength has been gained in the desired order, this allows the body to move with ease and grace.

This is the result you want to achieve.

Once you master the use of “will” to activate your mind in achieving your desired movement, you will experience a much more gratifying result, than relying on the reflex actions. This process does not only benefit your exercise routine, but can be applied to every aspect of our lives.

Beata talks Gut Issues.

The very knowledgeable and educated Beata focused the afternoons discussion around a healthy gut and why it is important to create and maintain the healthy bacteria, which is so vital to our wellbeing.

Are you aware that nearly 70% of your immune system resides in your gut? It is a major player in our overall health – so much so, it is often referred to as a “2nd brain”.

The necessity to provide our bodies with fermented foods to feed and maintain these wonderful little friends -

called healthy bacteria, provoked the question of where to find and which brand of yoghurt is best.

Nothing compares to making your own food.

The below recipe is for you to make at home. Yes, it starts off with a small amount of commercial natural plain yoghurt. But don’t panic. By retaining a small amount of yoghurt from your fist batch, it will be a starter for your next batch and so on.

Food made with love and attention really does taste better. So, make sure you double that quantity.

We hope you enjoy the experience of experimenting in your kitchen.

We can’t wait to share next week’s post where we talk about the benefits of attending Beginners Mat courses.

Until then… Dorothy

Natural Yoghurt Recipe

About This Recipe

Temperatures are the key and very important to obtain a thick creamy very yummy consistency.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 litres milk, preferably only pasteurized

  • 1 tablespoon of plain natural yoghurt

Directions

  1. Heat the milk to 85°c for 30 minutes or 95°c for 10 minutes.

  2. Cool milk to 45°c.

  3. Mix the plain natural yoghurt into the cooled milk.

  4. Place milk into a sterilized jar or sterilized thermos flask.

  5. Place the jar into a water bath at 35°c for 12 hours overnight or 45°c for 6 hours.

To maintain the constant temperature in the jar, use a Tupperware yoghurt maker container that maintains a constant temperature or a thermos instead of a jar. In cooler weather wrap the containers into a blanket.

Before eating, remember to reserve a small amount of yoghurt for your next batch.

Enjoy the making and the eating!

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