We know that the mention of a Pilates workout would make many men recoil in horror. After all, it’s for lightweight lady celebs and men who babble on about their ‘aura’, isn’t it?
That may be the stereotype, but adding some Pilates-style training to your workouts could see you getting fewer injuries and lifting more weight. In anticipation of some fierce scepticism, here are the usual excuses for giving it a miss, and why they just don’t cut it:
Doing Pilates won’t make me bigger and stronger
You could not be more wrong. Pilates will give you a cast-iron core and, according to this month’s guest trainer and co-founder of TenPilates David Higgins, ‘studies have shown that if you’re strong in your core, you can lift significantly more weight in big exercises.’
Doing weight-free workouts is too easy
Prepare to be humbled. ‘These are deceptively difficult moves,’ says Higgins. ‘You don’t need to use heavy weights to challenge your stability muscles. If you over-challenge them, your global (larger) muscles will try to take over, so you’ll do the movement incorrectly.’
You wouldn’t catch a real man doing Pilates
Tell that to England rugby union star Ugo Monye, who used the method to get over a crippling back injury. ‘A lot of athletes and rugby players are doing Pilates for prehab (preventative exercises, as opposed to rehab work after an injury),’ says Higgins. ‘If your body is functioning correctly then you’re stronger when an external force, such as a tackle, is exerted. You’ll be able to maintain balance better and less likely to get injured.’