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Pilates can be very intimidating and overwhelming the first time you try it. Here's a few tips to help make your first Pilates experience a good one:
1) Before you do a video or go to class, be sure to inquire whether the class is suitable for beginners. There's nothing worse than walking into an advance/intermediate class as a beginner. Trust me this will result in you leaving very frustrated and probably put off Pilates for life!
2) If you're going to your first Pilates class be sure to let the teacher know you're brand new, this way they'll keep a special eye on you and do variations of exercises to incorporate you.
3) Pilates is a great way to rehab after an injury, but be sure to tell the Pilates instructor about it - no matter how small of an injury it is, so they can modify exercises for you! If you're going to do an at-home video, be sure your doctor gave you the green light.
4) Pilates is an intelligent form of exercise and requires quite a bit of mind-body connection - be sure to tune into your body and to the instructor's voice so you can follow and do as much as possible. Yes, this is tricky, but just think how great it is to go and spend 10 min to an hour completely focused on your body and mind with no time to think about the stresses of your day.
5) Be realistic: The first time you rode your bike you were not all that steady - it will be the same with Pilates. The first time you try some of the moves, you'll feel totally silly and awkward. You might even get frustrated because you can't do the roll-up or the teaser for example. When you find yourself getting frustrated, remember that it will take some time for your mind and body to get used to the new moves and "language" of Pilates. Try and do what you can, the best you can, and just be patient.
"Patience and Persistence are vital qualities in the ultimate successful accomplishment of any worthwhile endeavor." ~Joseph Pilates, Return to Life Through Contrology
Enjoy the journey, work hard, have fun and you'll soon reap the benefits!
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