Joseph Pilates, the founder of the Pilates method of exercise referred to the muscles found in the lower back, lower abdomen, buttocks and pelvis as the ‘powerhouse’. Strengthening these ‘powerhouse’ muscles can not only avoid or reduce back pain and its associated problems but the exercises can help improve posture, which is vital for maintaining a healthy back.
When you begin to perform Pilates exercises, you will focus on how the different parts of your body are aligned. When misaligned, uneven stress is placed on the skeleton and especially the spine. Pilates exercises are performed whilst paying special attention to this alignment.
• Strengthen your back and abdominal muscles
• Lengthen and align your spine
• Improve your posture
• Expand your diaphragm
• Increase your overall flexibility, strength and balance
• Increase the range of movement in your hips and shoulders
• Enhance your concentration through focused breathing
• Help you run with a more upright stance
• Help you recover faster from injuries
Running is a repetitive activity so by its very nature this means that any weaknesses or imbalances in your body could potentially surface.
This is because certain muscles are overused while others are underused, which can result in a variety of ailments from lower back pain to hip and knee problems.
I have run many miles over the years, completed marathons, half-marathons and other races. There is no doubt in my mind that I am a stronger and more efficient runner through practising Pilates - the two disciplines complement each other beautifully. My book PILATES FOR RUNNERS is available from Amazon and all good book stores!
Pilates Fitness Challenge – (1hr) Sunday 21st November at 9 am. via ZOOM
Pilates exercises dynamically performed with some HiiT thrown in for good measure – expect to sweat!
"Pilates for Runners is written by Harri Angell an experienced Mat Pilates instructor, marathon runner, personal trainer, England Athletics Leader in Running Fitness and member of the Register of Exercise Professionals (follow Harri on twitter @Harriangell). The book is described as containing everything you need to start using Pilates to improve your running – get stronger, more flexible, avoid injury and improve your performance. Pretty much perfect for a weak, inflexible, tall, slouchy, injury-prone runner like me! I would highly recommend Pilates for Runners to runners of all ages and standards. I particularly enjoyed reading the motivating testimonials written by runners who incorporate Pilates into their training. I loved the inclusion of a series of inspirational quotes from the master himself, Joseph Pilates. If you are an injury-prone runner, I suspect that you will find the entire book both eye-opening and informative. I definitely did!" THE PHD RUNNER
"If you are a runner you need this book! Pilates for Runners contains easy-to-follow poses, clear concise instructions and interesting facts. I didn't know how important core strength is to prevent injury and develop stamina. Reading this has made me understand the reason for my persistent back-ache and I can already feel improvement from doing the exercises. Love this book and use it every day!" D. Ashman
5.0 out of 5 stars "Harri Angell sets the standard to which other sports and fitness authors should aspire. I have only had this publication for a week but already I know it is going to transform my running as well as my life! I usually struggle with exercise books because the explanations are too complicated - or not sufficiently detailed - and the reading experience is ultimately dry and uninspiring. Not so with this gem! The instructions are beautifully simple and precise, clearly set out on the page with easy-to-follow instructions, and photographs showing exactly the position to be adopted. The exercises are interwoven with interesting case studies, notes, quotations from Joseph Pilates - this all enriches the reading experience. How refreshing to read a book about Pilates which is written for women and for men! But what I appreciate most of all about this wonderful book is the detail given about performing particular Pilates exercises correctly and the explanation of how each exercise will assist running performance. It's packed full of information and good advice. I hope Harri Angell will write more books - she sets the standard for other sports/fitness authors to aspire to. Bravo!" Pesky
"This is a lovely Pilates book. It's really clear, the bits of context are very engaging, and it's all very nicely written. I have a couple of other Pilates books, but this is really a cut above the usual offering, much more individual and accessible (and it's not just for those who run, actually, anyone who takes Pilates mat classes or is thinking of it, or who wants to do some work at home will learn and find inspiration)." Dr. DJK
Ageing is a natural, gradual process that happens to us all. My book, Pilates for Living will show you how to build a foundation for your future life.
Whatever your age, Mat Pilates will improve your strength, coordination, mobility, flexibility, breathing, balance, concentration and general well-being. Your posture will improve as well. This will not only prevent aches and pains but also lift your spirits as you learn to stand up straighter, lengthen through the spine and embrace, head-on, those advancing years. To my mind, there is absolutely no point in dwelling on the negative aspect of the ageing process. We all know what happens to us both mentally and physically as we grow older, but we don’t necessarily know how to challenge those inevitable changes.
At the risk of stating the obvious, ageing happens to us all and there’s nothing we can do to stop it. But we can slow it down. And whether you’ve just hit your forties or are heading for seventy plus, you can make those years healthy, happy and fulfilling ones.
"I stumbled across Harri’s book in my osteopath’s waiting room and whilst it’s not something I’d normally pick up – I’m very glad I did. It’s interesting, informative, easy to read and inspirational. I’d always believed pilates was something for the older generations, but having read about the many health benefits I’m a convert – and I love it! Exercise for the body and the mind. It’s made a huge difference to my back and neck and my overall posture. And it’s actually really relaxing too. This book makes learning the positions easy – the instructions and the photos are really easy to follow. I’ve already ordered a few copies for friends and will be buying many more come Christmas." Mr. James A Futcher
"Writing with the over-50 crowd in mind, Pilates instructor Angell shares a useful guide to slowing down the aging process and preparing a foundation for a healthy future. Following a brief biography of founder Joseph Pilates (frail and sickly as a child, in adulthood he became a bodybuilder and athlete while developing his fitness program), Angell leads into the basics of a beginning Pilates routine, from breathing to balance. To illustrate poses, she employs photographs of fit men and women from the book’s target age group, beginning with warm-up poses, easy bending, and mobility exercises. Throughout the book are professional advice sidebars from an osteopath and a physician, as well as testimonials from Pilates students of varied ages, from 49 to 70, describing their positive results (“My back is stronger—I used to have lower back pain and I rarely do now”). The book’s straightforward approach and organization make starting on a Pilates routine seem entirely feasible, and the 20-minute routines, color-coded for beginners, intermediate, and advanced students, enhance that message. “Pilates has changed people’s lives for the better,” Angell says, and self-motivating readers may find this book to be their first, best step toward that change." PUBLISHERS’ WEEKLY, MAY 2018
Amazon viewer 5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Book On Pilates – EVER
"Pilates for Living by Harri Angell is the best book on this subject I have ever read. It is inspiring, helpful, and has made such a difference for my health and general well-being. She totally understands what it feels like to be a beginner. I even feel my shape changing now, and I am mentally more fit as a result. I could not recommend this book more highly and I look forward to eventually graduating to Harri Angell’s next book, Pilates for runners. I honestly never thought pilates could work for me, but thanks to this book it does!"