The Best Pilates Mat

pilates mat

A great pilates mat will maximize the benefits of this exercise system.

Pilates is rooted in using controlled movement to strengthen the body and mind. Pilates has become very popular in this country as well as in the United Kingdom.  While there are many different types of machines you can use in this workout, the foundation of it is simply your body and a pilates mat.

Pilates is a fantastic exercise system that builds flexibility and strength, and develops control and endurance.  It was created by Joseph Pilates, who was born in Germany but moved to the United States in 1925.  Mr. Pilates suffered from very poor health as a child, so he dedicated his life to improving his physical fitness.  He developed the Pilates system in the early 20th century and it was intended to strengthen both the mind and the body, which he believed were interconnected.  Pilates is based on controlled movements and he called this system “contrology,” but of course we know it today by his last name.  At the core of the pilates system are six principles; concentration, control, center, flow, precision, and breathing.

If you’re looking to start a pilates workout routine you’ll need to get a pilates mat.  They are similar to yoga mats, and many people do use them interchangeably, but generally pilates mats are much thicker.  Pilates requires extra protection for your back and spine because you spend much more time lying on the floor.  Your pilates mat should be thick but firm, if it is too soft it won’t offer enough support.  You’ll also want to be sure that it is long and wide enough to accommodate your body and allow for a complete range of movement.  You don’t want to constantly interrupt your workout to readjust your mat.  A high quality exercise mat like Pogamat XL or Pogamat XXL is perfect for pilates.  It is thick, strong, durable, and larger than standard yoga mats.  Pogamat is also suitable for a variety of surfaces including carpet, concrete, hardwood, tile, sand, and grass.  With a Pogamat you’ll get the most out of your pilates workout, or any other exercise for that matter!

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