The heat is on and they're loving it (6 photos)Thursday, November 22, 2012 by: Connie Carello
Angela Sauve, an instructor of Pilates since 2004, urges those interested in a strengthening, intense workout to try Pilates with an added element, heat.
At Jade Wellness, attendees can find Sauve providing instruction in a Hot Pilates class on Saturdays running from November 24th to December 16th from 1:30 to 2:30pm at Jade Wellness.
The series of movements, around since the early 1920’s, serve to strengthen the body’s core muscles which include the muscles that surround and support the spine.
These muscles can be accessed through positions known as planking, push ups, squatting, all with an added form of balance, momentum, and of course breathing which serves to contract and releases muscles deep within the abdomen, arms, and legs.
“Pilates is a series of exercises to increase core strength,” Sauve said, “to support muscles in the spine. The principles include breathing deeply, proper shoulder placement, posture, and a mental focus on balance and contraction of certain muscles.”
Although the movements may be considered similar to those performed in Yoga, Pilates does not carry a spiritual aspect to it.
Considering Pilates is a healthy form of exercise due to its low impact nature, the regime has actually assisted many with back pain.
51 year old Sandra MacLennan proves that the movements may help with certain body ailments, “The heat really provides me with an intense workout without strain. At first I was nervous to try a class because I thought I would sweat too much, but that really wasn’t the case. I could feel my muscles being stretched out and it really is relaxing. It has helped my lower back pain, actually since attending class with Angela, I no longer feel the pain. I feel much stronger.”
Although attendees can lose hundreds of calories per class, Sauve focuses on the other more important benefits hot Pilates can provide, “By engaging your muscles, it increase circulation to all organs and detoxifies the body through sweating. Another added benefit is that the class focuses on metabolism and working with the heat to nurture our muscles. Flexibility is another added benefit and the concentration and focus you have on the movements’ helps you let go of the chaos in your life, you don’t really have time to think about your grocery list.”
By exhaling outwards with every contraction of the abdomen muscles, it was impossible to focus on anything other than the tightening sensation at my core.
Lifting the muscles closer to the spine has also served to improve my posture over the last few days and the stiff muscle pain often felt after an intense workout at the gym is, in this case, minimal due to the deep stretches the class concluded with.
The temperature of the room usually reaches a nice tropical condition of approximately 92 to 94 degrees Fahrenheit with a humidity of 45 to 50.
Come winter the heated area will become a pleasurable escape as beginners or advanced Pilates lovers are encouraged to attend a drop-in class for $15 or pre-register for $13.
“Really it is a rewarding challenge for anyone who is up for taking a class,” Sauve said and, by trying a heated class for the first time myself, I couldn’t agree more.