‘Is Pilates Old News?’ written by Michael Dermansky and published in Great Health Guide (September 2017). Five years ago everyone was doing pilates but what are the current trends for exercise and fitness? Has training turned 180 degrees and the principle of core stability not relevant anymore? In this article, physiotherapist Michael Dermansky discusses the importance of core stability and two training programs that combines both pilates and classical strength training called CrossFit and F45.
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Fitness: Is Pilates Old News?
written by Michael Dermansky
It seemed that everyone was doing Pilates five years ago, but now the big thing in classical strength training is programs such as CrossFit and F45. What are these new programs? Has training turned 180 degrees and are the principles of core stability not relevant anymore?
“CrossFit is a training program that builds strength and conditioning through extremely varied and challenging workouts. CrossFit contends that a person is as fit as they are proficient in each of ten general physical skills: cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, speed, agility, balance, coordination, and accuracy.”
“F45 is an interval-style workout that are strictly 45-minutes, and focus on functional – thus the ‘F’ – movements, reps only lasting about 45 seconds each, with a 15-second break before the next round of nerve-busting, vein-popping exercises begin. Recommended 3-5 sessions a week. F45ers also have options to sign up to eight-week challenges that come with eating plans and nutritional tips”.
The fad parts of the exercise programs have died down, but the principles of Pilates and core stability training remain important. However, as practitioners we have realised that these programs may not be enough to get the best outcome for clients in the long term.
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Core stability in general is still important. Core stability means being able to activate and control the stabilising muscles around the back and pelvis, such as the deep abdominal muscles (transversus abdominus) and the deep muscles in the lower back (multifidus). These muscles control the ability of one segment of the spine to move without putting excessive pressure on other structures such as the discs of the lumbar spine. This is very important, but is only the beginning of getting the most from your body.
The classic strength training exercises provide muscles strength and power. These exercises, such as deadlifts, weighted squats and chin-ups adds the next dimension to your training program. They begin to overload and strengthen the strength bearing muscles that sit on top of the stabilising muscles. When you do an activity, such as lifting a weight from the ground or lifting a bag of shopping or going rock climbing, you need the stabilisers to control the segments of the spine. However, you also need the strength bearing muscles to provide the strength and power to perform the task, without overloading the stabilising muscles and asking them to do more than they are designed to do.
These more modern programs are a hybrid of both Pilates (core training) and classical strength training (strength muscle training).
So, the answer is, to really get the most from what your body can achieve, check out CrossFit and F45.
Author of this article:
Michael Dermansky is a Senior Physiotherapist and Managing Director of MD Health Pilates. Michael has over seventeen years’ experience of treating clients from all walks of life, from six year- old children up to the age of 92. Michael can be contacted through his website.