Pilates for Swimming

Beginners Pilates & Swimmers

Many swimmers have never thought of doing Pilates as a complementary fitness programme to their swimming. Yet there are many aspects of Pilates for swimming that makes it the perfect exercise. If you swim why not think about how beginners Pilates at Pilates Central might help you? Below we set out why and how it helps.

Pilates Teaches Breath Control, Mindfulness and Body Balance

Pilates exercises are performed at a deliberate pace, while employing appropriate breathing patterns and attention to detail. This approach translates well to the pool. Many swimmers need to ‘slow down’ and to forget how many lengths they intended to swim. Instead Pilates teaches Swimmers to focus on breathing, body orientation and balance. This makes swimming a more enjoyable and relaxing experience.

Pilates Address Posture Problems Arising From Poor Swimming Technique

It is particularly important to release the neck in order to lengthen the spine. This eliminates the muscular tension that affects the whole body when the head is pulled back. The head position adopted by most poor swimmers would be impossible to hold for long periods out of the water. This is a position particularly found when performing the breast-stroke. The challenge, therefore, is to ‘remember to remember’ the superior postural alignment and sense of lightness gained through Pilates and apply it in the pool.

Pilates Re-Focuses Swimmers Helping Them to Improve Technique

Swimming, meanwhile, has the image of being a sport for which the prime requirements are strength and determination. Success is measured in terms of ‘how far’ and ‘how fast’. The skill of learning to swim well is overlooked, with little attention paid to grace, elegance and economy of movement. As a result, it is rare to find recreational or fitness swimmers demonstrating effortless, efficient strokes that cause barely a ripple on the surface. Instead, too many of them view swimming as a battle against a relentless opponent – the water. Hence the number of head-out-of-the-water thrashers, expending energy but getting nowhere, both literally and metaphorically.

Due to the above, for many swimmers swimming is actually not that relaxing. Pilates teaches its students to focus on the core, the breath, and to be in the moment acutely aware of their posture and movement of their bodies. Many Pilates students find this to be transformative. When applied to swimming, it results in an improved technique, which funnily enough often results in faster swimming. Not only that, but Pilates positively impacts overall fitness, which in turn helps with stamina and the ability to swim more lengths of the pool.

Swimmers who also do Pilates find it easier to focus on breathing, grace, flow and maintaining a steady pace. So if you are a swimmer and would like to find out about attending beginners Pilates classes at Pilates Central, why not give us a call via the details on our contact page?

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