When the weather is hot and humid, the last thing that you feel like doing is exercising, but keeping up your fitness is one of the best things you can do for yourself to stay healthy and injury free this summer. Stay cool, take your exercise indoors and try Pilates.
Karen’s Summer Class Schedule
Pilates uses controlled movements, focusing on your core muscles to build body strength, flexibility and endurance. It’s a total body conditioning routine to help you strengthen, lengthen and tone muscles without high impact movements.
Cardiogolf Creator, LPGA Teaching Professional, Golf-Fitness Specialist and Certified Pilates Instructor Karen Palacios-Jansen teams up with15 to Fit Pilates, Barre and Fitness to help you take your fitness level or golf game to the next level.
Karen leads various Pilates classes to help you strengthen, lengthen and tone your muscles. Classes combine Pilates Reformers, Pilates Springboards and Cross Core Trainers for a total body workout.
Karen will also design an individualized fitness and or golf-specific workouts for you combining Pilates reformer exercises with her unique Cardiogolf fitness program to help you improve your core strength, posture, balance, flexibility and swing technique to build more a powerful and repeatable golf swing.
Because the golf swing requires repeating the same movement, some muscles become overused, others may weaken causing imbalances. Pilates is a full body exercise system that works all muscles, it’s low impact, helps increase strength and stability and improves flexibility.
In the golf swing, you want your core to be stable as your arms and legs move independently; similar to the Hundred exercise in Pilates.
The Hundred exercise is the first of the classical Pilates exercises that helps warm the body and strengthen core muscles. It is a breathing exercise that focuses awareness on your core stability while working active flexibility in your arms and legs.
Lie on your back with your legs in tabletop position. Your spine should lay supported along the ground as you lengthen your neck.
Extend your arms by your sides with your palms facing downwards.
Inhale to prepare and then exhale curl your head and shoulders up and raise your arms and hands a few inches off the ground.
Begin pumping your arms up and down smoothly but vigorously as you inhale for 5 counts, then exhale for 5 counts.
Repeat this breathing pattern for 10 repetitions, totally 100 counts.
Keep your torso stable and legs stable. Avoid popping your abdominals muscles outward.
Watch Patrea demonstrate the ‘side sit up’ series on a reformer that will help you improve your golf swing.
In the golf swing, you need to be able to do a combination of side flexion (frontal plane movement or side to side motion) and rotation (transverse plane or rotational movement) in your core to wind up behind the ball and create power.
What is great about Pilates is that the exercises take your body through all planes of motion:
The sagital plane
The frontal plane
The transverse (horizontal) plane
I consulted with Pilates expert and 15 to Fit Pilates, Barre and Fitness owner in Mooresville, North Carolina, Patrea Aeschliman on what are the best Pilates exercises to work in different planes of motion just like you do in the golf swing.
The Roll-Down is a classical Pilates exercise that can strengthen the abdominals and stretch the lower back. It is a basic Pilates exercise, but that doesn’t mean it is easy according to Patrea Aeschliman, owner of 15 to Fit Pilates, Barre and Fitness in Mooresville, North Carolina. However, she says, for many this is a very challenging exercise that needs to be practiced.
This exercise is particularly good for golfers who need spinal mobility and abdominal strength to create power in the golf swing.
Watch Patrea demonstrate the Roll-Down with modifications.
Sit on the floor in a ‘v’ position with your knees bent and your feet flat
Place your hands behind your knees
Inhale as you sit tall, keeping your knees and ankles together
Tuck your tailbone and roll back about 4 inches
Reach your arms straight out in front of you, then hold position for one inhale
Exhale, then pull your abs in and then articulate your spine back up to the start position
Repeat 8 to 10 times
I teach Golf and Pilates. I am a LPGA Master Professional and Certified Personal and Pilates Trainer