BALANCE BORN OUT OF HARDSHIP THE ORIGIN OF THE PILATES SYSTEM
When most people think of Pilates, they think of the exercise trend that was the butt of a hundred ’90s sitcom jokes. In reality, this system of stretches and workouts is a great option for people of all ages looking to stay active, tone their muscles, and improve their balance, all with minimal space and equipment requirements. One need only look at the history of Pilates to understand how this century-old discipline has helped shape exercise science today. UNLIKELY BEGINNINGS The man for whom the Pilates system is named, Joseph Pilates, was no stranger to health challenges. Born in Germany in the late 19th century, Joseph suffered from both asthma and rickets, making any form of physical activity difficult. But rather than shy away from exercise, he enthusiastically followed his father into gymnastics, later picking up bodybuilding and martial arts. Instead of being held back by his body, Joseph made it his life’s mission to help himself and others live healthy lives. Eventually, he would begin developing his own fitness theories. LIGHT IN A DARK TIME Joseph became a known quantity in the fitness world, going as far as training Scotland Yard
officers in self-defense after moving to England in 1912. Then the First World War broke out. Despite having worked closely with English law enforcement, Joseph’s nationality was enough to land him in an internment camp alongside fellow German citizens. As the world was consumed by the bloodiest conflict it had ever seen, the young fitness instructor did what he did best: He helped those around him get stronger and healthier. KNOWLEDGE THROUGH ADVERSITY In this internment camp, the system that would eventually become Pilates was developed. Because of the constraints of captivity, Joseph had to devise exercises that didn’t rely heavily on equipment and could be performed in tight, confined spaces. To this day, Pilates remains one of the most flexible, scalable fitness methods around. The techniques first developed by Joseph Pilates are still practiced today, helping thousands of people develop their core postural muscles, gain better fitness, and improve their balance. As a result of his forward-looking techniques and steadfast spirit of personal development, Joseph Pilates remains an inspiring figure in the world of physical fitness.
SHOVELING, SCRAPING, AND SHIVERING 3 WAYS THE WINTER WEATHER HELPS YOU BURN CALORIES
3. SHIVERING Your body works hard to maintain a healthy temperature, and when that freezing wind rolls in, you’ll likely notice your body start to shiver. Shivering is a physiological response that produces heat through small, rapid muscle movements. It also assists with weight loss; you can burn up to 100 calories in 15 minutes of shivering. Of course, you should never purposefully make yourself chilly just to shed a few pounds, but if you have to be outside for a prolonged period of time this winter, know that your body is helping you out in more ways than one.
Winter can make it hard to stay physically fit. Between the aversion to stepping outside onto your ice-covered porch and the urge to drink that third cup of hot chocolate, these winter months can lead to unwanted weight gain. Nowadays, people will try almost anything to get rid of those extra pounds — yoga with goats, hula hoop fitness routines, and even underwater spinning classes. Believe it or not, you’re already working harder than you think this time of year. Here are three ways the winter weather helps you burn calories. 1. SHOVELING
2. SCRAPING In addition to shoveling snow, you can also get a workout by scraping those layers of ice off your windshield. In fact, you can burn up to 56 calories during a 15-minute scrape session. What’s more, you can’t slack off and skip this activity; it’s a necessary part of your morning routine.
Love it or hate it, if you live in an area with a lot of snowfall, shoveling is a necessary chore every time it snows. While the repetition associated with this task bothers a lot of people, according to a Harvard study, you actually burn approximately 230 calories for every 30 minutes you shovel.
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