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What Is Pilates Mat?

Learn about Pilates Mat from Core Pilates NYC instructor Sarah Ruback in this Howcast workout video.


So, what is Pilates Mat? Well, Pilates Mat is really where Pilates began. Joseph Pilates started his routine on the mat and then what grew out of that was the apparatus that he invented in order to strengthen a person's musculature in order to achieve and perform the exercises properly using core strength rather than just flailing their body about in haphazard, nonsensical ways. He developed a system that started lying down on the back, on the mat supine, completely supported by gravity. Because it's the easiest thing for your body. He was really an innovator with the mat at the time, and still is today because he's all about efficiency in the work out rather than doing 50,000 reps of everything and burning your body. He starts you where you need to begin to find where you are at with your musculature. Then progresses you from lying down, through seated, then to standing. So, you can take all that work out into the world with you. So, that's really the Pilates Mat. It's the heart of Pilates. It's both the entry point of Pilates because that's where it began, but it's also the goal. After you've learned all this apparatus work, then hopefully you take what you felt through the springs and the straps and you bring it to your mat work. And it's more accessible to people, both financially and just with time. You could get Pilates Mat videos and do it at home. You can do it on vacation. You can do it when you're traveling. It's not hard to, you can even put a towel down on the floor and use that as your mat if you're away and you don't have one with you. Cost-wise, the classes have more people in it, so it's a great way to try Pilates to see if you like it and to see if you want to commit to possibly working on the apparatus. Pilates Mat class is a really great place to start because that's where Joe started.

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