Hiking in the Eastern Sierra's is one of my favorite escapes from city life. Taking a new trail expands the mind and challenges the body. It's the best thing for getting out of my bubble, scrubbing the brain, and refreshing my perspective. Up here, Mother Nature is in control.
Doing this hike reminds me of why I am so passionate about Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and Yamuna. The strength, balance, and stamina necessary to reach the summit comes from my work in these movement modalities. Would you like to get to the summit? Practicing Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and Yamuna will help. Here is why:
Breath technique is a central focus for Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and Yamuna. Strong breathing technique increases chest expansion which bio-mechanically supports your spine, neck, and pelvis, and improves oxygenation at high altitudes. Knowing how to use a variety of breathing techniques helps with challenging terrain from flat to steep or rocky to muddy. Breath control also facilitates a good pace and reduces breathlessness at 10,000+ feet elevation.
Foot and ankle mobility and strength are integral in Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and Yamuna. With healthy foot and ankle mobility, gait becomes a smooth efficient glide which takes pressure off of the knees, hips, and back. The foot work on the Pilates Reformer, the Yamuna Footwakers, and the GYROTONIC® Leg Extension Unit (LEU), all increase range of motion and strength in the ankle. As a result, the foot and ankle can power through steep inclines up and down the trail. The GYROTONIC® LEU work is particularly helpful with strengthening the foot/ankle connection with the kinetic chain all the way up the spine. The Yamuna Footwakers train each toe how to interact with uneven surfaces whether skidding on shale or rockhopping across a creek.
Core work is the generic term used to describe the holy grail of Pilates, abdominal strengthening. In Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and Yamuna, the goal of core work is to strengthen the overall ability to control and support the torso, head, and pelvis in multi-directional movement for balance, stability, comfort, and stamina. Students at Pilates On Robertson learn how to manage the many layers and slings of trunk muscles and fascia in coordination with the hips, legs, shoulders, ribcage, neck, and head. Then, the whole body can move as a rhythmic, well-timed unit while walking, climbing, reaching, and lifting.
Going high is both arduous and exhilarating. It is also the reward for living a lifestyle of mind/body awareness. Pilates, GYROTONIC®, and Yamuna can open doors of life experience, whether it be the great outdoors or travels afar. Take what you learn in the studio, outside. Breathe, Move, and Explore.