“Pilates is gaining the mastery of your mind over the complete control over your body.” – Joseph Pilates
Mindfulness is all the rage these days, with companies investing in meditation gurus for their corporate offices, hosting mindfulness retreats, and using it to tackle childhood obesity and performance in the classroom. And for good reason: the CDC recently released a report that implicated 90% of all illness to stress. But what is mindfulness, and is it just another thing we have to add to our already packed day in order to see its benefits?
Though whole books have been dedicated to the subject, mindfulness is really about noticing and staying in the present moment while calmly acknowledging and accepting your thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations.
The benefits of mindfulness, when practiced regularly, are reduced harmful self-talk, lower stress levels, improved overall health, less anxiety and depression, and reduced pain. The great news is that if you’re already attending Pilates at Mindful Movement, you’re getting a double dose of its health benefits. Because unlike traditional exercise that focuses solely on the body, Pilates taught at Mindful Movement fully integrates the mind, body, and spirit into its sessions. Pilates is mindfulness. Its movements are intricate and controlled, and our Pilates instructors gently guide you through attaining the right posture, queuing you when to tense some muscles while relaxing others, and incorporating your breathing. Because of the many different components working together at once, your mind has no choice but to live in the present, focused on your body and the soft, encouraging guidance of your instructor.
Mindfulness is a choice you can make at any time, a decision to improve YOUR health, to value YOUR time, and to focus on YOUR priorities. Today is the day you can commit to reducing your stress levels, strengthening your body, and reducing your pain by becoming a client at Mindful Movement Pilates Studio. Use our Online Scheduler to Book your Pilates sessions or contact the studio to book in person. If you don’t see a time that works for you, let us know and we will do our best to accommodate your request!
- Find a relaxed, comfortable position. You could be seated on a chair or on the floor on a cushion. Keep your back upright, but not too tight. Hands resting wherever they’re comfortable. Tongue on the roof of your mouth or wherever it’s comfortable.
- Notice and relax your body. Try to notice the shape of your body, its weight. Let yourself relax and become curious about your body seated here—the sensations it experiences, the touch, the connection with the floor or the chair. Relax any areas of tightness or tension. Just breathe.
- Tune into your breath. Feel the natural flow of breath—in, out. You don’t need to do anything to your breath. Not long, not short, just natural. Notice where you feel your breath in your body. It might be in your abdomen. It may be in your chest or throat or in your nostrils. See if you can feel the sensations of breath, one breath at a time. When one breath ends, the next breath begins.
- Be kind to your wandering mind. Now as you do this, you might notice that your mind may start to wander. You may start thinking about other things. If this happens, it is not a problem. It’s very natural. Just notice that your mind has wandered. You can say “thinking” or “wandering” in your head softly. And then gently redirect your attention right back to the breathing.
- Stay here for five to seven minutes. Notice your breath, in silence. From time to time, you’ll get lost in thought, then return to your breath.
- Check in before you check out. After a few minutes, once again notice your body, your whole body, seated here. Let yourself relax even more deeply and then offer yourself some appreciation for doing this practice today.
What mindfulness practices have you tried in your daily life? Share your favorites in the Comments below!
With complete love and alignment,
Be a part of the Mindful Movement Pilates revolution- share this post with your friends by clicking “Share” below.
Mindful Movement Pilates Studio
3720 Rawlins Street Suite L
Dallas, Texas 75219