ICYMI, Pilates Interval Training (PIT) is the next biggest trend that will tone your entire body. Here’s what you need to know about it, plus the perfect at-home workout to add to your weekly exercise routine.
Pilates is well known for its ability to tone in a way that no other form of exercise can.
Well, each Pilates exercise actively lengthens the muscles, which in turn creates a leaner and more defined body. Plus, if youâ€™ve ever tried a Pilates class, you will know that Pilates teaches deep abdominal engagement, which can result in a more toned stomach â€“ bonus.
As word spread about the toning power of Pilates, so too did the variations and adaptations of this popular exercise regime. You may be familiar with Barre which is based on Pilates principles, HIIT x Pilates fusion classes, Pilates Zen or even perhaps the craziest variation: Prosecco Pilates.
Today, we are introducing you to the next biggest thing in Pilates – Pilates Interval Training (PIT). Born in Brisbane by Premium Pilates & Fitness, PIT combines the controlled movement patterns of mat Pilates with set intervals, resulting in a full body workout that targets each muscle in a different way. So, if top-to-toe toning is your objective, PIT is your new best friend.
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How did PIT come about?
Pilates Interval Training or â€śPITâ€ť was created during the infamous lockdown of 2020 as a way of simplifying some of our workouts for online classes.
Instead of trying to figure out another program to get our clients through isolation, I decided to adapt the format of existing classes so that people could get the most out of their workout.
With a simple tweak, our clients loved it, and PIT is now a staple at our Camp Hill and Coorparoo studios in Brisbane, as well as in our online classes.
How does it differ from a traditional Mat Pilates class?
Traditional Mat Pilates tends to flow from beginning to end with few repetitions of each exercise. With PIT, on the other hand, focus is narrowed down to anywhere between five and nine exercises and lasts anywhere from 30-seconds to one minute. This makes PIT faster paced than a regular Mat class and more isolating on muscle groups than a Reformer Pilates class.
In a PIT class you spend more time actually on the mat, working out, compared to a regular Pilates class where you would typically spend a sizable chunk of class time listening to the instructor explain the next exercise.
Whereas regular Pilates focuses on flowing and transitioning between exercises where time can be lost between positions, in a PIT class, you get in and get it done. This is due to the interval periods being unique to PIT. Spending anywhere from 30-seconds to one minute on an exercise enables you to really focus on the techniques of the exercise.
Benefits of PIT
To summarise, a PIT class provides you with more time exercising and more focus on technique than a traditional mat Pilates and Reformer Pilates class, leading to better toning results.
While both regular Pilates and PIT are whole body workouts, PIT does a better job of targeting isolated muscle groups with each individual exercise.
During a PIT class, due to the smaller number of exercises, you can really hone in on a particular weak spot you want to improve, or muscle group you want to tone.
In my PIT classes, I love to encourage my clients to build up and challenge themselves as they go, meaning that the exercises become harder during the session.
The foundations of Pilates were built on focus and the mind-body connection. PIT amplifies this, taking the mindfulness you experience in a class to new heights. This extra time spent on each exercise will engage deeper levels of focus.
Youâ€™ll be amazed how your worries will slip out of your mind when you have to focus on movement, breathing and engaging your core.
Push yourself out of your comfort zone
As a PIT class involves repeating five to nine exercises for several rounds, there is so much scope to push yourself out of your comfort zone.
Round one will start with the basics, however, the following rounds will provide you with the option of more challenging variations of the exercises. In order to achieve better toning results, the body needs to be challenged in different ways.
Your muscles get used to performing the same exercises and exercise routine very quickly, which results in a plateau. PIT is the shake up exercise routine your body needs to push your muscles and achieve more desirable strength and toning results.
A full-body toning PIT workout to do at-home
Try this workout, created by co-founder of Premium Pilates & Fitness Emily Berkelmans. You can do it in the comfort of your home and the best thing is you don’t need any fancy equipment.
Christopher Boult and Emily Berkelmans are co-founders of Premium Pilates & Fitness. Follow them on Instagram and on their blog for more Pilates tips and workouts.