What is Pilates?
Pilates is a low-impact muscle strengthening and stretching exercise program developed by Joseph Pilates that focuses on deep core support (the "powerhouse") as the generator of all movement. Pilates aims to improve your posture and body mechanics to make the movements you make in everyday life safer and more efficient. Pilates is often described as the exercise that will help you lift your groceries without throwing your back out and the solution for common back pain caused by an American lifestyle. While not considered a weight-loss program, Pilates' focus on deep core muscles can change your body shape, particularly your abdomen, and support a cardiovascular program to keep your body balanced and pain-free.
What is your Pilates approach?
We practice a "West Coast" or modern style of Pilates that emphasizes breath, control, core support, and healthy body mechanics. We incorporate traditional and modern Pilates exercises into individualized programs that address our clients' unique needs, muscle imbalances, and conditions. Pilates practice is performed on a mat, Peak Pilates Reformer and Cadillac Tower, and Peak Pilates Chair. We also incorporate small free weights, Peak Pilates jump board, Pilates foam roller, BOSU instability ball, Yoga balls, resistance bands, Pilates circles, and, when appropriate, TRX Suspension systems to keep workouts challenging and interesting.
Who can benefit from Pilates?
Because Pilates promotes improved posture and correct body mechanics, everyone can benefit from Pilates practice. While we focus on clients recovering their fitness during or following illness, injury, or the prenatal or postpartum periods, clients of all fitness levels will benefit from addressing muscle imbalances and improving their deep core muscles. If you do have an acute or existing illness or injury (or are pregnant or recently postpartum), we recommend you get your physician's permission to begin a Pilates program and ask for any precautions, modifications, or recommendations.
What can I expect during a session?
While each session is unique, a 50-60 minute Pilates workout traditionally includes a brief (5-8 minute) warm-up and then a full-body, holistic workout that addresses both muscle strengthening and stretching. We use Pilates equipment that leverages spring tension to both challenge and assist with movements. Movements are generally slow and controlled and repetitions are limited. Exercises are rarely performed multiple times in a session and, with over 450 standard exercises in the curriculum alone, often not repeated across sessions. Inhale and exhale breaths are cued and music is kept off to focus on the practice at hand. We aim to keep body movements and transitions between exercises and equipment fluid and efficient, using the most of your time. We respect your time by concluding our sessions on-time. Be prepared to spend much of the session laying down, in quadruped (on your hands in knees), seated, or standing on a platform.
What do I bring and wear to a session?
We recommend clients wear tight-fitting clothing and are barefoot so we can make small corrections in alignment during practice. We also recommend bringing a small bottle of water, but no other equipment or preparation is required.
What is the baby-friendly, private studio like? Where is it located?
Located in Seattle's Phinney Ridge neighborhood, Empowered Pilates' studio features top-of-the-line tools, a private atmosphere, and easy on-street or private parking. It's located near 8th Ave NW and NW 70th Street in Seattle. The specific address is provided once an appointment is confirmed.
Do you offer other services?
We offer interval and Tabata training, TRX Suspension training, and general personal training, in addition to Pilates programs. We can also offer personalized training plans to complement a Pilates program.
Can I bring my baby? How does that work?
Please feel free to bring your little one to your session! We request 2 days of advance notice to make sure baby-related equipment is accessible and your session plan addresses the breaks a little one often needs. We are a family-friendly studio that understands crying happens and we aim to make you and your child as comfortable as possible. If you'd like to incorporate your baby into your Pilates session, please let us know and we'll create a safe, custom plan based on your body's needs and your child's developmental stage.
I'm not ready to venture out. Can you come to me at home?
Yes! While we can't bring our Reformer/Cadillac or Pilates Chair apparatus to your home, there's plenty of postpartum work we can do with minimal equipment at your house. Please contact us if you're interested in sessions where we come to you.