19 Mar Footwork – about more than just your feet!
Whether you’re in a matwork class or on the Reformer, Cadillac or Chair you’ll find that many of your Pilates classes start with some form of footwork. Have you ever wondered why or what this seemingly simple movement is all about? Well let us fill you in…
We’re going to focus here on the Reformer footwork series; often the first set of exercises you’ll be introduced to on the equipment and will stay with you as key part of your Pilates sessions even when you’re a seasoned pro.
Put simply footwork involves you lying on the reformer carriage with your feet on the footbar; working in a number of different foot positions you’ll glide the sprung carriage in and out. While it’s called footwork, this series of exercises is about more than that, it’s a whole body exercise, looking to lengthen your legs, spine and body as a whole while remaining stable through your pelvis.
Footwork can help you gain a new understanding of your body, it can highlight alignment or strength issues in your legs, giving you an insight perhaps into whether one leg moves differently to the other, or how stable your pelvis is as you move. When you’ve learnt more about your body, you can use footwork to improve your foot, ankle, knee, leg and hip alignment. It will also develop strength and flexibility in these areas. What’s more, because you are lying on your back, working without the impact of gravity and can vary the levels of spring resistance on the reformer to alter the challenge posed, footwork really is a perfect exercise for both prevention and rehabilitation of injuries to the lower limbs.