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Effects of Pilates on Abdominal Muscles


Pilates is a form of exercise that focuses on posture, balance, strength, and flexibility. Individuals with some health condition or those with lower fitness levels can benefit from pilates since it doesn’t belong to the group of vigorous or strenuous activities. Although we all know what pilates is, there are still some misconceptions about it. For example, most people firmly believe it has no effect on the abdominal area because it’s not vigorous enough. The reality is different; pilates has beneficial effects on abdominal muscles and this article is going to discuss them.


Although pilates isn’t usually perceived as the type of activity that can make you stronger, the reality is that it has a beneficial impact in this department. Pilates is amazing for strengthening and toning your core as well as for helping you improve flexibility. After all, the primary target of this workout is your core and the abdominal region. How does pilates strengthen your abdominal muscles? It’s simple; when doing these exercises, instead of weights, you use your body weight, thus making muscles work harder. A study published in the Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies confirmed that pilates exercises have a beneficial impact on abdominal and lower back muscular strength.


Pilates isn’t the type of workout which will exhaust you to the point you can’t move anymore. It focuses on stretching in a bid to improve strength and flexibility, increasing your range of motion and stabilising the muscles not only in the abdominal area, but in the lower back, thighs, and so on. Thanks to these effects, pilates allows you to improve abdominal endurance as well as overall physical performance. The improvement of flexibility allows you to properly execute exercises without injuries and you’re able to exercise for a longer period of time without getting too tired. That’s why pilates is a perfect match with other types of exercises such as strength or cardio training. In fact, the ability of pilates to increase abdominal endurance has been confirmed in a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research.

Proper posture

One of the primary purposes of abdominal muscles is to hold your body upright. Poor posture puts these muscles to “sleep”, leaving you with more weight that is difficult to get rid of. You already know that weight around the abdominal area can be quite stubborn. Correcting your posture can make you seem 5 pounds slimmer instantly. This is where pilates steps in; these exercises strengthen your back and abdominal muscles thus making you look slimmer and taller. Plus, proper posture is necessary for spine health, breathing, and proper execution of exercises you do every day.

Builds the muscle

What makes pilates incredibly beneficial is the fact it targets multiple muscles in your body, not just one particular group. Pilates helps to build different kinds of muscles than lifting weights as it has the ability to develop lean muscles for stronger inner and outer frame. This workout has a better impact on your muscles than yoga. Unlike yoga which doesn’t involve too much movement, pilates makes you move more thus activating different abdominals as well as muscles in other parts of the body. One study showed that regular pilates exercise is effective for increasing abdominal deep muscle thickness.

Aesthetically appealing

Of course, when we are discussing benefits of pilates for your abdominal muscles, we can’t ignore the aesthetic factor. Thanks to a stronger core, toned abdominal muscles, greater endurance, and more strength, you’ll be able to have a taut stomach that you’ve always dreamed of. As mentioned above, pilates is a perfect match with other types of exercise, thus helping you to lose extra weight and stubborn belly fat faster. Besides toned stomach, pilates will also help you tone your thighs and give you sexy legs.

Other benefits of pilates

Benefits of pilates go beyond activating, toning, and strengthening your abdominal muscles. This training also:

  • Improves bone density
  • Promotes weight loss
  • Relieves back pain
  • Prevents injuries
  • Works your entire body
  • Boosts energy levels
  • Improves focus and concentration

Pilates is the type of whole-body activity that targets different muscle groups including your abdominals. With regular practice, pilates can improve endurance, strength, and thickness of abdominal muscles without bulking them up. It helps you tone your stomach to look and feel great. Due to its positive impact on flexibility, pilates works wonders with other forms of physical activity and prevents the risk of injuries. Despite the popular belief, pilates is equally beneficial (and suitable) for both men and women. So, sign up to the nearest pilates class today.


Please Note: Before following exercise routines or changing your fitness regime, please consult a certified fitness professional. Always talk with a medical practitioner before following dietary advice or taking supplements.

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