Hot on the heels (pun intended!) of my invite from Legal & General to attend their Keepfit Bootcamp was another from simplyhealth for a Hot Pilates class they were holding to promote the relaunch of their back care app. I first tried pilates a couple of years ago when I was on holiday at Center Parcs and loved it so I was really intrigued at the thought of doing it in 35 degree heat and signed up immediately.
It was the hottest day of the year so far in London and I was already a bit sweaty from the 19 degree weather when I arrived incredibly early (as I usually am) at the Yotopia Studios in Covent Garden where the class was taking place. It wasn’t long though before some of the other bloggers started to turn up and we all chatted away about whether we’d tried anything like this before and our expectations for the class etc before being led up to the hot studio for us to begin.
When you step into the room the heat really hits you and reminded me of stepping off of the plane on my visit to Atlanta last year. (Oh how I’m in desperate need of another holiday some time soon!) Our instructor, the wonderful Amy who is a qualified osteopath as well as a yoga/pilates instructor, explained the benefits of pilates and how the movements she was going to be showing us were beneficial for our back health. Interestingly most of the moves were performed in a standing position rather than on the floor which was a bit different from the pilates I’ve tried before but as Amy quite rightly pointed out we don’t spend the majority of our days on floors flat on our back!
Now being Scottish I don’t really cope with the heat all that well and while it started out lovely and warm I was soon uncomfortably sticky instead. I’m also, as I’ve mentioned before, not very fit but Amy made sure that there were different progressions for those of us that were less flexible than the others which helped. The main thing I struggled with (and this has always been the case with this type of exercises) I struggled with the breathing. I have never been able to get the rhythm of my breathing right, I think this is why I have always struggled with running as well. That said it was an incredibly enjoyable hour. I felt really nicely stretched out afterwards (also secretly pleased that for once everyone else was just as red-faced after the workout as I was – thank you heat!) and the next days my abs were kind enough to let me that they too had had a pretty good time.
My dad has had back problems for as long as I can remember and I know the hassles that it has caused him over the course of his life with it sometimes being so bad he couldn’t get up off of the floor. I’m quite lucky that I don’t have any back pain but prevention is always better than cure and pilates is great for that especially hot classes like this – you can read about more of the benefits of the added here on the simplyhealth website. Simplyhealth also very generously included a £30 gift voucher for Yotopia in the goodie bags that they gave us and I’m especially keen to give the hot boxing yoga a go so watch this space!