The other day we met up again with our August guest blogger, James Shaw - Pilates Teacher at Bloc Pilates. This time we chose an outdoor space, the Netil 360 Roof top bar. Luckily after all that crazy rain in London we had a super lovely and sunny hour on their roof top. We have worked with James before on some Reformer Pilates poses which we have talked about here. In this post you'll find lots of informations about MAT PILATES

Mat Pilates

Mat Pilates is a series of exercises which can be modified and adapted so that everyone can participate. The Pilates Method was designed specifically to be performed on a mat. Joseph Pilates originally called the method Contrology, he developed mat exercises that were quite similar to the work done on Pilates large equipment like the Reformer, Cadillac. The exercises within the method were designed to challenge your muscles and joints in a verity of ways. Using the pilates principles of Control, Flow, Precision, Concentration, Breath, Centering to connect the mind to the muscle to explore the body's movement capabilities achieve a more balanced body. 

Pilates matwork can be done anywhere and with just a mat. Thus making it easy to teach in a group environment, making it more affordable way to start your pilates journey.

Get Your Core Connection 


In pilates we aim to balance the whole body, but pay special attention to our "Powerhouse" or core. The powerhouse is made up of lower abdominals, lower back, pelvic floor and glutes. You'll hear lots about you're core connection. Below is a overview about the 3 main connections used in your pilates class. These can be tough to master if your in a group environment you can be like what's your transverse connection. Take a read!

Transverse Abdominal 

Our transverse Abdominal is our innermost abdominal muscle. It connects to our spine and wraps around to the front of your body. It also attaches to our lower 6 ribs and to the top of your entire pelvis. Our Transverse Abdominal stabilises your spine and pelvis, and lifts and supports your internal organs. To engage imagine there's a string at the back of the belly button and you're drawing your navel back towards your spine. You'll maintain a light connection throughout your pilates workout.

Pelvic Floor

The pelvic floor is made up of muscles and connective tissue that sits under the bones of the pelvis like a hammock. If you bring your index fingers together and your thumbs together to make a triangle, this is about the size of your pelvic floor muscles. These muscles connect to the pubic bone. We hold a light connection with our pelvic floor throughout our pilates class. Your connection should feel like a lift in pubic bone area. 

Lateral Breathing

In lateral breathing, air is directed into the sides and back of the ribcage. The ribs expand outward and upward. In pure lateral breathing, the belly moves only very minimally. In combined lateral-belly breathing, the ribcage expands and the belly gently extends outward a little. Using this technique helps to maintain the above two core connections and also help puts oxygen deeper in the lower lobes of the lungs. 




Fancy a Private Reformer Pilates Session with James. 

1 SESSION: £85

5 SESSIONS: £375

10 SESSIONS: £650