彼拉提斯強調平衡身體、靈活度、呼吸、強化核心力量，以支持跑步動作。 正確的呼吸方式與了解身體力學，對完成正確的彼拉提斯動作來說，是很基本的要求 。同樣的，對跑者而言，呼吸方式與姿勢的正確與否，會影響跑步的效率性與姿態。
Margie Shapiro 是一位職業三鐵選手和美國認證的三鐵運動教練，也是美國維吉尼亞州Potomac River Running這家連鎖店的合夥人。 她說”姿勢是影響跑者步態的主要因素之一”， 她也認為"彼拉提斯運動幫你找出你身體較弱而且影響你的跑步姿勢的原因，讓你學到如何誘發你的橫膈膜、脊椎、肋骨與髖部的肌肉群，讓這些肌肉能協助你在整個跑步過程中，維持良好姿勢。”
對於受傷的跑者或運動員而言，練習彼拉提斯可以加速康復。許多物理治療師已經在使用彼拉提斯器械來協助他們的病患。 Shapiro 建議"跑步者應該練習彼拉提斯來提高全身的平衡感、靈活度與穩定度。這些對於跑步動作來說，都是必要的基礎。”
Shapiro 把跑者身體比喻成一部汽車來解釋跑者避免傷害的重要概念: "大部分的跑者受傷，不是因為引擎不好，而是因為底盤有問題，無法跟上心血管系統這個強力的引擎。" 和其他的運動一樣，我們需要時間與堅持訓練，才能體會到彼拉提斯運動的好處。但是只需要幾堂課，不論跑者或非跑者，彼拉提斯能讓你更清楚的覺察到自己身體的姿勢與呼吸模式。
本文作者: Elena Sonnino
The benefits of cross-training for runners have long been touted as a necessity to a well-balanced training regimen. Some runners turn to yoga; others to cycling and swimming. Another workout that offers runners multiple benefits is Pilates.
For both injured and non-injured runners, Pilates presents a functional workout routine that incorporates many components of physical therapy and strengthening and directly impacts running form and strength.
What is Pilates?
Pilates is the brainchild of German-born Joseph Pilates, who believed that mental and physical health are interrelated. Joseph Pilates developed the system of exercises in the 1920s, using various pieces of equipment based on 34 mat work movements.
Four keys elements of Pilates exercises:
• Body mechanics
What are the benefits of Pilates?
Pilates is more than a trendy workout regimen that makes you look beautiful. Carla Vercoe, owner of Studio BE Pilates in Fairfax, Va., stresses that Pilates emphasizes functional exercises and better overall health. "You can take Pilates with you in your daily life to pick up your kids or grandchildren or carry your groceries," she says. "It keeps you functioning longer." In fact, according to Vercoe, many clients tell her they wish they had found Pilates when they were younger because they realize how the exercise helps support daily movement through better posture, while also promoting increased function.
One of the differences that sets Pilates apart from other rehabilitative regimens for injured runners is that it supports and strengthens the whole body instead of just the injured part. Many athletes and individuals of all ages seek out Pilates after facing an injury because, as Vercoe tells us, Pilates encourages proper movement patterns, which prevent against future injuries. I recently returned to Pilates after years of being away from the studio, and after just a few months, I can attest to a better sense of body positioning and posture when I'm sitting at my desk, driving, walking or running.
What are the benefits of Pilates for runners?
There are many benefits of Pilates for runners since the fundamentals emphasize balance, mobility and breathing, while strengthening the core muscles that support running. Breathing patterns and body mechanics are essential to performing Pilates movements correctly, which easily translate into a runner's breathing patterns and posture to improve form and efficiency.
Margie Shapiro, a professional triathlete and co-owner of Potomac River Running stores and PR Training Programs in Virginia, suggests that "posture is one of the most influential factors in a runner's gait. The USA Triathalon-certified coach suggests "posture is one of the most influential factors in a runner's gait." According to Shapiro, "Pilates helps you identify areas of weakness that can inhibit running posture and learn muscular cues to help fire the muscles surrounding the diaphragm, spine, ribs and hips in such a way to maintain better posture through the gait cycle."
For injured runners or athletes, Pilates has the potential to aid in recovery. In fact, physical therapists often use Pilates equipment during rehabilitation sessions. Shapiro suggests that a runner could "use Pilates to improve balance, mobility and stability throughout the body to create a proper foundation from which to generate running movements."
Think of the running body as an automobile
Shapiro shares an automobile analogy to describe the foundation that a runner needs to prevent injury: "Most runners get injured not because of a poor engine, but rather because of a poor chassis (foundation) that can't keep up with the strong engine of the cardiovascular system."
Although just like any workout routine, it takes time and persistence to fully appreciate the benefits of Pilates, runners and non-runners alike will become more self-aware of their body positioning and breathing after just a few sessions.
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Elena Sonnino is a writer, public speaker, strategist, traveler, runner, cancer survivor and chaser of dreams. Her inspirational wellness, travel and social good stories have been published in the National Wildlife Federation's e-book, Be Out There, at the Huffington Post, TravelingMom.com, HiltonMomVoyage.com, ThisGirlTravels.com and BlogHer. Elena is passionate about fostering self-sufficiency and empowering others on her website, LiveDoGrow.com.