According to this Wall Street Journal article, by Kevin Helliker yes they do. Core strength is the new buzzword in exercise circles. Everyone from elite athletes to weekend warriors are finding their inner strength (pun intended).
To quote Helliker:
After years of conquering the treadmill and bench press, I am now striking poses and performing movements that I had always considered “girly,” and the difficulty of it is humbling.
While he doesn’t specifically use the word Pilates, the three exercises illustrated in the article, glute bridge, pillar bridge and plank, look very similar to Pilates moves I do with my clients.
According to the author: “After three months of two core-training sessions a week, my body-fat percentage is down five points. My cruising speed on the treadmill has risen a full mile per hour, even though my weekly mileage plummeted to make time for the core exercises.”
Want to improve your running time? Try adding some core strengthening exercises to your program.
Here are three simple and effective core strengtheners. Shoot for one minute of each of these:
Plank hold: Make a straight line from your shoulder to your knee. Pull your belly button in and relax your neck.
Crunches: Rest your hands behind your head and slowly curl head and shoulders off the ground. This is about half as much effort as a traditional sit up. Think of flattening your abdominals and breathing.
Pilates Bridge: Press into your heels to lift your hips towards the ceiling without gripping with your glutes. Imagine your spine getting longer and your neck relaxing.
Try these moves two to three times a week for the next month and see if you notice a difference in your strength workouts.