So many people are under the impression people only use Pilates for pain.

The fact is yes, Pilates is an effective way to help with pain and discomfort around joints and muscles. However, Pilates teachers are not doctors or medical professionals - unless of course they're qualified. I have helped train Physiotherapists, Osteopaths, Massage therapists and more in the Pilates technique. In conjunction with their practice Pilates has proved an effective tool.

Lady with red inflamed back muscles

When pain in non-specific - you've been gardening, or slept badly, waking with a stiff neck, a Pilates for Pain session may be just the thing to relieve the discomfort. A well trained Pilates teacher will have the knowledge to offer an effective class that won't aggravate your situation.

A brief questionnaire about your pain may lead them to suggest a medical diagnosis. With more information from a Physiotherapist or Osteopath a Pilates teacher can decide on the best path forward for your programme.

Often medical practitioners will recommend Pilates for clients dealing with long-term pain management. These clients may be fearful of movement which their medical professional knows is the best way forward to help them deal with everyday tasks. A Pilates/medical collaboration has proved effective for clients with chronic pain


Pilates for Pain Prevention

Taking regular Pilates classes is an effective preventative measure to avoid pain from joint stiffness if you're less active, especially as you grow older. With age can come an assumption you'll be more prone to aches, pains and illness. This isn't necessarily true.

"We don't stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing".

George Bernard Shaw

Senior with Parkinsons using weights

Staying active doesn't mean a strict regime of aggressive exercise. When you chose a structured programme like Pilates the class will be tailored to meet your needs. Stability, Mobility, Strength and Balance will be included at a level to suit your ability. With regular practice you'll notice an improvement in your confidence with movement, not only when attending class but in your everyday posture and confidence.

Pilates For Rehabilitation

When you've turned your ankle playing sport, or put your shoulder out over-reaching when decorating or any other sprain, break or muscle pull. When the pain has subsided you'll need to regain stability, mobility and strength in the affected muscles or joint.

Pilates is perfect for this sort of rehabilitation, With its controlled, precise exercises a gradual return to fitness and health are guaranteed.

In Conclusion

Pilates for Pain covers all areas from chronic pain or just regular Pilates classes to help avoid age-related changes to joints and muscles. Whatever you need from your Pilates class a good teacher will provide it. Whether you choose a group class or want a more personalised programme make sure your teacher is well qualified and experienced to help with your needs.

Nuala Coombs
Pilates For You
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