to know Pilates
and Back Pain
One of the reasons that Pilate is popular is because Pilates works well with
the various pain that we may have in the body.
Back pain is
one of the most complaints that doctors report hearing from
their patients. It now appears that the popular fitness trend
pilates can help ease this common ailment. Recent research
shows that the tension and soreness associated with back pain
can be eased significantly through the practice of pilates.
Pilates, research shows, can help with the neutral alignment
of the spin and can help strengthen the muscles that support
proper posture. This in turn can help ameliorate much of the
pain associated with back problems. Fundamentally, the underlying
principles of pilates have been found to be beneficial for
a number of common back problems.
Who can benefit the most
from pilates? It appears that those patients who suffer from
degeneration of the joints and intervertebral discs are most
likely to find significant improvement from some kind of regular
pilates practice. Pilates can also improve overall back
including improved postural symmetry, circulation, and joint
and muscle strength.
When your posture is improved,
your back muscles receive less tension, resulting in less wear
and tear on the intervertebral joints and discs. Your muscles
become stronger and suppler, your movements become more fluid,
and your body becomes more efficient in dealing with stress
and tension. Pilates can teach you greater awareness of how
your body moves and can help you change any bad habits that
may be hurting your back.
As with any form of physical
exercise, before you decide to pursue pilates for your back
pain, make sure to consult with a medical professional. Depending
on your specific health and circumstances, a pilates program
may or may not be recommended for you. If you and your doctor
decide that pilates is right for you, make sure that you find
an experienced and professional pilates instructor. Your pilates
instructor should be certified in pilates instruction.
If possible, try to find
a pilates instructor with experience in working with back
pain patients. Make sure the instructor understands your specific
back problems before even beginning a program. Remember, although
pilates can be specially tailored for just about anyone, it
is important that you receive one on one instruction, especially
if you are a beginner. To the untrained eye, pilates appears
gentle and easy to do. But if done incorrectly, certain pilates
movements can exacerbate your back pain and actually cause
Some back patients use pilates
in conjunction with professional physical therapy treatment.
Patients report increased flexibility, decreased pain, improved
circulation, and improved posture from a program that combines
pilates and conventional physical therapy. Make certain that
your therapist is aware that you are also taking part in a
pilates program, and vice versa.
This can help ensure that
you do not place too much stress on your body by overexerting
yourself. Overexertion can lead to even more problems, even
though you may not feel the effects immediately. In some cases,
your physical therapist may outline certain movements and principles
that are important for your particular case. Speak with your
pilates instructor about your physical therapists instructions,
if there are any.
Pilates for pregnancy
With hundreds of movements incorporated into the exercise program, Pilate has
received much critical acclaim in the pop culture world of today. Many
people look to pilates in order to increase their flexibility and their
muscle tone, but few realize the benefits that one can merit when it comes
to using pilates in order to help new moms get their bodies back into shape.
Since Pilates recent rise
in pop culture, more and more people have been subscribing
to the program, and it’s benefits for certain groups
have shown to be more effective than Joseph could have imagined.
To that end, there are actually some pilates studios that are
opened today that are designed exclusively for helping women
who have just had children to get their former body back.
While pilates isn’t
an exercise program that focuses on fat-burning and weight
loss, one of the things that it does stress is the strengthening
of the muscle areas that Joseph Pilates referred to as the
core, or the ‘powerhouse’. These muscles consist
of the muscles that are in and around the back and abdomen.
Consequently, this is the area that most pregnant women experience
the most changes in post-pregnancy. Pilates programs for new
mothers focus on the core exercises of the pilates program,
working to strengthen the muscles of the pelvis, back and abdomen.
Some of the studios even
offer places for the newborns to stay while the mother is working
out. For those who don’t have a post-natal pilates class
available in their local area, there are DVDs and instructional
videos online that you can purchase in order to get the benefits
of a pilates workout in the courtesy of your own home.
New moms needn’t worry
about exerting themselves extensively in the pilates program;
it focuses on low-intensity workouts that can benefit the body
in a less drastic way than the methods offered via a conventional
workout. The benefits offered by the program aren’t limited
to the physical body alone, either: many that indulge in the
program find that they are faced with lower stress levels and
a greater sense of peace after performing the workout.
Also, while many workouts
cause you to feel exhausted after participating in them, pilates
may actually give rise to more energy! For these reasons, it’s
a great program for women who have just delivered a child to
get their bodies back in shape.
While it is not a program
that is known for its weight loss potential, when coupled with
a high-intensity exercise program such as a swimming regimen,
it can be great for your body. If you’ve just had a child
and are looking to get your body back into shape, pilates may
help you by providing a gentle increase in exercise and physical
activity that can really benefit you.
Pilates and Weight
Many people who are attracted to the Pilates Method are interested in this
form of body conditioning exercise in order to achieve a slim and toned body.
Although aerobics once ruled the world of weight loss exercises,
the importance of strength training in successful weight loss has slowly come
into focus. Pilates has become popular because it promises a strong and healthy
body without the bulk of conventional strength conditioning.
Instead, strength comes in
the form of long and lean muscles. Part of the attraction of
pilates has to do with the fact that one of its primary aims
is to strengthen and condition the whole body. While other
forms of exercise and strength condition tend to work only
certain sets of muscles, pilates aims to strengthen the whole
body. With pilates, even the muscles in your feet become stronger
Why is strength training
so importance in weight loss? Most people who try to lose
weight make the mistake of focusing primarily on their caloric intake
and calorie burning exercises. Although this makes sense, most
people become frustrated when their nearly heroic efforts fail
to bear the desired results.
The trick, many health and
fitness experts agree, lies in strength training. While it's
true that it's important to have a caloric deficient in order
to lose weight, the importance of your lean body mass is often
overlooked. Your lean body mass is the thin layer of muscle
mass that is continually burning calories. Your lean body mass
lies just under your body fat, and 24 hours a day, seven days
a week, it is constantly working, burning away calories.
Most people who strive to
lose weight focus on losing their body fat. It's actually far
more efficient to build up your lean body mass. You may have
heard before that simply starving yourself does not help you
achieve permanent weight loss because you tend to lose muscle.
This is true: when you starve yourself, you lose that important
lean body mass, when it should be acting as your ally in the
battle against the bulge.
So what can you do to keep
your lean body mass and get rid of that undesirable body fat?
Pilates is one way to go. Because pilates is essentially a
strength-training program, it can help you lose weight by helping
you keep your lean body mass, and even increase it. When your
lean body mass is healthy, your metabolism increases, allowing
you to burn more fat on a continual basis. The key is to choose
a pilates program that you can do on a regular basis and which
continually challenges you.
If your pilates program seems
rather easy, you may not be training hard enough to ensure
continual weight loss. In order to maximize your efforts, use
pilates in conjunction with an appropriate aerobics program.
This will ensure that you retain your lean body mass, increase
your metabolism, and add a good cardiovascular element to your
exercise regime. Pilates is an important part of your strength
training, weight loss program, but augmenting with a component
of aerobics can make your program doubly effective.