By Shruti Patel, Physiotherapist
We have all heard about Pilates. But what exactly is Pilates and is it the right type of exercise for you? Joseph Pilates developed the exercises in the 1920’s. He experimented with a lot of Western and Eastern forms of exercises and developed a system of original exercises. His disciples later adopted his techniques with their own particular learning.
Pilates is the art of controlled movements. It incorporates up to 9 principles namely; Relaxation, concentration, alignment, centering, breathing, coordination, stamina, flow, and precision.
Types of Pilates classes:
Pilates classes can be categorised into matwork or reformer. The exercises focus on improving your core strength and stability, posture, muscular tone, muscular control, and balance amongst other benefits. Also, a majority of exercises are done in sitting or lying on the mats or reformer and therefore are low impact on your joints. Pilates workouts can also involve equipment like gym balls and pilates rings.
Who can do Pilates? What are the benefits?
Pilates is a suitable form of exercise for all age groups and in all stages of rehabilitation. Pilates can be done for general conditioning, pre and post-operative rehabilitation, chronic conditions, pre and post-natal, for strengthening and improving core strength and stability, and balance. Core strengthening has led to improvements in lower back injuries.
Pilates if performed under supervision by instructors should not increase your pain levels. If there is any rise in your pain levels, please let our instructors/physios know so they can modify your exercises accordingly. You should however expect mild post-exercise soreness in your muscles which is normal after any form of exercises.
Before we start Pilates classes, we will book an assessment session with our physiotherapists to get all your relevant medical history, baseline measurements, and your short-term and long-term goals so we can tailor-make a program designed just for you. We will also reassess you at regular intervals so we can keep it all up to date with any changes.
If you are interested in Pilates, do not hesitate to book a session with our qualified physiotherapists. If you want to know more about Pilates classes and/or have any further questions, please contact our friendly team.
Gallagher S, & Krynowska R. (Ed.) 2000 The Joseph H. Pilates. Collection Archive. Philadelphia Bain Bridge Books Pub.
Hibbs A, Thompson K, French D, Wrigley A, Spears I. 2008 Optimizing performance by improving core stability and core strength. English Institute of Sport, Gateshead, UK