Sports Med is offering small group Pilates classes led by a chartered physiotherapist in 2 locations, city centre & Ballymount. 6 sessions for €90 or a drop in class for €20. Enter your details in the contact form if you would like to join one of our classes.
Pilates exercises focus on body awareness, breathing, movement control, posture, core stability & strength. Pilates emphasises beginning movement from the central core of stability progressing towards functional movements and has proven benefits in individuals suffering from low back pain.
Pilates retrains the deep abdominal and spinal muscles. Transversus abdominis, multifidus, the diaphragm and the pelvic floor muscles are co-activated to form an enclosed ‘cylinder of stability’ which increases spinal stability. In Pilates, this cylinder of stability is referred to as the ‘central core’. The various exercises taught & practised during the Pilates class focus on activating this central core with the aim to make this activation more automatic in everyday activities.
Pilates can help to:
- Strengthen and tone the core muscles
- Improve spinal mobility
- Improve postural awareness
- Improve flexibility
- Challenge balance & proprioception
- Improve co-ordination
- Relieve stress & tension
Pilates as a form of exercise
Pilates is a safe form of exercise that can be practised by people of all ages and varying fitness levels. It is a very flexible form of exercise in that it allows the different exercises to be modified to varying ranges of difficulty so is suitable for complete beginner’s right up to a more advanced population.
The Pilates exercises are based on the following 5 Basic Principles include:
- Lateral Breathing
- Ribcage Placement
- Shoulder Blade Placement
- Head & Neck Posture
Benefit of Pilates for prevention and rehabilitation of back injuries:
With lower back pain, there is a 60-80% recurrence rate within 3-12months without proper rehabilitation. Pilates can be employed as part of an effective preventative & rehabilitation strategy. £1.6 billion spent on lower back pain treatments in the UK annually and a further £5 billion lost through 11 million days off annually (Times, 2004).
What are the consequences of pain?
Pain alters normal movement patterns and inhibits the deep local stabilisers. There is a reflex inhibition of postural muscles and protective global muscle spasm is initiated. In healthy individuals the tranversus abdominis activates prior to limb movements to provide postural support to the lumbar spine (Hodges & Richardson, 1997). However, in lower back pain patients, transversus abdominis activation occurs after limb movement and therefore renders the lumbar spine less supported during functional activities. Recovery is not automatic therefore the muscles need to be challenged and Pilates is a great modality to do this.