Practicing Pilates to Relieve Your Back Pain - Crozer-Keystone Health System - PA

Published on October 08, 2018

Practicing Pilates to Relieve Your Back Pain

By the staff at Healthplex® Sports Club

Pilates Class

Back pain is something you may be all too familiar with. An estimated 80 percent of adults will suffer from lower back pain at some point in their lifetime. Adding Pilates to your workout routine may help minimize or eliminate the pressure.

That’s because pain in the back can be be caused by muscle overuse or postural alignment problems. Certain exercises, such as Pilates, can target muscles in your back for relief. Pilates can improve your strength, flexibility, and posture in your back.

Doctor-recommended exercise may be able to help you reduce or avoid pain.

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a type of exercise that combines deep abdominal stretching and movement exercises. The goal of these sequences is to build better posture, flexibility, and muscle strength. You can improve all these areas while preventing and treating back pain.

A common misconception is that Pilates requires a lot of skill or equipment. While there are different levels and types of Pilates workouts, many exercises use just a mat. Pilates routines can adjust to being a gentle training exercise or a challenging workout.

The focus of Pilates is “body awareness.” While it is a type of workout, it also helps bring awareness to how you sit, stand, or move. Practicing good posture in workouts can help you better carry yourself throughout the day.

How It Works

When you slouch, muscles and ligaments in your back strain to maintain your body’s balance. Once these muscles are under stress or strain, it can cause pain. The spine has natural curves that run from the top to bottom. Having good posture helps maintain these curves to prevent strain that can lead to pain.

Pilates exercises focus on stretching all major muscle groups in the body. Studies show Pilates may help reduce lower back pain as well symptoms of arthritis and fibromyalgia. Pilates is low non-impact, allowing you to engage your muscle strength in a gentle way.

Having poor core strength can set you up for injury and put extra pressure on your knees, back, and shoulders. Pilates helps strengthen muscles in your core and back for better support of the spine.

How to Get Started

Before starting any new type of exercise, consult your doctor. Pilates can be a great and beneficial addition to your aerobic workouts.

If you’re experiencing back pain or have an injury, talk to your doctor about any movement limitations these may cause. Diabetes or pregnancy may also impact your ability to take part in Pilates.

It is important if you’re experiencing any back pain, to see a physician or healthcare professional. Starting any type of exercise before consulting a professional can cause more harm than good.

Pilates may not be recommended for those with certain conditions such as unstable blood pressure, severe osteoporosis, or a herniated disk.

When you are starting Pilates, it is important to learn how to maintain the correct form and avoid injury. It’s also a good idea to make sure you train with certified instructors when you’re just starting so that you do the exercises the right way and improve your health with proper form.

Learn about Pilates classes offered at Healthplex Sports Club.

Related Locations

eNewsletter Signup

Our eNewsletters from Crozer-Keystone Health System help keep you up-to-date on your health and well being. View recent editions or sign up to receive our free eNewsletters.