‘Centrology (Pilates) develops the body uniformly, corrects wrong postures, restores physical vitality, invigorates the mind, and elevates the spirit’ – Joseph Pilates
Clinical Pilates is a therapeutic form of exercise aimed at improving the way you use your body, by improving the central ‘core’ around which movement takes place. Pilates evolved over the early 1900’s led by German-born Joseph Pilates, who began his association with the Dance Community in New York in 1940. Pilates has since evolved into physiotherapy practice due to emerging research on the importance of the ‘core’ for injury prevention and rehabilitation. Clinical Pilates is different to generic and fitness Pilates seen in gyms and other studios. This is because it is instructed by highly qualified physiotherapists with post-graduate qualifications who base their practice on strong evidence supporting the use of therapeutic exercise to manage injuries such as low back pain.
Equipment you will see in our Clinical Pilates studio include reformers and trapeze. Research has shown this equipment is effective at helping core muscles work correctly. Whilst starting in the clinical setting/studio the goal is for these skills you learn to be incorporated into your daily life or training program to manage your injuries independently. Clinical Pilates may be used in conjunction with physiotherapy as part of the overall management plan or simply to keep your body healthy!
The foundation of Clinical Pilates exercises is correct functioning and strength of the deepest muscles of the abdomen, back and pelvis known as the ‘core’. These muscles form a corset-like support around your lower trunk and pelvis. Several muscles form your core in your tummy and pelvic region. These muscles work together to provide stability and support to the spine and pelvis whilst preventing it from getting injured.
When your core muscles are strong and functioning effectively, they work in conjunction with the larger muscles of the trunk to produce efficient and controlled movement. This improves the way force is transferred throughout the entire body. If the trunk is stable, there will be less stress on the joints of the spine enabling free and efficient movement. The effective use of core muscles has been shown to improve posture, flexibility and strength whilst reducing muscle tension and joint pain. This is why Clinical Pilates has proven effective in the treatment of back pain and other joint conditions. Clinical Pilates is also an excellent form of exercise for athletes returning to sport after injury, or in conjunction with training for peak performance.
1. Clinical Pilates Assessment
In your initial session, your Physiotherapist will assess your injuries and problem areas. We will take a full history and evaluate your goals which is important to make sure your expectations and needs are met. In this session we will also perform a full spinal and pelvic injury screen with a series of clinical tests to detect and potentially prevent injury developing. A Real-time Ultrasound assessment of your core muscles will also be performed to assess if you can activate these muscles effectively. This is an invaluable tool at the commencement of your program and will enable you to see your muscles working on the screen
2. 1:1 Clinical Pilates
Focused 1:1 sessions may be necessary to ensure you are taught correct technique with instruction on posture, breathing and muscle activation techniques. We use specific physiotherapy equipment to give you extra feedback and will monitor you every step of the way. We can also provide you with advice on exercise outside of Clinical Pilates so that you get the most out of your session. These sessions are particularly important for those new to Clinical Pilates or if you have multiple injuries that need extra attention.
3. Group Clinical Pilates
Group sessions are kept small with close monitoring of your technique to ensure your individual goals are met. All group sessions are instructed by physiotherapists, with regular sessions conducted on most days of the week. We take a maximum of three participants per session to ensure you are receiving the attention that you deserve.
Benefits of Clinical Pilates
- Increased Length & Flexibility
- Improved Strength
- Improved Co-ordination
- Improved Posture and Alignment
- Improved Bladder Function
- Increased Deep Abdominal Strength
- Improved Concentration and Energy
- Improved Heart and Lung Health
- Reduced Stress & Anxiety
- Improved Athletic Performance
- Management/Prevention of Injury
- Improved Quality of Life
- Reduced Back Pain