Posted November 30, 2010 - 9:45am by Corinne Dawson
Pilates can be done by anyone and everyone. In recent decades, Pilates has been found to be very useful to people with back pain. Back pain can be caused by a wide variety of things, but chronic low back pain often results from poor posture and muscle weakness. Before taking a lesson, it is strongly suggested that a doctor determine the cause of the back pain, and whether Pilates would be an appropriate solution. Here at Galter LifeCenter, a person with back pain can start working on finding the solution though several directions. Some start with exercise, but many begin by consulting with a back specialist or neurosurgeon from the Chicago Back Institute, or a physical therapist. When the problem is identified and addressed, Pilates may be suggested post rehab. Working one on one with a Pilates instructor is the best way to get started. Later on, a group class may be appropriate for some people once they are pain free.
The first project for a new client is to develop more awareness about their bodies. When first learning Pilates, I often hear new clients say, “Am I supposed to use these muscles all day long?!”, or, “I had no idea how tight my body was!”. Becoming present in the body and learning how to use the mind to check in and feel the right muscles supporting you all day is invaluable. We train clients to keep the powerhouse engaged to lengthen and support the spine. This is not just for during workouts, but for use when standing, sitting, and moving through their everyday lives. We train the muscles that support the pelvis and spine to create length and strength together to create a more efficient body. Every back is different and it takes time and patience to change habits and patterns that have been in the body for years. With consistent hard work, though, Pilates can change how much back pain is affecting someone’s life.
Tip of the Day: If you are experiencing serious back pain, it is not recommended to jump into a group Pilates class at a health club. Consult with your doctor first, and schedule a private lesson to address your own needs.