What is Pilates?
Pilates is a method of exercise and physical movement designed to stretch, strengthen, and balance the body. With systematic practice of specific exercises coupled with focused breathing patterns, Pilates has proven itself invaluable not only as a fitness endeavour, but also as an important adjunct to professional sports training and physical rehabilitation of all kinds .
How Pilates works in our body?
The Pilates is based on the use of functional exercises for improving muscular strength and endurance and train these muscles. It focuses on rehabilitation maintaining a ‘neutral spine,’ pelvic and spinal stability, along with activation or recruitment of deep stabilizer muscles (transverses abdominis, internal and external abdominal obliqus, and multifidus muscles) and pelvic floor muscles in combination with controlled breathing. This work efficiently to maintain the control in our body .
When we can use it? Scientific Evidence.
Fortunately, the Pilates phenomenon has transcended to the scientific sphere where numerous studies have shown and continue to demonstrate the beneficial results of the practice of this method to improve the quality of life of people who have very different physical and health conditions:
o CHRONIC NECK PAIN STUDY: “The beneficial effects of Pilates and yoga exercises on pain and related disability have been shown previously (11, 19, 21, 33–35). Our results were in accordance with those studies showing improvement in the outcome as regards quality of life, pain, disability and depression after 6 weeks .”
o CHRONIC LOW BACK PAIN STUDY: “Pilates exercise for the improvement of low back pain was studied in previous randomized controlled trial where the Pilates group undertook a 6-week program. These data suggest that Pilates improved nonspecific chronic LBP in an active population compared to no intervention. Additionally, Pilates improved general health, pain level, sports functioning, flexibility, and proprioception in individuals with chronic LBP .”
o KNEE OSTEOARTHRITIS STUDY: “While, regarding pain and disability, more significant improvement was observed in participants following Pilates training compared to CTE. It seemed that Pilates training was more effective than the CTE (conventional therapeutic exercise) to improve pain and disability in individuals with KOA (knee osteoarthritis) ”.
o DEPRESSION, ANXIETY AND QUALITY OF LIFE STUDY: “Physical training is an effective strategy for improving quality of life and emotional health status and can diminish morbidities associated with obesity, such as depression and anxiety symptoms. (…) Pilates exercise could be an alternative strategy for promoting health status and quality of life improvements in both nonclinical and clinical populations .”
o PREGNANT STUDY: “The results of this study indicated that Pilates is an effective, healthy, and feasible method of reducing pain in pregnancy, and is therefore a beneficial alternative workout for the suppression of pain in the third trimester of pregnancy .”
o OLDER ADULTS STUDY: “There is evidence that mat Pilates improves dynamic balance, lower limb strength, hip and lower back flexibility and cardiovascular endurance in elderly individuals .”
o CHRONIC STROKE PATIENTS STUDY: “Pilates is recognized as an exercise program that is effective in restoring physical functions in stroke patients. Pilates training was shown to improve autonomy, static balance, and quality of life, and even improve quality of life that had decreased due to chronic disorders over a long period .”
: Comparative effectiveness of lumbar stabilization, dynamic strengthening, and Pilates on chronic low back pain: randomized clinical trial by Esha A. Bhadauria and Peeyoosha Gurudut.
: Efects of pilates and yoga in patients with chronic neck pain a sonographic study by Naime ULUĞ, Öznur Tunca YILMAZ, Murat KARA and Levent ÖZÇAKAR.
: The comparison of the effectiveness of conventional therapeutic exercises and Pilates on pain and function in patients with knee osteoarthritis by Mazloum V, Rabiei P, Rahnama N and Sabzehparvar E.
: Pilates and aerobic training improve levels of depression, anxiety and quality of life in overweight and obese individuals by Rodrigo Luiz Vancini, Angeles Bonal Rosell Rayes, Claudio Andre Barbosa de Lira, Karine Jacon Sarro and Marilia Santos Andrade.
: Pilates workouts can reduce pain in pregnant women by Oktaviani I.
: Effects of Mat Pilates on Physical Functional Performance of Older Adults: a Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials by Roberta Oliveira Bueno de Souza; Liliane de Faria Marcon; Alex Sandro Faria de Arruda; Francisco Luciano Pontes Junior; Ruth Caldeira de Melo.
: Influence of pilates training on the quality of life of chronic stroke patients by Seok-Min Yun, Sang-Kyoon Park and Hee Sung Lim.