Pilates is a form of non-aerobic body conditioning exercise. ‘Clinical Pilates’ is a modification of traditional Pilates exercises developed by physiotherapists which incorporates their rehabilitation skills and recent research on lumbar instability and muscle imbalance.

It targets the deep postural muscles which are important in providing our bodies with stability and support. This helps to protect our joints and surrounding structures and aims to create a balance within the body. Through injury, illness or poor postural habits these muscles may become tight and overactive. This can lead to increased stresses and strains being places on our joints.

Clinical Pilates therefore helps to create a stable central core which is essential for maintaining correct posture, good control and balance of the whole body during the performance of normal daily activies or sport. Breathing techniques used in Clinical Pilates enhances relaxation and reinforces the activation of the deep abdominal muscles.

Benefits of Clinical Pilates:

  • Improved postural alignment
  • Increased flexibility of tight muscles
  • Builds and conditions core abdominal muscles, improving their tone
  • Alleviates back pain and pain caused by poor posture
  • Reduces recurrence of back pain
  • Improves sporting performance
  • Improves balance and co-ordination
  • Aids relaxation and reduces stress
  • Appropriate for all levels of fitness and can be progressed from basic to a very challenging level
  • Helps stress incontinence
  • Enhanced body/movement awareness
  • Evidence based
  • Close supervision by a physiotherapist ensures safe and appropriate levels of exercise are undertaken

Correcting poor movement patterns takes time. Pilates is not a ‘quick fix’, however by re-educating the muscles and encouraging sound muscle recruitment, normal natural movement is regained. With time hopefully you will learn to incorporate Pilates exercises and ideas into your daily lifestyle.

Pilates at Spire Portsmouth Hospital

Who is Pilates suitable for?
Pilates is suitable for all levels of fitness. It is non-competitive, the emphasis being places on individual progress. Everybody is different and the classes are tailored to take each person’s individual needs into consideration.

What should I wear?
Please wear comfortable clothes such as tracksuit bottoms/leggings and t-shirts. Reasonably tight fitting clothing allows the Pilates instructor to see and therefore correct your alignment more easily however this is not compulsory. Mats, pillows and other equipment will be provided.

What should I do if I have an injury?
If you have a particular problem and are currently seeing a medical practitioner/specialist please advise them that you are considering starting classes.

All physiotherapists at Spire Portsmouth Hospital are registered with the Health Professions Council (HPC) and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP). Find out more about our Spire Physiotherapy team.

The physiotherapy team at Spire Portsmouth Hospital

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