Tag Archive | pilates rehab

Pilates often referred by Physical Therapists and Chiropractors

Pilates private sessions are a wonderful tool to rehabilitate your body after injury or Physical Therapy. It’s gentle and low-impact exercise form where your body can heal without putting too much pressure on your injury side but still working out your whole body. After injury your muscles learn to work different, inefficient way and sometimes you will need professional eyes to correct your faulty muscle recruitment and faulty compensation patterns. These two issues make your healing process much more complicated and risk of other injuries increases if you don’t notice how you are actually using your body.

Already about 70 years ago during the second world war Mr. Pilates developed his method to treat soldiers who were injured at the war. He created a specific hospital bed where he used resistance of springs and bands. He was very clever guy and really ahead of his time.  Pilates is today a great and practical tool for rehabilitation and many Physical Therapist as well as Chiropractors have noticed that. However, many Pilates studios are owned by certified Pilates Instructors who unfortunately have very limited knowledgeable about orthopedic rehabilitation or post-rehabilitation. Pilates Instructors might want to grow their businesses so badly that they are willing to take clients who have many health problems, but don’t exactly know how to deal with those problems. I see a big risk of injury or re-injury here! Pilates is a really good rehabilitation tool but Pilates instructors would need much more education about anatomy, biomechanics and orthopedic injuries & rehab than the standard comprehensive Pilates education offers today. For example, all back pain is not the same, and Pilates instructor who has had back pain herself and recovered from it by doing Pilates, is not necessary a good teacher to teach other people with back problems. Pilates is a good tool, but the teacher has to know exactly how to use that tool properly, efficiently and safely for each client. People with back pain have usually more problems and issues than just weak core muscles.

Very often Physical Therapists and Chiropractors don’t know about how long the Pilates instructors education is and how little they actually know about anatomy, injuries and rehabilitation. As a Physical Therapist myself, I was very surprised when I heard that one chiropractor referred his client of age 88, has osteoporosis and two lumbar vertebrae fractures, to a Pilates Instructor. I know that this Pilates instructor was very experienced, but not educated as a Physical Therapist, and I don’t think that this client was general ‘Pilates material‘. Pilates is a great and versatile exercise tool but in this case only taught by a skilled Physical Therapist. Pilates Instructors are expected to know what their skill level is and where their limits are. Unfortunately, today’s economy puts a lot of pressure on Pilates business owners, and even though they don’t have enough education they will take and treat rehab clients as any other normal clients. If you are looking for a Pilates studio to rehabilitate your injury or post-rehab after Physical Therapy, do your homework first and ask questions from studio’s instructors to find out how skilled and experienced they really are for your case. I definitely recommend Pilates for everyone who is looking for rehabilitation or post-rehabilitation after Physical Therapy – just be sure that your instructor is really experienced and educated in that field.

For more about PilatesWise  active back rehabilitation, orthopedic injury rehabilitation and sport injury recover and prevention, please visti our website http://www.pilateswise.com .

Check out also this pilateswise video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R40kIPla2Dc


Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis and Pilates Exercise Program


What is common between Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Multiple Sclerosis (MS)? They all are autoimmune diseases, where your own cells start to attack your healthy tissues and organs. There are over eighty autoimmune diseases, each with it’s own unique symptoms. Lupus and Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms are similar; painful and inflamed joints, extreme fatigue, anxiety and depression. People with Multiple sclerosis have a little different problems like loss of muscle strength, sensation, coordination and balance. All these three diseases consist of pain which make life more complicated and can make everyday life more challenging both physically and psychologically.

When your muscles and joints hurts, it’s definitely not the first thing on your mind to get up and move. However, a proper exercise program is one of the treatments for all those three diseases. Inactivity and disuse cause more pain and discomfort in your body. Disused muscles become weak by supporting less your joints and making your joints more instable which causes even more pain. Disused joints (while they are stiff and painful), reduce joints’ range of motion which also increases pain. Lack of exercise has also found to be related to fatigue and overall stress of your body which makes it harder to cope with your symptoms. Regular exercise program has many benefits by improving your body function and mood while reducing stress, fatigue and pain.

Pilates is a great exercise form for clients with Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Multiple Sclerosis. Pilates is low-impact, gentle and gradually progressive. Unfortunately, Pilates exercises should be taught preferably by a Physical Therapist. Pilates Instructors in general do not usually have enough experience in these three conditions and how they affect your joints, muscles and neuro-muscle control. Pilates Instructors who have dancers or fitness background find often difficult to understand Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Multiple Sclerosis special needs and conditions. You simply can’t teach client who has pain and inflamed joints (Lupus, RA) or who has coordination and balance problems (MS) the same way as regular fitness clients. Pilates Instructors are not therapists and oftentimes a too confident Pilates Instructor without experience can make the client overdo the exercises and cause flare-up because it’s too much too soon. Pilates program should be specifically designed based on every client’s individual condition, limitation and needs. Without a proper education and experience that is obviously pretty hard to do.

If the Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis client has painful and inflamed joints, it’s important to maintain proper range of motion of joints and not put too much pressure on inflamed joints. Sometimes it is enough to do just isometric exercises which means muscle contraction without joint movements. Multiple Sclerosis client needs carefully assisted movements due to muscle weakness and co-ordination difficulties. There are many Pilates movements in Pilates repertoire which is very beneficial but maybe sometimes not enough. That’s why I warmly recommended to find a Pilates program where trained Physical Therapist is teaching and makes safely modifications based on each client’s current needs and also uses therapeutic exercise techniques as needed. A well designed Pilates and exercise program will definitely promote your physical and emotional well-being and quality of life.

More abour PilatesWise program for Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Multiple Sclerosis Please visit our website http://www.pilateswise.com

Pilates rehabilitates shoulder rotator cuff injuries

Shoulder joint has wider and more varied range of motion than any other joint in the human body. It’s also most unstable joint which means high risk of injury. Everyone has heard something about rotator cuff and related problems, but how many knows that rotator cuff muscles have very important role in a proper the shoulder function and injury prevention?

The rotator cuff muscles (supraspinatus, infraspinatus, teres minor, subscapularis) attach around to the shoulder ball and help rotate shoulder as well lift the arm overhead. Rotator cuff muscles also stabilize the shoulder’s head in the shoulder socket and keep it in the proper position for a proper use of the arm. Rotator cuff muscle fatigue from excessive use, weakness or lack of endurance as the ball of the shoulder joint becomes more mobile and less stable (called instability). This causes the rotator cuff tendons to touch with the bone, which can lead to irritation of the tendon, inflammation and pain (impingement syndrome). Common causes of rotator cuff injury are repetitive overhead arm movements (volleyball, tennis, baseball and swimming), improper weight training, poor posture and aging process of the joints.

In rehabilitation in sub-acute stage of Rotator Cuff you will start to strengthen your rotator cuff muscles which typically means shoulder internal and external rotation exercises with band. It’s also very important to make sure that shoulder joint have full range of motion and flexibility. Comprehensive shoulder rehabilitation program also includes shoulder blade stabilization exercises. If the shoulder blade is not stable, undue pressure may be placed on the rotator cuff. So, strengthening the muscles that support the scapula (rhomboids, trapezius, and serratus anterior) are important too.

Even when you are pain-free and your shoulder has full range of motion, it’s important to still keep your rehabilitation going and build you strength and flexibility by preventing further injuries. Pilates is a method which works very well for rotator cuff post-rehabilitation and injury prevention. Pilates exercises focus on strengthening stabilizer muscles for your core but also other stabilizer muscles around your joints. This very unique exercise method helps you re-educate your injured shoulder to work together with rest of the body and avoid unwanted movement patters, muscle work and extra tension.

Very often poor posture – forwarded head, rounded shoulder, abducted shoulder blades – can cause shoulder problems and shoulder girdle dysfunction. Pilates improves posture by balancing muscle imbalances. Training with a qualified Pilates instructor, who has good knowledge about proper posture, shoulder biomechanics and injuries, helps you use your whole body more safely, efficiently and economically. If you are lucky enough to find a truly experienced Pilates instructor, you will get big benefits from your Pilates training. Pilates does not only rehabilitate your shoulder and muscles, it also gives you invaluable information how you hold, use and work your body from head to toe by preventing injuries – and that information is priceless!

Please check also PilatesWise youtube video info clip about rotator cuff syndrome, click HERE