With our new Pilates classes starting here at Thornleigh Performance Physiotherapy we thought it would be a good idea to give the Pilates grommets a bit of background. Our point of difference is our small class sizes (Max 6) and as with everything we do, attention to detail.  It is too late to book in for this weeks, but still a couple spots left next week!


What is Pilates?

German-born Joseph Pilates first developed Pilates in the early 1990s as a form of exercise that involved mind-body centering techniques that emphasised the importance of beginning movement from a central core of stability (the lumbo-pelvic region). He spent his childhood fighting rickets, asthma, and rheumatic fever and was told he would never be able to play sport again. Joe, determined to become physically immune to his ailments, studied Yoga, zen meditation and the rigorous regimes of the ancient Greeks and Romans, and by his teens became highly skilled at gymnastics and diving.

Clinical Pilates is a modified form of Pilates developed through evidence based research of core stabilisation and correct muscle activation and recruitment of the deep staibilising muscles. It emphasises the balanced development of the body through core strength, flexibility and awareness, in order to support effective and efficient movement. Core stability refers to the deep stabilising muscles that attach to the spine and the pelvis. These include the transversus abdominus, pelvic floor, and the internal obliques, and are sometimes collectively called the ‘powerhouse’ of our body because movement, power and stability originate here. These muscles help control movements, transfer energy, shift body weight and with general movement. A strong core helps distribute the stresses of weight bearing and protects the back by maintaining a stable and balanced body during both static (stationary) and dynamic postures.

Pain, injury and/or poor posture can cause the core stabilising muscles to ‘switch off’. These muscles do not automatically switch on again by themselves. It is important that we turn them back on again. Recent evidence suggests that you are less likely to have a recurrence of back pain if rehabilitation involves exercises that activate and strengthen the deep stabilising muscles. Clinical Pilates incorporates the work of stabilisation training, injury prevention, and spinal and peripheral biomechanics. The use of Pilates can help to address the underlying cause of pain, recurring injuries and/or weakness by assessing and treating (via exercises) the biomechanics of the body as a whole.