What is better for getting the back and neck strong again; Pilates, Yoga or Movement Revolution?
Which is better for spinal alignment and posture correction?
Is it Pilates, Yoga or Movement Revolution?
Every day our clients ask us this question, ‘Which approach is better for my back, core or posture?
So, it depends what you need to get from the exercise and what way your back pain is behaving. Your Physiotherapist will advise you the best course of action for you and your back to reduce pain and build up long lasting strength.
To be honest all approaches are good and effective to help people in the many areas that the typically experience persistent or recurring back pain.
This is achieved through a combination of improving movement, breathing patterns, developing core strength as well as flexibility, mobility and above all reducing fear and poor movement patterns that back pain people so often present with
All approaches can be effective but what does the science say?
Pilates appears to be a head of Yoga when it comes to the supporting evidence base, but this may be because there are more studies carried out regarding how effective it is clinically.
Physiotherapist led Pilates targets all the right areas in a structured manner that address and integrates the key areas such as breathing, pelvic position sense or spinal alignment awareness & posture, core control & strength as well as movement variation.
This very gradual structured approach lends itself to be a useful rehabilitation exercise option when treating back and neck pain particularly in the earlier stages of recovery.
The programme progressively builds a person’s core strength, control and breathing patterns from the ground up and while this is happening over time the person with Low back pain is gradually increasing in confidence, feeling stronger and most importantly experiencing less and less pain as the weeks and months go by.
Yes, we say months and we mean months, because if you really want to re-build strength and confidence in your movement then it takes time and consistent effort. The good news is that we are here to support you on your way.
The other plus for Pilates is that you don’t need any equipment other than a comfortable mat that you use on the floor so you can practice it anywhere which is very important because your road to solving your back pain will require consistency and commitment from your part.
We are there to help teach and guide you on your path pain free living.
So, Pilates and Yoga will both help Focus you on your breathing and relaxation. They will give you some core control and strength and so you just have to find out;
- Which one works best for you,
- Which one you enjoy most,
- Which one you would be most likely to keep going in attending for a number of months,
because it needs consistency, it needs you to be practicing at least twice a week to get the most out of your classes, so that you build confidence that you restore normal breathing patterns, that you de-stress and that your body works well.
What is the most important thing?
A balance is key for homeostasis.
So, is it breathing, balance, strength, core, movement, flexibility or fitness not to mention the nutrition domain? So, which one is most important then? No single one on its own but a balance of everything is the answer.
It is key that all of these things work together to allow you to function properly in our world today (environment) which typically these days means, busy days running and racing as part of the rat race, stress with traffic, high sugar diets, compromised sleep due to excess screen time.
Pilates, Yoga or Movement Revolution – will help teach you how to de-stress from whatever it was that aggravated or annoyed you and cause tension in your body so you can deal with the day more effectively and live a life of peace and enjoyment.
Not only that these disciplines will positively challenge your body so that your strength, flexibility and fitness will improve and along with this your confidence, oh and your pain will become a thing of the past….
Yoga, Pilates & our own Movement Revolution ,which is a class designed by physios that focuses on the best exercises to get you fit flexible and pain free.
Pilates can be ‘Mat’ or ‘Reformer’ – based and there are multiple different levels that you can progress through. All of which challenge you and put progressively higher demands of core control and stability on the body.
The majority of our clients who attend our Physio Led Pilates classes report experiencing the classes being physically challenging while having the feeling of reduced tension and being relaxed afterwards.
Our Pilates, Movement Revolution and Functional Rehab clients report feeling significant reductions in their back or neck pain and also feel much more confident in their backs, having a reduced fear of movement, being more relaxed and sleeping better after just 10 weeks.
Our classes are guided by physiotherapists and typically follow-on after an assessment with the physiotherapist beforehand.
This helps to determine what is the best course of action for you and your back, so you avoid the risk of aggravating anything firstly and secondly that you get the very best out of the class.
The reason we do this is because Low back pain is complex so we will need to make sure that we have addressed all the possible contributing factors that contribute to your back pain before you start.
Why, you may ask? Because this will ensure you get the very best results out of the class with little or no setbacks.
You see, we are not going to put you in a class and just do exercise if we know that there is a significant element of psychological stress in your life that could be contributing to your back pain that you / we haven’t addressed.
This is very important, actually critical, in our professional and experienced opinion, to getting the long-term benefits that you want and need.
We know we can help guide and support you on your journey to get the results you want, which for most people, is living life without back pain, without the fear of moving, whether its being able to do the gardening, playing with the grandkids
or enjoy that round of golf with your friends that you used to look forward to so much, or just to be able to do whatever it is you want to do with the confidence that your back will be totally fine.
What is Physiotherapy-led Pilates?
Pilates is a versatile form of non-impact exercise, designed to build strength, flexibility, co-ordination and endurance, using controlled movements without building bulk or stressing joints.
It also helps to sculpt the body and strengthen the body’s ‘core’ or ‘powerhouse’ (torso). Pilates is suitable for all ages, fitness levels and life stages and is a favourite exercise activity of celebrities and professional athletes alike.
Physiotherapy-led Pilates is instructed by a specifically trained physiotherapist, ensuring that each client is engaging the correct muscles and position during the class.
What are the benefits of Physiotherapy led Pilates?
- longer, leaner muscles (less bulk, more freedom of movement)
- improves postural problems
- increased core strength
- peripheral mobility
- helps prevent injury
- enhances functional fitness and
- ease of movement
- heightens body awareness
can be customised to suit everyone from rehabilitation patients to elite athletes
supplements other methods of exercise
improves performance in sports
improves balance, coordination and circulation
relief from muscle stress and back pain.
What does the Evidence Say?
Ongoing research is proving the long term benefits of Pilates, particularly among populations presenting with non-specific or ongoing low back pain.
One particular study by Gladwell et al (2006) showed that subjects with non-specific low back pain who participated in a six-week Pilates program experienced an improvement in their back-pain symptoms, compared to the control group who did not participate in Pilates.
The Pilates group had improvements in general health, pain levels, sports functioning, flexibility, and proprioception
If anything we cover in our blogs sounds like your own personal story, and you think that we can help you, pick up the phone and give us a call to arrange an appointment or speak to one of our lead back pain Physios.
Have a great day and stay tuned. Click on few of the links if you haven’t already done so to get an idea of what we do and more importantly how we can help you or someone you know who is living in pain.
‘Move Well, Feel Well, Be Well‘.
If you have any queries or you are not quite sure where to begin, feel free to contact us online/ over the phone or you can avail of a free minute physio consultation in clinic with one of our physiotherapists. You can book online at https://www.apcphysio.ie/speak-with-physio/ Or
Give us a call on 02535015 today to talk through any questions and concerns you may have. Thanks for reading!