As a human, most of us will experience some type of back pain at one point or another during our life. For some of us, this pain might be due to an injury such as a car accident or a fall. For others, the pain might just come on for no apparent reason. One day you wake up with back pain, or you simply put the key into the car and feel that slight twinge which increases with intensity to a full out “pain in the back”. For most of us, this back pain can be prevented and relieved with Pilates exercises. At ScoliosisPTJax, our Pilates instructors have the knowledge and experience to guide you through an exercise program that will help you strengthen your core to prevent or decreased back pain.
The unique qualities of the Pilates equipment can help balance your muscles. The springs on the pilates reformer engage and strengthen deep abdominal and core muscles. Pilates is extremely effective for postural awareness and control, which can prevent and treat back pain. However, at ScoliosisPTJax our Pilates instructors also focus on educating clients on ways to apply the techniques taught in Pilates into their everyday life.
Before beginning pilates, it is important to find your ideal spine and pelvic position. Joseph Pilates placed an emphasis on finding the Neutral Spine, which is the most ideal or “perfect” posture for YOUR body. Everybody is unique, and the ideal posture for each person is unique. The philosophy behind this neutral posture is to give your body the most stable position from which to begin stretching and strengthening. The strong focus on the core or deep abdominal muscles during pilates further brings the body into balance and ideal posture.
The following exercises can be done at home with little to no equipment. Pilates is about the mind-body connection. Find a quiet place on the floor and begin by focusing on your breath. Pilates is about the mind-body connection. Close your eyes and scan your body. Relax your head, shoulders, and chest. Bring awareness to your ribs in the front, back, and sides. Feel your chest expand in 360 degrees as your breath. When you perform each of the following exercises focus on where you feel the tension and try to allow it to ease away.
Movement heals and Pilates can help you heal your back. BUT we recommend you talk to a physician or physical therapist before starting any exercise program
This simple but effective exercise gets the deep core muscle switched on and builds strength in the support system of the spine.
Begin on your back with your knees bent and feet flat.
This movement is called a pelvic tilt. Continue this movement with your breath.
The middle of this movement (pelvis not too tucked and not too tilted) is often referred to as your ideal pelvis position.
This movement often follows the pelvic tilt. It encourages more core engagement and movements of the hips from a stable base.
Begin on your back with both legs bent, feet on the floor.
This exercise is often performed after the pelvic tilt. It engages the abdominals to strengthen the core.
Rotation helps to stretch the back muscles This movement also helps to strengthen the oblique muscles on the side of your core to further support the spine.
Keep knees squeezed together (you may want to use a towel under your lower back if you feel any pain keeping your spine in neutral), slowly take the knees over to one side, keeping shoulder blades in contact with the floor.
Repeat the exercise 3-5 times to each side, alternating sides.
You should try and hold the stretch position for 10-15 seconds so that your body can really get into the stretch.
Breathe out pulling your navel into your spine and drag the knees back to the center.
Hold 30 seconds then repeat the other leg.