What Is Clinical Pilates and What Health Benefits Does It Offer?

What Is Clinical Pilates and What Health Benefits Does It Offer?

A female physiotherapist inspects her patient. Medical check of the arm in a physiotherapy room.

Did you know that Pilates was developed by a man named Joseph Pilates since the 1920s?

It's a practice built around six principles: breath, concentration, centering, control, precision, and flow. When put together, these six principles are meant to help you mentally, physically, and spiritually. It's well-established and trusted, and it's even used by medical professionals in order to help people recover through rehabilitation.

How can clinical Pilates make a difference in your day-to-day, though? Luckily, we're here to help you figure it all out. Read on to learn everything you need to know.

What Is Clinical Pilates?

Before you can focus on clinical Pilates benefits, it's important to understand what it is and how it works.

Clinical Pilates pays special attention to retraining certain movement patterns with better body awareness. The regimen pays particular attention to proper breathing techniques and abdominal control. Its primary focus is on the quality of each movement and body integration.

Clinical Pilates is conducted by a qualified therapist with the appropriate Pilates training. It's typically used for rehabilitation after both surgery and injuries, but it can also help to improve overall health conditions.

What Is Clinical Pilates Used For?

Clinical Pilates can be used for a variety of things, as it's highly effective and wide-ranging. Here are a few of the best things that it can help with.

Injury Rehabilitation

Since it's low impact and can be done slowly, clinical Pilates is ideal for those who are recovering from injuries. The difference between regular Pilates and clinical Pilates is the fact that a licensed professional will be there to make sure every session is done safely and effectively. They'll first assess your injury and provide an individualized series of exercises that caters to your treatment goals.

As you recover and improve your condition, the sessions will begin to progress at an appropriate and effective pace. The exercises will primarily target your hips, shoulders, and ankles in order to strengthen the surrounding muscles to prevent further injury.

Pain Management

If you suffer from chronic pain (especially back or neck pain), Pilates can be a great solution.

Clinical Pilates can be an effective solution to reduce any stiffness or tightness as well as reduce the incidences of the injury reoccurring by targeting and strengthening muscles around your neck, lower back, abdominal muscles, and glutes to take pressure off the spine. It's also very good for improving your posture.

Generally speaking, a lot of aches and pains are due to poor posture, so working to lengthen and strengthen those muscles improves your everyday posture to prevent injury from happening at all.

It's also beneficial to take the stress off your ligaments, working to further reduce your risk of injury by strengthening the surrounding muscles.

Athletic Training and Injury Prevention<

Clinical Pilates is a perfect addition to any athlete's current regime. It can help prevent injuries and also increase agility by improving core stability and working with stabilizing muscles. It helps to improve performance and efficiency in a wide variety of sports.

With the attention that Pilates forces you to pay to your body, it's a lot easier to build mind-body awareness of where certain ligaments are connected to the rest of your body. It also becomes easier to correct their posture and alignment during certain movements.

Help Older Adults Maintain Their Mobility

Strength and balance are the two things we begin to lose as we age, but clinical Pilates is a fantastic way to maintain and improve the overall health and wellness of your body. The sessions can be easily tailored to suit a lot of individual needs in order to meet certain goals, making them perfect for aging adults.

It's designed to be low-intensity and pain-free (as much as possible), making it ideal for those who might not be used to physical activity. Doing it in a clinical environment is the fact that it's taught in a safe and supervised environment, making it very safe for everyone.

Pre and Post-natal Care

This might be one you don't immediately think of, but clinical Pilates can help the body cope well with the stress that comes with pregnancy.

You're working to strengthen your pelvic floor muscle, along with your core, making it a perfect way to reduce pain and also the risk of abdominal muscle separation (diastasis recti).

Post-partum, it can be used to help tone and reshape the belly. It's also useful for helping to recover from tearing or other incontinence issues. Since the regime is low-intensity and milder than most, a lot of pregnant women can do clinical Pilates right up until their due date.

Health Benefits

Not only can clinical Pilates help you heal and rebuild strength, but it also comes with an entire host of health benefits.

Great Core Workout

As Pilates is a practice that's built around core-strengthening exercises, you can expect almost every session to target that area. A common problem that many people face with exercising without a professional trainer is a lack of proper resources. You'll likely be focused on developing a fixed set of muscles while neglecting others.

With clinical Pilates, though, you eliminate this problem altogether. Working with a professional is going to help you realize that you may have been neglecting muscles without realizing it if you do work out.

A lot of movements in Pilates require you to use multiple muscle groups, so you'll be able to target more than one area at a time without feeling the fatigue that comes with regular or high-intensity workouts. You also won't have to focus as much on what you're doing, as you'll have guided help every step of the way.

Develop Often Neglected Muscle Groups

That's not the only neglected muscle group you'll be able to improve, though.

For example, if you run a lot and notice that your glutes don't get utilized, while your quads are taking the brunt of the pressure, starting with clinical Pilates can help you solve this problem while helping to prevent injury along the way. You'll have a much better experience, as you'll be able to use all of your muscles, and you won't have uneven strength throughout your body.

Active Meditation

Pilates of any kind requires you to focus on completing specific movements that require both concentration and awareness, much like meditation. The difference here, though, is that you're not only focusing on your breath. With repeated practice, your body is conditioned to pay specific attention to what it's feeling, and you might even find that you're more aware of acute changes and differences.

That heightened awareness is good to have, as it can help promote the same awareness outside of class. You'll be able to better tell when you might need to rest or take other care of your body. This is immensely helpful for clinical Pilates, as it'll help you know when you might need to let your doctor when something might be wrong.

Better Breathing

Finally, you're going to have an easier time breathing. Tuning into your breath is an essential part of healthy emotional regulation, but it can help in other areas too. You'll also be able to improve your attention span and further help lower pain levels.

As you're working with a clinical Pilates professional, they'll be able to tailor your exercises for you and your needs. You won't have to struggle or worry about worsening your condition.

It is important to remember, though, that this process is a healing one. It might not be the most difficult form of physical therapy, but if you're in pain, don't be afraid to speak up.

Exercises can often be tailored to meet your personal needs, so you won't have to worry about aggravating your injury along the way.

Is Clinical Pilates Right for You?

So, is clinical Pilates the right choice for you? Whether you're recovering from an injury or you're about to undergo surgery, it's worth talking with your doctor if you're curious about using Pilates to aid in your recovery. Attending a session with a trained instructor can help determine which moves are best for you and your pain, and they can help ensure you're performing the most beneficial regimen for your condition

At Pilatique Pilates Studio, you can attend classes to learn, or you can even train to become an instructor with our training courses. Contact us today to receive a complimentary 30-45 minute consultation session.