Pilates can help relieve lower back pain

Filed under: Pilates News — Susan on April 19, 2017

A recent study conducted by a team from Leeds Beckett University indicates that Pilates can be an effective treatment for lower back pain.

The team was led by Helen Llewellyn from the School of Clinical and Applied Science. During the study, she used her expertise as a Sports Therapist and a Level 3 Pilates instructor to help her team to set up the exercise regime.

Each participant took a supervised Pilates lesson twice a week. During the 10 minute warm up session, trunk musculature exercises were the focus. The rest of the hour was spent learning, and practicing targeted Pilates techniques. This included spine stretches and twists, as well as the single leg stretch.

Llewellyn explained to a university reporter why the research was needed. She said:

“Back pain is the leading cause of long-term sickness and accounts for more than 15 million lost work days a year with an estimated cost of £12.3 billion. By carrying out this research, I am looking at whether a lower cost alternative to traditional therapy should be considered.”

The fact that Pilates moves are increasingly being incorporated into physiotherapy sessions is one of the reasons the team decided to investigate. Enough participants saw a positive effect for the research team to conclude that Pilates could indeed help with lower back pain management.

This conclusion is yet more evidence that exercise helps people with back issues. The evidence that this is the case is so strong that, recently, the American College of Physicians recommended that doctors initially prescribe exercise and heat wraps to those who suffer with lower back pain.

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Charlotte Hopkinson