Clinical Pilates is specific pilates exercises prescribed to a patient depending on their individual needs (Wajswelner, Metcalf & Bennell, 2012). The practitioner will assess the patient’s problem and will prescribe exercises to carry out on the pilates reformer that will assist in strengthening weak muscles, stretching tight muscles, improving motor control/incorrect patterning and movement problems, as well as any other goals that the client may have. Other goals clients generally have are are toning, weight control and or weight loss, etc (Wajswelner, Metcalf & Bennell, 2012).
Many pathology’s (shoulder pain/back pain/knee pain/hip pain) and movement problems can be greatly improved and often completely removed with clinical reformer based pilates training. Usually clinical pilates classes are not over crowded as all clients are doing their own program and the therapist must be able to give feedback often to clients to make sure they are carrying out the exercises with precision. It is very important that the exercises are carried out correctly and they the client can feel the correct muscles working as usually it is often the patterning that is what is causing the pathology in the first place.
Therefore, close attention must be paid by the pilates clinician. Often when you begin pilates training the clinician will recommend how many session a week would be most beneficial. Generally, you will see results more quickly the more you do it, nevertheless once a week you will still see/feel benefits. When beginning pilates give yourself a minimum or 8-12 weeks to see strengthen gains, improved movement and a big difference in pain. If you have a particular pathology, muscle or joint pain, know that you’re moving incorrectly or just would like to lose or maintain a certain body weight or shape then be sure to ask a clinical pilates instructor for a full assessment and chat about your goals.
APAM, Bachelors PhEd
Wajswelner, H., Metcalf, B., & Bennell, K. (2012). Clinical Pilates versus general exercise for chronic low back pain: randomized trial. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 44(7), 1197-205.