A Healthy Spine and Pilates

Quite often my clients’ first experience of Pilates is due to a recommendation from a doctor or physician as a good form of exercise for the spine. But why is Pilates so often recommended?

Here’s why – Pilates is a form of exercise that aims to work the whole body creating a balance between strength and flexibility. It’s not about having the longest hamstrings and being able to reach your toes (as I often comment, do longer hamstrings make you a better person?!) it’s about ensuring that you have the mobility to function.

Every Pilates class that I teach we work through the four spinal planes of movement.

1. Flexion (when your spine moves forward)
2. Extension (when your spine moves backwards)
3. Rotation (when your spine twists around)
4. Lateral Flexion (side reach)

Practicing every one of these movements will ensure that your spine remains healthy and happy. Quite often, movements like rotation, lateral flexion or even extension are not things that we do in our day-to-day life, especially if you work at a computer – you spend most of the day in flexion. Adding Pilates into your weekly routine will really help you to feel and appear taller and most importantly, to keep your back in great condition.