Pilates for spinal stenosis makes use of this effective and medically-approved exercise method to provide a better quality of life for select patients. Pilates is certainly not a cure for spinal stenosis, nor even an effective treatment. However, Pilates can provide certain distinct benefits that can help stenosis sufferers to live better.
Pilates is just one of the activity-related exercise programs that are commonly recommended for able-bodied spinal stenosis patients. Others include tai chi, swimming and yoga. Since Pilates is easy to learn and requires little to no special equipment, it is an ideal exercise practice for home-based care, as well as for an addendum to traditional physical therapy.
This essay explores the use of Pilates exercises for use by spinal stenosis patients. We will detail the pros and cons of Pilates as an exercise and rehabilitation method.
What is Pilates for Spinal Stenosis?
Pilates was originally designed as a rehabilitation method following the carnage of World War 1. Many soldiers were injured and needed some form of therapy in order to help them recuperate from their physical and psychoemotional trauma. Pilates was invented to strengthen the body without impact or the need for special equipment.
Pilates has evolved considerably over the past 100 years and is now a very diverse exercise practice that focuses on strengthening the core muscles of the body. These are the same muscles which stabilize and support the spine, making Pilates very valuable for some types of spinal stenosis conditions.
Pilates is generally considered very strenuous, but can be modified easily to make it possible for people of all ages and fitness abilities to participate. Most Pilates work used in spinal stenosis patients requires no special apparatus and can be performed easily at home or on the go, making it an ideal self-help method of care that also improves general health and overall wellness. Pilates is certainly a constructive care method.
Spinal and Foraminal Stenosis Pilates Benefits
Pilates helps to strengthen the core muscles of the body and provide support and stabilization of the spine. This can help to minimize progression of some degenerative conditions which might otherwise contribute to spinal or neuroforaminal stenosis.
Pilates is an excellent fitness activity and is great for providing benefits to overall wellness, as well as specific benefits towards reducing blood pressure, preventing diabetes, creating proportionate height and weight and building a capable anatomy.
Pilates can improve flexibility and muscular performance, which translates into better physical functionality in day-to-day life for patients who were previously diminished in their functionality.
Pilates makes an ideal rehabilitation technique following acute back injury or postoperatively following spinal surgery.
Pilates for Spinal Stenosis Limitations and Downsides
Pilates does not do anything to address the underlying causes of spinal stenosis or foraminal stenosis. Pilates also does not specifically work to reduce pain or minimize symptoms of spinal stenosis. In fact, many patients find doing Pilates exercise terribly painful and therefore the system is not optimally suited for all patients.
Pilates should always be learned from a qualified instructor under supervision of a physical therapist or from a physical therapist directly. Some stenosis conditions might contraindicate a person from practicing Pilates, so it is always best to consult your doctor or physical therapist before undertaking any instruction.
If a patient intends to use Pilates as a self-help method of care, they must focus whenever performing their exercises in order to minimize the risk of injury or the possibility of aggravating their spinal condition or symptoms.