Pilates and Physical Therapy
What is Pilates-based physical therapy?
The Pilates-based physical therapy combines the therapeutic movements and techniques of classical Pilates with traditional physical therapy treatments to help patients improve strength, flexibility and range of motion. Pilates promotes the strengthening of the internal stabilizing muscles to improve movement and support the joints. It keeps the whole body in mind with an emphasis on alignment and balancing muscular forces around the joints to promote efficiency and pain-free movement. The philosophies of physical therapy and Pilates are so similar that the integration of the two makes perfect sense. Pilates-based physical therapy is based on the principle that movement oriented physical therapy can provide patients with an opportunity to have positive experiences and success with movement, shifting them away from the belief that movement and exercise are painful.
Does a physical therapist need special training to incorporate Pilates into treatment?
Yes, to offer this treatment, the therapist should have completed a thorough Pilates Certification program. While many of the principle and the anatomy and physiology information is the same as physical therapy, Pilates exercises and movements are very specific and need to be carried out exactly for optimum benefit.
What are the benefits of Pilates-based physical therapy?
Patients benefit from the holistic principles of Pilates. By focusing on improving core strength, flexibility and range of motion in the whole body, patients learn that movement does not need to be painful. The added strength throughout the body promotes healing and can lead to injury prevention. The treatment is often seen as more flexible than other physical therapy treatments, as Pilates exercises offer a variety of modifications for different levels of ability. As patients move through the modifications, it is obvious to them that they are getting stronger and more flexible, offering a feeling of success and progress. This feeling often encourages ongoing regular exercise and improved overall health and well-being, long after treatment has been completed.
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