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Clinical Exercise for
Back Pain

Safe & effective exercise to relieve back pain using the APPI physio based approach
in Stevenage, Hitchin and  Baldock

Back pain has been found to be the largest single cause of disability in the UK, with lower back pain alone accounting for 11% of the total UK disability (The National Back Pain Pathway, 2016). If you suffer from back pain you will know how debilitating it can be.

Back pain is on the rise due to our sedentary work and lifestyles and an increased dependency on technology (think about how the spine and neck hunch forward over our tech devices). Couple this with being overweight and we can see how the spine is being put under continual, undue stress.


If you suffer from back pain it is likely someone has told you to try Pilates. And they would be right! Pilates strengthens our core, which is a group of muscles that wrap around our centre like a corset. The core helps to stabilise our torso and pelvis and strengthening it leads to increased stability. 

Pilates can increase our awareness of good posture and healthy movement. When we stand or sit with a tall spine, we create space between each vertebrae, which relieves pressure from the discs. Strengthening our core muscles and lengthening the spine work together to form a stronger, more supple back.

Sometimes back pain isn’t caused by the back at all, but rather from a muscle imbalance in the hips or pelvis. If you tend to lean on one leg while you stand or sit with a leg crossed this may lead to a muscle imbalance which can manifest in back pain. In Pilates we are always looking for muscle imbalances and looking to bring awareness and corrective movements to them. Pilates can help you to align and stabilse the pelvis and legs, leading to less strain on the back muscles.

Another reason we might experience back pain is due to tight hamstrings and /or under active gluteal (butt) muscles. Driving or sitting at a desk can lead to tight hamstring muscles and weak gluteal muscles. This tightness can pull the pelvis and lower back into an unwanted anterior tilt. Likewise, hunching over our phones and desktop computers creates a kyphotic (rounded forward) posture. Pilates exercises emphasize the “neutral spine,” an ideal posture that respects the natural, healthy curves of the lower, mid and upper back.


Can Pilates Alleviate Back Pain?

Gentle Pilates movements can help alleviate discomfort in the back. Alway check with your GP or healthcare professional before starting a programme of exercise, as there may be certain moves you need to avoid. Once cleared, I would suggest you try a 1-2-1 Pilates session to learn some of the more technical sides of Pilates and allow you to explore which moves work well for your body.  From there, you might want to move on to do either an APPI physio-approach to Pilates mat class, or continue with 1-2-1 mat or reformer classes. 

Remember that Movement is Medicine!  Why not take advantage of this introductory offer and start on your path to moving free from back pain.

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