‘Change Happens Through Movement & Movement Heals’ ~ Joseph Pilates
Physiotherapists are classed as movement specialists as we understand movement and the body in an in-depth way, especially pain and function. Yoga and pilates tailored by a physiotherapist (physio-yoga, physio-pilates) can be safe for many conditions. Both are helpful in rehabilitation & managing and changing pain. They encourage increased self awareness and contribute to maintaining and improving wellbeing.
I have integrated yoga and pilates into evidence based physiotherapy for many years and also ran classes for over 5 years. In 2019 I chose to stop running classes to focus on physiotherapy, coaching and have a little more time to look after myself too. As well as integrating into yoga and pilates into physiotherapy, I offer 1:1 appointments for pilates and yoga, following this if you wish you can book small group sessions with your friends or family.
Yoga and pilates are mindful movement which means you are connected to your whole self, this builds awareness which is the foundation for change. I also integrate Shibashi (Qigong) into yoga and pilates sessions when helpful, this is also mindful movement. Shibashi was loved by a lot of people in the classes, all people feedback it was very calming. Exercise and movement important parts of living well and being able to be independent and do what you love.
Physio-pilates and physio-yoga can help you in lots of ways including as part of managing and changing pain. Pilates and yoga taught by a physiotherapist can improve many aspects of movement including: coordination, balance and fluidity, ease, strength, flexibility and more. Pilates and yoga can also improve performance in sports and hobbies, enhance rehabilitation, encourage healthy ageing, and aid management of some neurological conditions. Pilates and yoga can also improve things like concentration, memory, focus, regulation of the stress response and sleep.
Pilates was developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920’s, his original method was based on 34 matwork exercises. He based his work on the three principles of breath, whole body health and whole body commitment. Pilates aims to exercise the whole body with awareness.
The Australian Physiotherapy & Pilates Institute (APPI), with whom I undertook pilates training, revised the original 34 pilates exercises based on pain, pathology and function to make them safer and suitable for everyone. Pilates focuses on breath and body awareness, core stability, balance, rhythm, precision, integration and flow of movement. Pilates can help all of these, along with flexibility of movement and endurance.
Yoga is an ancient philosophy that was first developed in India, it is often defined as union. Yoga recognises that the mind and body are inextricably interlinked, the oneness of our whole being. Yoga incorporates physical movements (asanas), breath practices (pranayamas), meditation practices and yoga philosophy.
Physiotherapy and yoga are a great union, the two together help to tailor rehabilitation and empower you in improving your health and wellbeing. Empowering you is one of Unity Physiotherapy’s philosophies and it is one of the many reasons I integrate yoga into physiotherapy.