Have you ever considered Pilates for scoliosis relief? I discovered how supportive this type of movement is over a decade ago when I took my first Pilates class, before I became a teacher or created Lindywell!
I was diagnosed with scoliosis in high school. We discovered that I had an S-shaped curve in my mid-chest spine—the upper middle of my back. Although it hasn’t gotten worse in years, I have had a lot of pain in my shoulder, neck and jaw due to my muscles and posture being out of balance from side to side and the TMJ from my jaw being out of alignment. .
Pilates has given me a lot of pain relief (a lot!). Consistent practice of getting back in alignment and rebalancing my body is key to living with this diagnosis with less pain.
If you are struggling with pain or discomfort caused by a bent back, then you have come to the right place. Find out how you can rely on Pilates for scoliosis relief.
Please note that the information provided in this article should not be used to diagnose or treat scoliosis. Always seek the advice of a doctor or other qualified healthcare provider about a medical condition.
What you need to know about scoliosis
Scoliosis is an abnormal rotation and curvature of the spine. It can manifest in the cervical (neck), thoracic (upper back) or lumbar (lower back) region. As I shared earlier, my scoliosis created an S-curve in my spine but fortunately was not severe enough to require surgery or a brace.
Although posture does not cause scoliosis, it can affect the way you stand or move. For example, a few common signs include:
- Uneven hips or shoulders
- A significant curve in the back
- ribs protruding forward
- Swelling in the lumbar region
- Leaning to the side
- walking problem
If you feel pain, numbness, and loss of balance or coordination in your legs, this could also indicate scoliosis.
It is important to note that mild forms of scoliosis are easy to overlook. In fact, some of my previous clients had scoliosis without realizing it. When they did the Roll Down, I noticed that one side of their back was hunched or lifted, indicating that their spine might be bent. Sure enough, they were diagnosed after seeing a doctor.
If you notice any of the signs and symptoms mentioned above, we recommend that you see your doctor. With a diagnosis, you can understand how best to manage pain and find support.
How Pilates Can Relieve Scoliosis Pain
I have been experiencing pain from scoliosis since I was diagnosed in high school. Mild and severe cases of scoliosis can put pressure on the nerves and muscles that connect to your spine. This can be upsetting or disrupt your life. In fact, people with scoliosis are very susceptible to chronic low back pain due to musculoskeletal problems.
Orthopedic treatments, such as braces, can relieve some of that pressure, but another intervention can also assist, in addition to or in some cases, in place of a brace. It is effective, low impact, And Gentle on the body. I’m talking (of course!) about Pilates, the game changer for my diagnosis.
Here are a few ways Pilates can help ease your pain as well as it did for me:
- Pilates uses deliberate and controlled movements to lengthen muscles, bring flexibility to the spine, and stabilize the core. Not only does this promote balance, strength, and flexibility, but a strong, stable core takes pressure off the spine. This can help reduce back pain and increase mobility.
- Muscle stretching also plays a role in reducing scoliosis. Performing an exercise that stretches and stretches your muscles (and fascia) can ease stiffness or compression in the vertebral joints. In turn, this can help relieve acute or chronic stress in your neck, shoulders, back, and pelvis that you may experience.
- Pilates has been shown to gently correct balance and postural alignment problems, which is just one more way to relieve pain and support your body through scoliosis.
I rotate more in one direction than the other, and one shoulder is higher than the other. The rotation and strengthening movements inside Pilates help balance that.
In extreme cases, Pilates can only provide so much pain relief, but if your scoliosis is mild or moderate, then Pilates for scoliosis relief can be a great option. This type of movement can help you build and maintain functional range of motion while reducing pain, tension, and discomfort.
How to do Pilates with Scoliosis
I know what you’re thinking: Now I’m ready to be released. I see, I was there—and some days, I’m still there. That’s why I wanted to share some strategies you can use to get the most out of Pilates for scoliosis whenever you step on your mat.
Remember that doing Pilates once or twice probably won’t give you the relief you expect. Although I still feel some discomfort from time to time, it’s only mild and that’s just because I’m constantly doing Pilates to balance my body and strengthen both sides.
This is why a Lindywell membership can be so powerful. With exercises lasting from 10 to 30 minutes, it will be easier for you to make time for exercise each day. If you’re not a member, sign up for a free 14-day trial and get started with a workout like Align the whole body. If you are already a member log in to boost play in your next workout!
Here are some ways to make your Pilates exercises most effective for pain relief and support for your scoliosis.
Don’t force a painful movement—allow modification.
Move gently through your Pilates session and listen to your own body. We always say this at Lindywell, but it’s even more important to you. If a certain movement causes pain, a joint or muscle group is tight, or you notice restriction in a particular area, be aware of this.
Its your practice. This means I want you to listen to your body and reduce resistance or modify the exercise to make it more comfortable. In most of Lindywell’s exercises, we provide modifications to make this easier for you.
Stay connected to your core.
We always say your core is our core. That’s because connecting to your core is so important, in life and Pilates. This is especially true if you are struggling with back pain or discomfort. This takes pressure off your spine and allows your core to support your body the way it’s supposed to. This also helps you build greater core strength, which will also support your scoliosis off the mat.
Subscribe to our recent podcast episode, Abs, Core, and Pelvic Floor: What you need to know to see progress, to learn more about this area of your body.
Focus on purposeful breathing.
Pilates and breathing exercises are inextricably linked. Each movement can be made more effectively (and in some cases, easier!) when you coordinate with rhythmic breathing. We start most of Lindywell’s workouts with a moment to connect with the body and the breath.
If you can keep this awareness throughout the entire workout, you’ll not only make it more effective, but you’ll also help your body reduce stress and tension even more.
A routine to support your body
Learn how Pilates can help reduce your scoliosis with this restorative exercise. In just 10 minutes, you’ll stretch, practice intentional breathing, and build strength. It’s a perfect example of what you can expect from every Pilates session with Lindywell.
Try Pilates for Scoliosis Relief
If you’re ready to get the full experience, start your free trial of Lindywell today! We have over 250 online Pilates exercises for all fitness levels and experience levels, taught by certified instructors and founded by me, Robin, who has been diagnosed with scoliosis in the past. almost 25 years.
Each routine is built to build strength, increase mobility, restore balance, realign posture, and increase flexibility—usually in just 15 minutes or less. This means you can use Pilates to relieve scoliosis without adding a time-consuming task to your to-do list—win-win!
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