Bad Back
Recommended for rehab

Bad Back

Back pain is not lethal but it can make your life a misery. However by improving your spinal strength and flexibility, your back pain can be reduced and mobility and function improved. We believe that Pilates can help back pain sufferers, more than other exercise methods, to find pain relief without the need for pain medication.

Equipment based Pilates exercises are progressive, functional and pain free. When performed properly the exercises can be beneficial in the prevention and rehabilitation of back pain. These equipment based sessions are modified for each person and you will progress at your own speed working to your own personalized programme of exercises. You will work in a typical teacher client ratio of 1:4/5, ensuring proper supervision. Proper technique is the key to progress, as any type of exercise performed incorrectly can make a back problem worse.

Joseph Pilates opened his equipment based Pilates studio in New York in 1926. Later he introduced floor based mat work classes for larger groups. Since 1998 our Pilates centre has taught several thousand mat work classes to groups never larger than 12. Generally these larger floor based classes are less suitable for those with back problems, for three main reasons. Firstly the teacher client ratio average is often 1 - 12 or even more, which can mean insufficient supervision for any bad back sufferer in the group. Secondly having to adjust from lying on the floor, to standing, then back to lying on the floor, as is often required in the group floor based classes, can be problematic if you have a bad back. With equipment based Pilates you will not perform any exercises lying on the floor. Lastly, it logically follows that someone with a bad back who is following a specific and personalized programme of Pilates equipment based exercises with a teacher client ratio of 1:4/5, will almost certainly be safer and achieve better results as opposed to performing general exercises, mostly on the floor as part of a large group.

A recent study at Queens University, Ontario, Canada, decided to test whether Pilates exercises were effective in improving the condition of a group of adult patients. All of the adults were suffering with chronic low back pain and they were divided into two groups. One an experimental group and the other a usual care group. The experimental group exercised on Pilates equipment while the second group received the usual care provided to individuals seeking medical help for low back pain through their GP. Post-testing revealed that the Pilates participants had significantly lower levels of pain intensity and functional disability than the usual care group. But perhaps most important of all, the study found that one year later, the Pilates participants had maintained their physical improvements.

If you remain unsure about how the quality of your life can be improved by exercising on Pilates equipment, why not visit our studio and speak directly with some of our clients. Many came to us years ago as chronic back pain sufferers and continue with us to this day, virtually pain free.

If you have have been diagnosed with back problems you should consult your doctor before commencing any exercise programme.

Pilates Convert

Thanks to Pilates I no longer have to live with the permanent ache in my spine. I wish that Pilates had travelled north sooner. - Judith Ingle, Harrogate.

Get in Touch

  • Address:
    Leeds Parkway Hotel
    Otley Road
    Leeds, LS16 8AG
  • Telephone:
    07581 814306
  • Email:

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