Pilates & Osteoporosis
By Sofiana Kanta 2005
By Sofiana Kanta 2005
Metabolic bone degeneration (osteoporosis) affects millions of people and is directly responsible for debilitating hip, vertebral and limb fractures in the elderly. The magnitude of the osteoporosis problem has been realized in recent years, and the value of early detection and therapeutic intervention has become clear. Osteoporosis is most common in women after menopause, when it is called postmenopausal osteoporosis, but may also develop in men, and may occur in anyone in the presence of particular hormonal disorders and other chronic diseases.
Osteoporosis is a disease in which bones become fragile and more likely to break. If not prevented or if left untreated, osteoporosis can progress painlessly until a bone breaks.
Obviously, the main objective of rehabilitation is to prevent fractures rather than to treat the complications. Therefore, health experts find regular exercise is highly important and necessary for the prevention of osteoporosis, as it builds muscle, endurance, correct posture and can reduce the chronic pain syndrome and decrease depression.
Pilates training is one of the most adequate exercise methods to prevent osteoporosis, as it provides a specific training routine to address the muscle strength, balance, flexibility and postural improvement.
In particular, pilates training may substantially contribute to:
1. Develop increased abdominal and back extensor strength as well as spinal articulation to prevent or diminish the kyphotic postural change which is the most physically disfiguring and psychologically damaging affect of osteoporosis.
2. Exercises with weight- bearing and resistance which exerts positive influence on bone mass , as studies have shown that resistance exercise increases bone density and reduces the risk of fractures.
3. Flexibility through stretches which is very important as having flexible joints helps prevent injury.
4. Improving balance and co-ordination, for improving the ability to carry out daily tasks and activities.
5. Build the bones in the vulnerable areas of the spinal vertebrae and Hip (neck of femur).
6. Prevent Fractures especially in the spinal vertebral bodies.
7. Improve Joint Function and decrease the pain related to osteoarthritis as well.
8. Increasing the sense of well- being, through breathing.
9. Relieving or lessening pain.