Clinical Pilates Physiotherapy

Clinical Pilates is a form of exercise that combines the principles of Pilates with the expertise of physiotherapists. It is designed to address the specific needs and goals of each individual, whether they are recovering from an injury, managing a chronic condition, or enhancing their fitness and sport performance.

What is Clinical Pilates?

Using mats or equipment such as reformers, physiotherapists can apply their knowledge of injury management and the principle of Pilates to guide their clients to using their muscles in a more optimal way.

At our Newtown Clinic, we have four classes (and growing!) per week and these classes are extremely popular. We call these classes “Core Conditioning” as we integrate functional strength exercises into the Pilates exercises as well. We also run specific “Lumbo-Pelvic-Hip” classes for patients who have had low back and/or hip pain and are returning to exercise and need guidance from our expert physiotherapists.

What conditions can be treated with Clinical Pilates?

Back Pain, Neck Pain, Disc & Joint Injuries

Pain is an unpleasant experience and causes a range of negative consequences. As well as the pain you can feel, one thing we know occurs is that you start to move differently and certain muscles will go tight or spasm and other muscles will go weak. If left long enough, pain can cause significant weakness in important stability muscles of the body. By doing strength work like Pilates, potential weakness can be bypassed and any muscles that are weak can be highlighted and worked on.

Recurring Injuries

In a similar vein, if you have had a recurring injury, for example, a recurring hamstring strain when you play soccer, it might be that your brain has lost the ability to optimally tolerate certain loads (for example, the twisting and sprinting required to play soccer). Strength work like Pilates can help by not only strengthening the area of concern ( the hamstrings) but also the supporting muscles (like the deep core, the gluteals, the quads and the calves).

Post-Operative Recovery

If you have had surgery, especially around the abdomen trunk or spine, these muscles will have likely been surgically cut and will have to heal. During this time, these muscles will not activate. Following surgery such as this, it is very common for weakness in these muscles to be identified. Pilates and strengthening are a safe and effective way to get these muscles going again. 

Pre-and Post-Natal Women

During pregnancy there is the natural stretching of the front and side abdominal walls. There is also a lot of pressure on the pelvic floor. During labour there can be tearing or surgical incision required of the pelvic floor. It is very common for women to feel very weak in their entire trunk after childbirth when they are required to start carrying and breast feeding their new child. Indeed, even tasks such as picking up and putting down the new baby into their bassinet can become very difficult due to trunk weakness. Pilates is a great and safe way to start activating and strengthening trunk muscles post-natal. We also provide pre- and post-natal physiotherapy.

What are the Benefits of Clinical Pilates?

Improve cores strength and body awareness

By practising finding and activating your deep abdominal stabilisers, body awareness is improved. By challenging yourself to be able to stabilise your trunk during lots of different positions and for prolonged periods of time, core strength is improved.


Ease muscle tension and increase flexibility

It is common for global muscles to be tense and inflexible when deep stabilisers are weak. It is believed that the brain mediates this as a way to try to create stability when deep stabilisers are not contracting optimally. By enhancing the function of deep stabilisers, the brain can “let go” of gripping tight muscles.

Correct muscle imbalances by strengthening weak areas and relaxing overused muscles

By letting go of overused gripping muscles, clients doing Pilates find they are more comfortable. By observing you perform Pilates and core exercises, your physiotherapist will be able to determine which muscles are weak and need strengthening. Over time, your body will become more balanced and functional. 

Train correct posture and endurance

Doing Pilates regularly allows your brain to learn where your best posture is – this will be different for different people. By performing exercises over and over again, and by holding certain positions, your muscular endurance improves. 

Strength and Pilates Physiotherapy

When you’re in a good position for stability and your core is supporting your skeletal frame effectively, you’ll find your bigger muscles (e.g. your glutes, quads, lats) can contract and generate power and strength more effectively. Our clients regularly tell us that they feel much stronger all over their body when they have been doing Pilates. They notice when they are lifting weights in the gym that they can lift heavier weights than previously. This has a major effect on their lifestyles and well being.

Discover Pilates for Core Strength

The combination of physiotherapy and Pilates is a very powerful one. By identifying weakness and dysfunction, and then applying a well recognised series of exercises many clients find marked improvements in their core strength. 

Clinical Pilates Newtown

 If you’re feeling stiff, sore or weak maybe check out our Core Conditioning Classes here at Active Physiotherapy. Classes are run by physiotherapists so you can use your private health fund as well.

Classes are limited to 6 participants so you’ll get the attention you need to move better and feel better. Give us a call on 9519 4913 and enquire today. 

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