What is it that is so important about this condition and how can we support our clients to remain in our classes knowing we are doing the best we can to strengthen their bones, their muscles and not contribute further to the degeneration of this condition?
Well, for me, the most important thing is to STOP ‘forward flexion’. Continuing to add forward flexion to your program for this person could result in the bodies of the vertebrae becoming weaker or worse still, crumbling! Exercises that encourage the spine to extend and lengthen will help to strengthen the deeper muscles of the spine such as Multifus and Rotatores, as well as the superficial muscles like the Erector Spinae Group.
There would be less pressure on the spine if you used the Cat Stretch as an alternative to the Roll Down and remove Abdominal Curling replacing it with Isometric Semi Supine exercises where the head and shoulders remain in contact with the floor, the TVA and Pelvic floor are engaged and the tension is placed on the Core by raising alternating legs instead of raising upper body. A second exercise I would remove would be ‘fixed rotation’ such as Seated Spine Twist due to the risk of compression factures.
It does take a little bit of thought, but once mastered you will feel totally confident about helping clients with Osteoporosis practice Pilates safely and having someone in your class who suffers with Osteoporosis working alongside someone who does not. Chosen correctly, Pilates exercises can be useful in the management of Osteoporosis as the exercises will help to promote good posture and improve strength in the stability muscles of the spine and joints.
In-depth information about Osteoporosis, Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Degenerative Disc Disease, Piriformas Syndrome, Sacroiliac Join Dysfunction, Facet Joint Dysfunction, Spinal Stenosis and many more conditions are covered in our INFITNESS Pilates level 3 diploma. Please contact me directly for further information if this course interests you.