The benefits of clinical pilates

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image=”1809″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]In the last 10 years or so, Clinical Pilates has made its way into the lives of thousands of people, from those who want to keep fit or begin a safe fitness regime, to those who have undergone surgery or who are undertaking rehabilitation to best manage their medical conditions or injuries.

Clinical Pilates is a system of safe and effective exercises which meet your specific individual needs, when tailored by your Physiotherapist. It focuses on building strength in your deeper layer of abdominal muscles, your deep supportive spinal muscles and your hip/pelvic musculature. All of which improve your core strength, balance and stability.  Building a strong core foundation will allow your body to function at a higher capacity, improve your posture and reduce the incidence of pain and injury.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1984″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]Clinical Pilates is also used by elite athletes of all disciplines, including dancers to improve essential movement patterns and enhance fitness and performance, as well as assisting with injury prevention.  By working into your body’s preferred movement, Clinical Pilates improves your mobility, stability, balance, posture and overall function.

Now that we know Clinical Pilates can meet the needs of all individuals, here are some of the main benefits as recognised in the field of research:

  • Tones Muscles
  • Increases bone density
  • Improves your mobility
  • Improves balance reaction times
  • Improves the quality of movement, agility and flexibility
  • Prevents injury
  • Helps to resolve spinal pain or limb pain
  • Improves core stability and pelvic floor function.

[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1978″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]Tones Muscles & Increases bone density

Each exercise is working against the resistance of springs or body weight, thereby stimulating the production of cells to produce more bone in response to the controlled stressed placed on the skeleton.

Improves your mobility

Our walking and physical function are determined by our body’s ability to recruit our muscles in a specific, refined and efficient manner.  When we are reinforcing better muscle recruitment patterns, our body will be move more efficiently allowing greater mobility when walking, running, swimming or in any physical activity.

Improves the quality of movement, balance, agility and flexibility

There are exercises in Clinical Pilates that have different focuses, while still engaging the core muscles. There are dynamic movements to test and train your reflexes that will translate to improved reaction times, therefore assisting your balance and agility. Other exercises work specific muscle groups to the end of range thereby improving your flexibility. Finally, by controlling the motion, Clinical Pilates can fine tune the muscles to recruit in an optimised pattern.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1980″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]Injury Prevention

Clinical Pilates helps to resolve muscle imbalances that we may have by exercising in a balanced manner, thereby reducing the risk of injury to the body. With better use of core muscles to stabilise the trunk, our limbs have a more stable platform from which to operate and therefore reducing the risk of peripheral injury.

Resolution of Spinal and limb pain

A lot of spinal pain is attributed to the “bracing” or excessive contractions of our spinal muscles, thereby compressing the structures that are injured, inflammed and swollen, thereby causing increased pain. With better control of muscles around the trunk and pelvis and with more normal activation of muscles around these structures, we can eliminate pain from the spine.

Clinical Pilates is also used to rehabilitate the limbs, helping to tone and strengthen and therefore aid in the recovery of pain and injury.

Improved core stability and pelvic floor function

The technique used to engage the core muscles during the movement of Clinical Pilates also engages the pelvic floor muscles. The regular recruitment of these muscles enables them to strengthen.  Each exercise repeatedly targets the contraction of specific muscle groups and therefore tones the muscles that are recruited in the exercises.

In summary, there are many benefits in the use of Clinical Pilates for your body. For more information, speak with your treating Physiotherapist today.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1977″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]About The Author: Sophie is a Physiotherapist from Drysdale in Victoria. She owns and operates the clinic Fresh Start Physiotherapy.

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Tips for Healthy Ageing | Enhance Physiotherapy

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]How to Achieve Healthy Ageing in Just 3 Steps

Healthy ageing is crucial. But with the variety of changes that occur in your body, achieving it can be quite challenging. Well, you’ve been around longer than others, now is not the time to back down from a challenge.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1877″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]But let’s get something straight.

  • Aging doesn’t necessarily mean disability or declining health.
  • It is not true that losing your memory is part of aging.
  • You’re not an old dog that can’t learn new tricks.

All you need to do is cope with the changes that come with old age and live life healthy and happy.

How do you do this exactly?

Tips for Staying Healthy as You Grow Older

Did you know that one way to prevent loss of mobility and prevent musculoskeletal injuries is to get active? Exercise is just one option, so you don’t need to sweat at the thought of subjecting your tired bones to physically taxing activities.

Greater physical and mental improvements will boost your vitality, prevent aches and pains, sharpen your memory, and boost your immune system. So why shy away from physical activities?

Before you exercise

  • Check with your doctor to ensure you are well enough to exercise and help determine which routines are good for you.
  • Choose an activity that you like so you will continue to do it on a daily basis.
  • Remember to start slow and work your way to a more intense exercise.

When exercise is hard, do Pilates

This is similar to yoga but focuses on your body’s core that includes your lower back, abdomen, oblique, and inner and outer thigh. It helps develop strength, muscular endurance, balance, coordination, flexibility, and good posture.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1878″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]Considering that these things are what you need to stay mobile and healthy, practicing Pilates offers a great alternative to exercise.

Switch it up with yoga once in awhile

Slow and easy, with a focus on breathing and proper form, Yoga is one activity seniors can do to get active. Similar to Pilates, it also helps improve balance, boost mood, and sharpen memory. Certain yoga poses are suitable for a specific age. The Chair Pose and Tree Pose, for example, are suitable for people in their 50s, while the Cobbler’s Pose and Warrior 1 are for seniors in their 60s.

  • Eat a healthy diet

A healthy diet is important at any age and should not change when you hair turns grey. What you eat, after all, will dictate how healthy your body is. Because your metabolism will slow down and your sense of taste and smell will change, you may need to adjust the ingredients in your menu to add more high-fibre vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.

You also need to ensure your food not only looks good but tastes good as well. If your appetite is lacking, presentation and taste can make a huge difference.

It would also help if you eat with others. If you live in an aged care facility, mingle with other seniors and make meals a social event.

  • Get lots of shut-eye

It is a fact that sleep problems increase as you age. In fact, many older adults complain about insomnia, frequent waking at night, and daytime sleepiness. If you are experiencing the same thing, you should change your sleeping habits.[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”1879″ img_size=”large” alignment=”center”][vc_column_text]

  • Develop bedtime rituals that can help you wind down. Play soothing music or take a warm bath.
  • Make your bedtime the same time that you feel tired. Even if it seems too early to go to bed, you should adjust accordingly.
  • Increase the level of activities you do during the day, because being too sedentary will result in you not feeling sleepy. For a good night’s sleep, do regular aerobic exercises 3 hours before bedtime.

Most importantly, make sure that your bed is comfortable, your bedroom is cool, quiet, and dark, and you use low-wattage bulbs to naturally boost your melatonin levels.

Physical activities, a healthy diet, and a good night’s sleep are all you need to stay healthy in your old age.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

Turmeric the Golden Spice

[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_column_text]Turmeric the Golden Spice

Growing up in an Indian family, where my grandmother had natural remedies for everything, I always find myself comparing modern medicine to traditional medicines that have been used for thousands of years by our ancestors.

But hang on, don’t get me wrong! I’m not here to tell us all about how traditional medicine is way more natural or modern medicine is based on reliable scientific evidence, while I’m sipping my golden drink at 7 o’clock in the morning!

The Trend & What I’ve Been Exposed To…

Not long ago did this pungent, bitter and yellow powdery spice – Turmeric, catch my attention, as there is so much hype about it everywhere these days!

Traditionally, turmeric is a key spice or ingredient in majority of Indian cooking and grows in abundance in Southeast Asia.

Now when I look back, my grandmother’s Indian dishes never missed out on this golden spice and she used to make me drink a glass of warm turmeric milk every night before bed, as she told me that it was good for inflammation and wound healing. After all, nannas and mammas know best!

And of course, I have seen many Indian weddings, where it is a ceremony in itself that the brides are lathered with turmeric mask for that beautiful bridal glow, a day before their wedding.

The Official Good Side of Gold, Briefly…

So we already know that turmeric has so many health benefits, particularly it’s anti-inflammatory properties, and we also know that there are numerous studies to prove the benefits of this ancient spice. Let’s find out what they are!

Curcumin is the constituent present in turmeric that makes this spice a motive towards research and according to a review article that I found by Gupta et al in 2013, numerous clinical tries have shown the effectiveness of curcumin in treating or reducing symptoms in a lot of human diseases. Out of the extensive list given in the article, the following are a few conditions that I thought are commonly seen in our day-to-day lives and I’m sure would sound familiar to all of us:

  • Osteoarthritis (OA)
  • Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Postoperative inflammation – for example after total knee replacement (TKR)
  • Cardiac conditions – acute coronary syndrome & atherosclerosis
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Recurrent respiratory tract infection
  • Various cancers
  • Skin conditions – psoriasis & vitiligo

All of the studies and clinical trials involved the intake of curcumin, either orally in appropriate dosages alone, in conjunction with other medications or as an ointment for topical use, by the participants. Majority of the participants showed significant reduction in symptoms in all of the above categories and more.

A considerable amount of evidence has been shown to prove that curcumin has the ability to alter the cell signaling processes of a lot of inflammatory mediators, thus reducing the symptoms of all these chronic and inflammatory conditions.

There are still a lot of ongoing clinical trials all around the world that were mentioned in this reading, with more number of test subjects, in order to continue to represent the general population that suffer from these conditions.

The Fun & ‘My Kind of’ Stuff…

Apart from the tablet or capsule forms of turmeric that are available in pharmacies and health food stores, how else can we benefit from turmeric in our daily lives? Through food of course! Ahem ahem…. you’re hearing this from the right person! I’m kidding…

Spice Up Your Kitchen!
There are numerous soup, stir-fry, curry, and etc. recipes on the Internet that has turmeric as one of the ingredients to give that delicious flavor and yellow tinge to anything we cook!

#Whisper: Coffee or café lovers alert! I was told that some cafés now serve turmeric lattes!!! (I should tell my Nan about this, she’ll immediately say – I told you so!)

And, lastly, I’m leaving you with this satisfying creamy cup of golden goodness!

Turmeric Spiced Chai

Serves 2 – 4

Ingredients:

  • ½ to 1 tablespoon of loose Indian black tea leaves
  • 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of milk, almond milk, soy milk or rice milk
  • 5 cardamom pods
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon or 1 cinnamon stick
  • ½ teaspoon of fresh grated ginger
  • Finally, ½ teaspoon of our star ingredient, ground turmeric!

Preparation:

  • Lightly grind cardamom pods in a mortar using a pestle
  • Pour water into a saucepan and bring to the boil
  • Add the black tea leaves and boil for 30 seconds
  • Add all the spices into the tea mix and stir well
  • Add milk, stir well and bring to boil on medium heat until the golden colour is achieved
  • Pour the tea into a cup over a strainer and serve

Notes:
For those who are not big fans of tea, you can omit it from the recipe
If preferred creamier, use either milks instead of water
If any of the spices are too strong, you can reduce them to liking

Now you know what my cup of golden goodness was this morning!
References:

Gupta SC, Patchva S, Aggarwal BB (2012) Therapeutic Roles of Curcumin: Lessons Learnt from Clinical Trials. American Association of Pharmaceutical Sciences 15 (1): 195-218[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/2″][vc_single_image image=”1413″ img_size=”large” style=”vc_box_shadow” onclick=”link_image” css_animation=”fadeIn”][/vc_column][/vc_row]