The Importance of Combining Osteopathy with Pilates
Quite often I have clients in class and privately who have some kind of issue with their body. These issues are usually a back injury, neck or knee pain. I have clients who see an osteopath, physiotherapist or a chiropractor as well as coming to Pilates classes, but some choose between the two. I want to look at why seeing both simultaneously can make a bit difference.
So, what does an osteopath do? I asked an osteopath I have visited, Sian Smith at Bridge To Health in West Ealing, to give me some info.
“An osteopath aims to look at the body as a whole, so will often look beyond the ‘trigger’ that caused the presenting complaint and look to find the true underlying cause of the pain – this may be years of poor posture/daily habits, repetitive movements or poor nutrition. The focus is on providing pain relief for the current symptoms as well as reducing the incidence of re-occurrences in the future.”
Sometimes we think our back hurts because there’s something wrong with our back but the cause can be from another area, maybe it is tight glutes or tight upper back muscles, maybe one side of the body is more developed than the other, tight hamstrings, a past injury, there are a host of reasons and the osteopath can find these reasons. Then you will know what you need to work on.
Osteopaths undergo extensive training and have a vast knowledge of the body’s anatomy and medical conditions. They can screen for conditions such as osteoporosis, hypertension and thyroid conditions, and point you in the direction of the right specialist, as well as diagnose the majority of musculo-skeletal problems including sciatica, tennis elbow, repetitive strain injuries and different types of headaches. As a Pilates instructor, most of us aren’t trained in these areas. But having a client who has been assessed by an osteopath and can tell us where needs to be worked on, then we can tailor private sessions towards working on those areas or make sure to give modifications in classes.
You don’t need to wait until you have an injury to see an osteopath. The sedentary ‘desk-based’ posture adopted by the large majority of workers is particularly detrimental to postural health. Various structures become over-strained and weak from regular poor desk posture and an osteopath can help address these symptoms as well as provide postural and ergonomic advice to reduce discomfort. Thereby dealing with issues before they become serious. Prevention is better and more cost effective than treatment.
Pilates can really work to strengthen the parts of the body that needs strengthening, stretch and increase flexibility of tight muscles and equal out the body by developing the weaker side. I love clients who have visited an osteopath and know what needs work, that way I can tailor my sessions and really help them improve their body. The 2 together can really make a difference to your body.
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