Balancing Act: Prioritizing Self-Care Through Clinical Pilates in a Woman’s Busy World

Balancing Act: Prioritizing Self-Care Through Clinical Pilates in a Woman's Busy World | ProActive Pilates

As women, we lead busy lives! We’re professionals, parents, partners, family, and friends, and sometimes, life can quickly stack up around us. If you’re anything like me, all these responsibilities can sometimes feel overwhelming, leaving you with little time or energy left for self-care.

Self-care is a term that gets thrown around a lot. And while no one is arguing about whether we should be caring for ourselves, the fact of the matter is simple: some days, it’s too hard to make it happen. That’s why it’s so crucial to take a step back, take a good, hard look at your life, and take the time you need to find ways to work self-care into it, in a way that makes sense for you. It’s necessary to undergo the balancing act of taking care of yourself while still having time for everything else you need to do.

I’ve found that one of the best ways to practice self-care in a consistently useful way is through Clinical Pilates. In this quick article, I’ll explain why prioritizing self-care through Clinical Pilates is an ideal routine, even for other busy women who have lots on the go. We’ll cover all of the benefits of this amazing modality of treatment, including a few benefits that you may not have known about! 

Firstly, What is Clinical Pilates?

Pilates is a form of exercise rehabilitation that was first created by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century. Though the form has evolved over the past century, the core philosophy remains the same: practicing a form of exercise that supports the body and mind simultaneously, with an emphasis on control and quality of movement.

Clinical Pilates takes the ideas of traditional Pilates and infuses them with evidence-based techniques borrowed from other types of exercise, including physiotherapy and physical rehab. People turn to Clinical Pilates for all kinds of reasons. In my own practice, I’ve used it to support people as they:

  • Recover from injury, surgery, or chronic pain
  • Enhance core strength to improve posture, reduce back pain, and develop stronger core muscles
  • Improve flexibility and balance for a greater range of motion
  • Support the physical aspect of mental health, reducing stress and improving day-to-day mood

There are two main types of Clinical Pilates. These two approaches have different uses and benefits, but both have the power to become incredible self-care tools for busy women. 

The first type is Mat-Based Clinical Pilates—this approach uses minimal equipment (aside from a mat on the floor), and instead relies on body weight exercises that target core strength, balance, and flexibility. Once you’ve got the hang of Mat-Based Clinical Pilates, these exercises can be practiced virtually anywhere, making them easy to fit into even the busiest of schedules.

The other approach I use is Reformer Clinical Pilates. In this practice, we use a special piece of equipment known as a Reformer, which uses springs to add resistance to Pilates exercises. This results in a more challenging, dynamic workout, making it especially useful for people looking to improve their fitness or quickly rehabilitate their bodies after an injury. 

Clinical Pilates as Self-Care

The word ‘clinical’ implies the idea of medical treatment. The good news at ProActive Pilates, is you are working 1-on-1 with not only a Pilates instructor, but also a physiotherapist with over 27 years of experience. Your issues and concerns as well as posture, strength, and flexibility can all benefit from Clinical Pilates! The beauty of this type of exercise is its versatility—each aspect of Pilates can be adapted, changed, and mixed and matched to fit your specific needs. 

Here are a few ways that Clinical Pilates can fit into a self-care routine for busy women looking to make a change:

Mind-Body Connection

I’ve found that the best kinds of self-care are those that help you reconnect your mind with your body. When we’re physically feeling well, it’s so much easier for our minds to relax, helping us remain open to a life full of good cheer and resilience through its ups and downs. I’ve seen this firsthand working with countless people over the years, particularly with women, who face unique challenges in life. 

Clinical Pilates teaches you awareness and control over your movements, your breathing, and your stability. Whether you consciously realize it or not, improving these things can have a dramatic result on your mood and mental health, especially when it comes to your emotional reactions to tough situations.

Pelvic Floor Strengthening

Another Clinical Pilates benefit is its effect on the pelvic floor. This bouncy, elastic layer of tissue supports your internal organs, holds the weight of your child while pregnant, helps with continence, and stabilizes your hips, pelvis, and spine. 

Clinical Pilates is an amazing way to activate or relax the many muscles surrounding the pelvic floor, making it particularly useful for women who are pregnant or who have recently given birth. It can also be used to help address other female-specific concerns, such as pain during sex, urinary incontinence (stress and/or urge), or general pain in the lower back and hips.

3. Treating Chronic Pain

According to a study from the Krembil Brain Institute, women and girls are disproportionately affected by chronic pain, with more than 50% of chronic pain conditions being more common in women. Clinical Pilates is a proven method of addressing certain types of pain, especially in the spine, hips, and pelvis. 

Clinical Pilates is able to help manage chronic pain in the short term, but it can also solve the problem at the source with enough consistency. If you’ve ever dealt with ongoing pain on top of the (many) other stresses of life as a woman, you know how incredible it would feel to say goodbye to chronic pain. Clinical Pilates helps you feel comfortable in your own skin again, making everything else feel that much easier. 

Fitting Clinical Pilates Into Your Self-Care Routine

As self-care practices go, Clinical Pilates does take a little more time and planning than, say, putting on a facemask and watching a movie. However, as you’ll see within only a handful of sessions, the investment is more than worth the rewards. 

As a long-time practitioner of Clinical Pilates, I’ve been able to witness its transformational effects firsthand. After an assessment to determine your needs, your goals, and your abilities, we get started on addressing strength, mobility, and stability, systematically improving your control and quality of movement as we go. 

In time, you’ll begin to notice a difference in the way you feel. Your body will feel stronger, stabler, and more comfortable. Your mind will feel clearer, as you’ll spend less and less time focusing on pain and stiffness. You’ll start to breathe easier, move with more control, and generally feel better as you tackle everything life throws at you. 

As we progress through your customized Pilates regimen, you’ll begin to learn tips, tricks, and tools that you can apply anywhere, meaning you can keep up with your progress on your own time, as well as here in the ProActive studio.

Are you ready to say goodbye to chronic pain, improve your body’s stability, and start feeling like yourself again? Clinical Pilates has the power to help you achieve all that and more. To learn more about Clinical Pilates and the way it can support busy women like yourself, get in touch with me today!

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