Chronic Pain: Improve Your Daily Life with Reformer Pilates

Dec 17, 2018

If you’re someone with a chronic condition, you know that pain is a constant companion. Living with chronic pain makes everyday life difficult. It can affect every single aspect of your life – physically, mentally and socially.

People with musculoskeletal pain such as osteoarthritis, back and neck pain, fractures from bone fragility, injuries and inflammatory conditions are no stranger to this problem. Being in persistent pain can put a limit on their mobility, dexterity and functional ability. The different areas of the body such as the back, neck, shoulder and knee are in constant discomfort, affecting the quality of life.

Reformer Pilates for Chronic Pain

Living with pain robs your ability to work and participate in social roles and your psychological wellness. But that won’t be the case when you start participating in a Reformer Pilates class in Perth!

Reformer Pilates helps improve your flexibility, balance, core strength and stability. Also, it offers a wide range of exercises that can be individualised according to your needs, preferences, condition, age and ability.

A study shows Pilates can improve the daily lives of people with chronic conditions. In the 2018 Musculoskeletal Care, Lynne Gaskell and colleagues explored the experiences and perceptions of adult patients with chronic musculoskeletal conditions who underwent a Pilates exercise programme.

Fifteen women and 7 men with chronic musculoskeletal conditions, including low back pain, peripheral joint osteoarthritis and postsurgical conditions participated in the study. Their age range was from 36 years to 83 years.

Twelve participants underwent a Pilates programme for 12 weeks and 7 participants completed over 12 months of classes. The researchers observed improvements in core strength from exercising with Pilates. The participants had improved flexibility and reduced stiffness when performing their daily activities. Their balance and feelings of well-being and vitality were also improved. Additionally, the participants reported improvements in posture and body shape. Half of them reported less pain, with 3 of them reporting full relief.

The results were organised into 5 main themes:

  1. Physical improvements
  2. Improved performance at work and hobbies
  3. Psychosocial benefits and improved confidence
  4. Increased autonomy in their own condition
  5. Motivation to continue with exercise

In the study, Pilates enabled the participants to function better and manage their condition more effectively and independently. It also provided psychological and social benefits which increase motivation to stick to the program and promote a healthier lifestyle.

Physiotherapy for Extra Benefit

People with a range of musculoskeletal conditions can benefit from Reformer Pilates especially if recommended by physiotherapists to improve function and ensure optimum rehabilitation.

Also, the psychological and social benefits you can get from Reformer Pilates can help keep you motivated to keep you active and have a healthier way of living.

Living with a chronic musculoskeletal condition can be challenging. But keep in mind that the pain you’re living with doesn’t kill you. It is a way of saying that you should seek help – with a Perth physiotherapist. (Because that’s the right thing to do!)

Here at Best Body Physio & Pilates, we’re all ears. Talk to us if you’re in pain or interested in joining a Reformer Pilates class. Book in for a complimentary Pilates Body Assessment. Call us on 9272 7359!



Lynne Gaskell et al, A qualitative study of the experiences and perceptions of adults with chronic musculoskeletal conditions following a 12-week Pilates exercise programme, Musculoskeletal Care (2018). DOI: 10.1002/msc.1365