Recently, I posted about pain and my personal experience with it — specifically, low back pain. I told you how Pilates gave me the release I needed and the strength to allow me to heal. The first step in healing is understanding your body wants to feel good! You just need to show it how to transition from a bad cycle to a good cycle.
cycles (noun): a set of events or actions that happen again and again in the same order: a repeating series of events or actions
We can all relate to cycles, good and bad. Often, chronic pain creates “bad cycles.” You feel pain ,which very often causes inefficient movement (such as limping or a posture you develop due to the pain), so you stop moving. The lack of movement makes it more inefficient, which in turn causes more pain. So the cycle continues.
I discovered very quickly that Pilates is a powerful “mind/body” experience that works muscle systems rather than a specific muscle. To some, those systems can sound very complicated when presented through an anatomy standpoint. When someone is in pain, the last thing on their mind is an anatomy lesson — they just want the pain to go away. As a professional Pilates/movement educator, I continuously study anatomy so that I may help people facilitate the use of their systems properly. I start slowly and layer movement and support simultaneously. You are being cued to move as well as constantly thinking about what it is you are doing. When you are in control of how you move and why you move in a certain way, the body starts to feel release.
That release will allow you to call on the correct muscles to do the job. When usage of the correct muscles is achieved, they become stronger. With strength comes balance in the form of opposing muscles working and releasing simultaneously. Muscle balance creates efficient movement, often allowing pain to subside. Less pain means easier movement, which allows for more movement, and with more movement comes more strength and balance — the “good cycle."