What is Clinical Pilates?

Clinical Pilates is Pilates let by physiotherapists using traditional Pilates techniques combined with modern day scientific knowledge and research. Clinical Pilates is suitable for all ages from 9-90+ years and all levels of activity. This means no matter your fitness level or your age you can participate in safe and effective exercise.

During your initial Pilates assessment, our physiotherapist will perform a musculoskeletal assessment to identify any postural imbalances, weak or tight muscles, deficiencies from previous injuries, and current issues stemming from most recent injury/condition/surgery. Working with these findings, and with your specific functional goals, the physiotherapist can create a personal program of specific exercises to correct muscle imbalances, improving strength, refining control, and rehabilitate an injury or refine a particular technique.

After your initial assessment, you will participate in at least 3 private clinical Pilates sessions to build awareness and correct technique. If you are ready to progress into a group setting, we offer duets or group classes of 3 to reduce the cost but still provide a setting in which you have plenty of supervision and hands on help from the physiotherapist.


Clinical Pilates is for:

  • Rehabilitation post injury/surgery/pain: we will work with your physio or surgeon to ensure you are reaching your rehab goals with specialised exercise.
  • Pre- and post-natal fitness/rehabilitatio: to assist in improving pelvic floor activation, core and pelvic control. Post doctors approval.
  • Reducing pain associated with postural imbalances: desk workers, body builders, crossfitters.
  • Those with scoliosis: exercise therapy to assist in improving control during postural correction.
  • Seniors who want to improve their balance, and general health using a low-impact but challenging technique.
  • Those with back pain: to improve movement of the spine and increase the core strength.
  • The general population that wants a non-impact way to build strength, endurance, and general fitness.
  • Young athletes that have hypermobility and want to build strength to improve performance.
  • Those with neurological conditions such as Parkinson’s Disease, multiple Sclerosis, or post-neurosurgery. Post doctors approval.


Why do Clinical Pilates?

Desk Workers
Sitting at a desk for 8 hours a day year after year can have a negative impact on your spine. You only have one spine! It is imperative that you start doing some exercises that will help reverse the postures that you are in all day. Pilates will help you move your spine in directions opposite to your usual sitting posture. The discs in your spine are nourished by movement. Your body is an investment and it’s important to maintain it with tailored exercise to address your postural muscles.

If your Scoliosis is <30 degrees, studies have shown that exercise can assist in preventing further progression. Scoliosis doesn’t only effect the younger population, we can also get scoliosis later in life after having an injury to our spines that causes slow changes in the curve of our backs. Placing a spine in a brace or having surgery to correct the spinal curve doesn’t address the muscular imbalance that accompanies scoliosis. Clinical Pilates uses several pieces of equipment that, in a tailored approach of elongation and strengthening in corrective postures, can assist in those with Scoliosis. Please bring reports of scans indicating your Cobb angle or x-ray of your spine if no Cobb angle is given.

Building Performance
Peak performance require a strong and well balanced body. Pilates has often been used with elite athletes to address muscle imbalances, core strength, and coordination. The use of the Pilates equipment allows the physiotherapist to adjust the resistance, speed, and difficulty of an exercise to match the performance goals of the athlete. From triathletes, to bodybuilders, to dancers, clinical Pilates is so unique that even high-level athletes find it surprisingly challenging.

Preparation for Surgery “Pre-hab” for Joint Replacements
Most surgeons recommend you do low-impact exercises to get your body in its best shape before having orthopaedic surgery. It’s important to check with them before starting an exercise program. Building strength and balance in the areas that are the weakest will help you recover quicker so that you can get back on your feet. Our physiotherapist has worked with orthopaedic patients directly pre- and post-surgery and can help to walk you through the process. If you have any concerns with using crutches we can teach you how to get confident on crutches before even having surgery.

Rehabilitation After Surgery or Injury
After an injury or surgery, it may not be appropriate to go back to the gym to exercise. You may be going to the physiotherapist for therapy but you also want to be able to stay fit without doing more damage. Clinical Pilates is tailored to your goals, and can address any specific recommendations given by your physiotherapist or surgeon. Surgery is just the beginning, it is during Rehabilitation that the magic happens and you start to see how much you can achieve. Our Physiotherapist has worked with those post spinal, ACL recon, arthroscopies, and joint replacement surgery to name a few. Check with your surgeon before starting an exercise program.

Young Athlete Performance
It is important for younger athletes to improve their postural control as they are still growing and it what they do now really matters. Often, the younger athlete can be hypermobile in some areas and stiff in other areas. During the initial assessment, the physiotherapist will identify any postural imbalances which will be addressed during the clinical Pilates session. By addressing postural imbalances, and educating the young athlete on proper posture, you can assist in injury.

Back Pain
Pilates is centered around core activation especially of the deep core and the segmental muscles around the spine which support the spine. Often, those with back pain are experiencing pain due poor movement, reduced lumbo-pelvic stability, and reduced segmental control of their spine. During the initial assessment, the physiotherapist will assess your spinal movement, core control, and any contributing factors to your back pain. Together we will develop a clinical Pilates program to address these factors to assist in reducing your back pain.

Pregnancy or Post-Partum exercise
It’s easy stay on track with your fitness while keeping things safe for your baby in the clinical Pilates setting. We have multiple different pieces of equipment and pregnancy wedges (used prenatally) to ensure that you are able to perform safe, fun, and challenging exercises that are targeting your specific goals found on your initial assessment. Clinical Pilates can help you strengthen your pelvic floor, prepare your body for pregnancy, strengthen your body after giving birth, improve your balance, and help with reducing pain with postures that accompany the entire experience. You must have clearance from your doctor to safely start an exercise program.

Improving General Fitness
Going to the gym can be intimidating or boring for some. Pilates will not only challenge your body but also your mind. Pilates is a great tool to improve general fitness. Doing Pilates can help to build strength, balance, and flexibility in a controlled way. We can adjust the intensity to correlate with your goals developed in the initial assessment.

Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s Disease, or other Neurological Disorders
Our physiotherapist worked with those with Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and those post neurosurgery in both the acute and community settings. After being cleared by your surgeon or doctor, it is important to work with a physiotherapist to start a safe exercise program. As a neurological client, you will receive a neurological, postural, balance, and musculoskeletal assessment. We will also discuss your goals for clinical Pilates and how they will relate to your quality of life and functional goals in daily life.


***Please be aware that we do not have wheelchair access and you will need to be able to do 2 flights of stairs to access the studio. If you are unable to do stairs please email us and we can discuss the options for rehabilitation***

Questions? Email us at pilates@studioakasa.com

Book your clinical Pilates session here.