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Question: I have scoliosis -- is Pilates or yoga better for my condition?

Asked by kam17 5 years ago

7 answers

I have scoliosis -- is Pilates or yoga better for my condition? Other than doing physical therapy and swimming, I am wondering if any other form of exercise will help me keep my spine curvature in check and if so, which is the best?

Treatments:
Yoga, Pilates

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Yogilates1 5 years ago

Definitely Pilates and yoga can both be good forms of exercise for someone with scoliosis. The most important thing is to work with an experienced instructor in a one-on-on setting so they can show you the correct modifications for you and which movements are not appropriate. In both Pilates and yoga, and Yogilates, breathing is an important exercise and can be utilized to help keep your spine curvature in check. One way is to practice uni-lateral breathing. Since scoliosis is a lateral curvature of the spine (usually with a slight twist as well), if you practice breathing into the opposite side it can help bring the other side back in. Deeply breathing this way will also help in maintaining flexibility in the thoracic cage. I would also give you lots of visualizations to help you feel longer and create a sense of space between your vertabrae. Keeping your awareness on your posture and moving with ideal alignment will translate to your muscle memory so that you will stand, sit, and move more efficiently. I sure you will enjoy the practice and your body and spine will thank you for it.
Take care, Jonathan Urla, PMA-CPT

Sources: http://www.yogilates.com
Books: Yoga for Scoliosis, Elena Brower

Other answers (6)

fitday 5 years ago

both are great ,, start with a gentle class first and see how your body feels

ShanPRyoga 5 years ago

Yoga is very beneficial for yoga. Moving the body with care and attentiveness is beneficial to move the spinal fluid between the vertebra in the spine. I would suggest maybe starting out with yoga, loosening the joints and muscles and then incorporate pilates if you'd like to help strengthen the core, helping to improve posture.
In a yoga class, focus on lengthening the spine and pulling the shoulders down and away from the ears, spreading the shoulder blades apart
cat/cow pose should feel nice




Sources: http://www.yogajournal.com/for_teachers/1090?page=4

Alison 5 years ago

As others have said, it depends on your teacher. Mat Pilates isn't as useful as studio work as the latter would give you access to lots of specialised machine-related exercises and more individual attention. We integrate strength (for you, on your weaker areas) and flexibility (again, for you, more on your tighter areas) whereas a lot of yoga classes would just concentrate on stretching (not all, I hasten to add).

Best of luck.

Alison, http://www.abpilates.co.uk

Alison 5 years ago

As others have said, it depends on your teacher. Mat Pilates isn't as useful as studio work as the latter would give you access to lots of specialised machine-related exercises and more individual attention. We integrate strength (for you, on your weaker areas) and flexibility (again, for you, more on your tighter areas) whereas a lot of yoga classes would just concentrate on stretching (not all, I hasten to add).

Best of luck.

Alison, http://www.abpilates.co.uk

SandieWilson 5 years ago

Both of the methods you have enquired about can be used to treat both the S shaped and the C shaped Scoliosis. Whilst being a condition of the spine, it is important to try to maintain a balance of the musculature suporting the spine and to prevent the scoliosis deteriorating via a developing muscle imbalance. It is important to find a teacher who can look at your particular needs and who understands the condition. Gyrokinesis and Gyrotonic are also fabulous for this as they work on the functional capacity of the spine in a very three dimensional manner thusworking with various combinations of spinal motion. In gyrotonic, the pulley tower and Jumping stretch Board are both great. In particular the pulley tower really guides you into the movements and the machine can be adapted to your particular body size. Furthermore, there are specific ways to use the method to help your body open up and stretch and lengthen the over contracted musculature. Swimming is a fabulous form of exercise and it is important to check that you have a good stroke as it is easy to work incorrectly. Try looking at the Shaw method, which is based on Alexander principles. Feldenkrais classes would also be an enjoyable alternative for you. Good Luck, you are young and its great to see you are aware that regular exercise will benefit you and keep the functional capacity of your spine in the best possible health.

movethreesixty 5 years ago

Most important is whether you have 'C' curve scoliosis or 'S' curve scoliosis and is it congenital (born with it) or functional (meaning have you self induced the scoliosis). As both are quite different in terms of exercise modifications. Personally a Corrective Exercise Specialist would be the ultimate therapy for you and would be most beneficial. Scoliosis is an asymmetrical issue which needs to be addressed with asymmetrical exercise. It is vital to train with an experienced trainer / therapist who is very well informed about physiology. Remember that exercises can also be very counter-productive as well, so choose your form of exercise very carefully.
Best of luck

Sources: Claud serjeant - Move Three Sixty - http://www.movethreesixty.com