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Back Pain Relief: Pilates for Back Pain

Not many people know that Joseph Pilates, the man behind Pilates, was extremely unfit and unhealthy himself. He decided he needed to perform exercises that would strengthen his body and core without causing injuries. So, he came up with an exercise (that is primarily meant to heal and is done on a mat) based on movements suggested by his physiotherapist.

Pilates has a dedicated fan following among many A-list Hollywood celebrities. Jennifer Aniston, Miley Cyrus, Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow regulalry use Pilates to get toned and fit.

I believe that fitness is a must for everyone, and what better way than Pilates to get the body leaner and fitter. While studying at The American College of Sports Medicine, I became interested in understanding the various forms of exercise that would help people in India get fitter, as obesity is a growing epidemic in our country. Pilates immediately caught my eye, and I ended up meeting many people in the fitness industry to learn more about its uses and benefits. After hearing the positives, I was convinced this is exactly what Mumbai needed.

The USP and Benefits of Pilates is that if a person cannot exercise due to a back injury then Pilates can help him/her get back on their feet since one can do Pilates while lying on their back. Pilates strengthens your core muscles and helps you get a better posture, which is extremely important if you have a weak back/ spinal cord. With Pilates, you exercise all the muscle groups including the small muscles, which tends to get ignored while weight training.

Pilates is great for people with injuries, weak muscles and particularly bad posture because it encourages you to strengthen your problem areas in a relaxed and low impact way. The principles used in Pilates are some of the same principles used in the rehabilitation of many common orthopaedic problems. So, Pilates is being used in the prevention and rehabilitation of these orthopaedic problems.

Who should try Pilates :

There is no age bar for Pilates as this is the safest form of exercise that we have. It is risk free, and safe, hence recommended for people with weak muscles. Keep in mind that those who are obese will not lose weight by only doing Pilates and they need to supplement it with other forms of exercise.

Do you need other exercises along with Pilates:

Pilates does not give you cardio vascular benefits, it is an addition to your exercise. Pilates is not a weight bearing exercise as it focuses on your core strength-back, abs and hips. Pilates can be practiced 3 times a week. Like any other exercise one has to do a doing a warm up and cooling down before starting Pilates. By doing Pilates one exercises all their muscle groups including the neck muscles. While gymming people tend to bulk up by doing various types of techniques e.g.–using weights, heavy machinery etc. Pilates on the other hand does not tend to give you a bulky look, instead it tones the muscles and gives you a toned physique.

Pilates can be practiced in two ways, one in the gym, which can be practiced on the Reformer. Doing Pilates on the reformer helps to do various types of elongating, lengthening and stretching exercises on the machine. One would also need a specialised trainer to help him/her use this machine, and requires a trained eye to see if the Reformer is being used correctly. Practicing Pilates at home can be done by using a mat, which can be done alone with a trained professional.

Ms. Madhuri Dixit Nene :

Shalini is truly an excellent trainer. She is the perfect combination of tough and soft, She is skilled, thoughtful, sensible, and a pleasure to work with and talk to. She knows just how and when to encourage and when to push, and when to take a step back. Owing to her combination of diverse training methods, individualized exercise programs challenging yet achievable goal setting, a simple to follow diet plan and personal efforts, I am stronger and more flexible, I have better balance and endurance and most importantly, working out has become fun.

Dr. Shri Ram Nene :

Knowledgeable, Competent, Professional and Dedicated are what I would say for Shalini. She is quick in understanding individual goals and hence forth providing advice and varied programs. She uses a holistic approach, incorporating flexibility, strength, posture, balance, endurance along with promoting a healthy eating regime. She is encouraging without being “soft” and a great motivator. Most importantly – she ensures that the moves are done correctly and reinforces how it will benefit . Her professionalism, extensive knowledge and enthusiastic commitment to her work and ultimately her clients, provides the perfect scenario for success and sets foundations for a new healthier lifestyle! Highly recommendable!!!

Dr Dimple Shah :

I joined JG`s gym for ante-natal exercise and probably this was one of the best decision during pregnancy. Anupa, my trainer, exactly knows the regime a pregnant woman needs to follow. Her exercises kept me fresh through the day and my fitness improved post joining the class. She is very attentive and motivated me on days I felt tardy. Her flexibility with timing allowed me to go to gym when I was in comfortable doing exercise - this is a serious plus during pregnancy. Thanks a lot Anupa!

Dr Gitanjali :

JGs is a fantastic gym and work out centre.It`s is not only clean and hygienic , it`s ambience is very inducive for a good workout. The trainers are friendly and very motivating. In addition , there are a variety of group workouts which make it all the more interesting and I`m never bored working out. It`s been 3 years and am still going strong. I have not only attained my desired weight but I have also become physically stronger , energetic and well toned. This has really boosted my self confidence especially when I have to dress up.

Dr. Sanjay Sharma :
Director Asian Cancer InstituteProf. Surgical Oncology Lilavati & Bombay Hospital, Mumbai

JGS is heaven on earth for all fitness lowers and motivates those who desire to do so. This Centre and its management provides such an unbelievable environment which gives so much positive energy & makes you addicted to stay there longer.

It has meaningful, wonderful, newer equipment and above all class very professional, helpful trainers who guide you to do targeted, correct energizing newer exercise regime which no gym that I have visited in India and abroad provides.

I have myself got absolutely fit increasing my lean weight, shedding my flab which I never achieved in previous stints at other places, this in spite of my spending limited time here due to my busy professional schedules, this improved fitness has allowed me to concentrate more on my longer surgeries without getting tired.

I would strongly recommend everyone to stay fit & happy, please join JGS.

Dr. Priti Modi :

10 years and still going strong! My journey has been of a person who prior to 2006 did anything besides exercise to lose weight, to a person who wants to exercise everyday to kickstart a healthier day, for a healthier life. My sister in law, Reshma pushed me to join (thanks to a free 1-month trial coupon) and the JGs team members ensured that it becomes a part of my life. All the trainers are superb at JGs but my major experience has been with Anupa, Shalini, Sangeeta and Vijendra. Shalini has ensured that her dedication to fitness has rubbed off on all her team members. Each one of them is as dedicated and as strict as her in ensuring that we are regular and give our best while exercising. I always share with my family and friends that I just need to reach the gym, after that the trainers ensure I give my best. JGs has also been hugely instrumental in transforming my son, Nihar, from a chubby kid to a 20 year old with 6 pack abs. Thanks Shalini and team JGs, super job, well done, keep it up.

Rohan N Gajjar, Tennis Player :

“Very Good facilities and equipment with expert trainers.Friendly and fun environment to work out in”

Sneha Jaisingh :

I have been regular at JG’S for the past 2 years. Whether it’s the Group X or the gym, they offer something to suit everyone. The energy of the trainers is absolutely infectious. You wouldn’t want to miss a day at the gym because Shalini and the team have a way of getting you addicted to workout and a healthy life.

Sandeep Soparrkar, Choreographer :

'JGS is a gym for complete health & fitness activity. Their friendly trainers guide you at every step and help you fix a healthy goal. I am really happy to be a part of JGS and recommend it to people who are looking for serious fitness'

Gopi Kukde, Advertising Guru :

"A gym is a gym. But JG's is different. It got something that makes people comfortable. More than ten years of my association with JG's says it all!"

Kishori Kukde, Advertising Guru :

" The systematic, rhythmic and thoughtfully designed workout; is what I love about JGs. The atmosphere there is kind of "feel at home". I have been a member of JGs for more than 10 years and even today I have same enthusiasm towards JGs. The credit goes entirely to JGs for it`s 360° wholesome Fitness programs.