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Pilates for Menopause

by | Apr 28, 2024 | Articles, Pilates for Menopause

Pilates for Menopause? Count me in! 

I became aware of symptoms of my approaching menopause from the age of 45 when hot flushes, heavy periods, palpitations, digestive disturbances, severe sleep disruption and overwhelming fatigue joined me in my life. Over the next few years I set about learning all I could to manage my symptoms and live my life on my terms. Guess what, the answer was under my nose all along, Pilates! 

The benefits of Pilates are well documented; and now research consistently supports activities like Pilates as an effective treatment for Menopause symptoms such as hot flushes, sleep disturbance and anxiety. Pilates also contributes to the prevention and management of long term health conditions associated with the Menopause including osteoporosis. 

I developed my Online Menopause Pilates Programme to combat the plethora of symptoms and lasting health challenges that menopause brings. (Read more about Joseph Pilates and his incredible physical fitness programme.)

Menopause Symptoms 

Did you know that 25% of women will experience severe symptoms prior to and around the time when monthly periods cease or Menopause. But the effects of oestrogen on the body are far reaching and the effects of declining oestrogen levels can be long lasting. The structures and systems which can be affected include our bones, muscles, brain, cardiovascular system and the pelvic organs

Of the 34 possible symptoms the most common complaints are hot flushes, sleep disturbance and fatigue, mood fluctuations and anxiety, memory glitches, digestive issues, muscle and joint pains, urinary incontinence and vaginal dryness.

The obvious physical symptoms of menopause peak for 5-10 years around menopause, but we will live the rest of our lives without oestrogen. On average this is a whopping 32 years living with oestrogen deficiency and the coincident long term health consequences!

Pilates Good for the Heart and Soul, and Waistline!

Pilates has proven effective in reducing the body fat percentage, fat mass, waist-to-hip ratio and blood pressure in different-aged individuals. These benefits, namely the reduction of waist-to-hip ratio and blood pressure, can reduce your chances of illness and death from heart disease and stroke.

If core strengthening is on your to do list then Pilates is for you! Pilates offers the opportunity to improve abdominal tone and thus reduce your waist measurement. One of the added benefits of core strength is stability and improved balance and better balance means reduced likelihood of falls and decreased fracture risk.

Better still Sleep like a Baby!

If, like me, you suffer with Menopause induced insomnia, it can be a really debilitating symptom of menopause. But did you know that movement helps to maintain the body’s homeostasis? This can Improve sleep, lower blood pressure, and deliver all-round better health. Result!

Manage Joint aches and Pains with Pilates

Muscle and joint pains resulting from hormonal fluctuations around menopause often cause women to reduce their levels of activity. Fear of pain is a powerful driver, and our brain’s inbuilt pain avoidance tendencies lead to reduced levels of function, muscle weakness and joint stiffness. Looking for a low intensity exercise alternative which maintains muscle strength, joint range of motion and preserves joint function for a future full of possibilities? Look no further!

Pilates Plank

One of the Best Pilates Exercises for Menopause.

The Swimming Prep – This exercise offers a brilliant combination of activation of the deep stabilisation muscle systems, an opportunity to improve your balance, work the hip shoulder and spinal extensors all of which hold us up against gravity; so great exercise for improved posture. We are also loading the arm bones at common fracture sites of the wrist and neck of the humerus, and finally in positions such as this when activating the deep stabilisation system we incorporate the muscles of the pelvic floor. A win win! But don’t just take my word for it, check out my online menopause Pilates Programme to move more and feel better today.

swimming prep

Listen to Phillipa talk all about my approaches to thrive through and beyond the Menopause on the Menopause Cafe Podcast.

Author: Phillipa Butler Chartered Physiotherapist

Biomechanics-Lower-Body-Myofascia-Diploma-Course-Phillipa-Butler-2
Pilates for Menopause for Massage Therapists and Manual Therapists  - NAT Diploma Course with Precizion 10 CEUs

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Interested to learn Pilates or Yoga?

Join Precizion for regular online Pilates and Yoga classes.  All led by Phillipa Butler, a Chartered Physiotherapist, Clinical Pilates and Women’s Health Expert. One-on-one consultations also available.

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