A Physio’s Guide to starting your Pilates Journey!

 In Pilates

Pilates Journey

Get clear on your goals

Before you start any kind of exercise or rehabilitation journey, you need to start with the end in mind. Here at POGO, we call this a Physio Finish Line! When someone starts their rehabilitation journey here with us at POGO, we start with the finish line in sight and in mind. You need to be clear on whether your goal is to be able to run 10km at Gold Coast Marathon, lift your child without back pain or get back to work. You need to set realistic timelines around these goals and set small goals along the way to prevent you from getting discouraged.

Set realistic timelines around your goals and set small goals along the way to prevent you from getting discouraged. #performbetter @pogophysio Click To Tweet

Don’t compare yourself to others

In a class setting, it is so easy to compare yourself to other people. You can be looking at someone and thinking “wow, I wish I could that that exercise”, or “why can’t I do that exercise yet”. I often see people doing this and need to remind them that they may be on their 3rd class, and the person they are comparing themself to has been working hard at their rehab for 12 months. Also, in the class you may be doing the same, or a similar exercise to someone else, but let me guarantee the reason the two of you are doing the exercise is totally different. One person is strengthening their glutes so they can walk 2km, another person so they can run 100km. As they say, comparison is the thief of joy, so focus on your exercises and your goals and this will help keep you motivated.

Comparison is the thief of joy, so focus on your exercises and your goals and this will help keep you motivated. #performbetter @pogophysio Click To Tweet

Assess your time restrictions

Often people will report they are too busy to do a class. Let’s be honest, most of us a time poor these days! When you put it in the perspective of being able to reach your goal, often you are able to find some time. Here at POGO classes are 45 minutes in length, and we have classes at all different times in the day to be able to try and fit around work schedules. We have people bring their children just so they are able to get their workout in, and I really admire them (and love their kids!)

Do the exercises you need to do, the way you need to do them

As physiotherapists, we are finding that supervised exercise really does give superior results for many people. Many people are compliant with doing their exercises at home or in the gym, and are able to use correct form and push to the required limits. On the other hand, there are many people who do not have the body awareness to know if their form is correct or not. Some people do not have a mirror they can use so they can watch what happens to their posture when they do a certain exercise. They know they needs to do 5 x 60 second holds of their isometric hamstring bridge, but only for 4 sets of 30 seconds. When we give you exercises, we choose the sets and reps for a very specific reason. Strength and endurance gains are made in different ways. Tendon needs different exercises to balance. So when you are in a class where your physiotherapist is watching you, you will definitely do all the repetitions of your exercise with the perfect form.

Remember to breathe

When we are doing an activity and concentrating hard, it is very easy to hold our breath. From a pelvic floor point of view, we don’t love a breath hold because it can put extra pressure downwards on the pelvic floor (this is a general comment and talking more about exercise in general and not heavy 1RM lifts). From a movement point of view, we are meant to breath. Sometimes associating the breath with a certain part of the movement can help you remember, such as exhaling on the effort (the more difficult part of the movement).

Emily Georgopolous (APAM)

Featured in the Top 50 Physical Therapy Blog

Click here to book an appointment with Emily or view our Clinical Pilates timetable here.


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Showing 2 comments
  • marge wong

    i have rotator cuff/birsitis tightening of the muscles.is hanging from a beam/pole safe

    • Brad Beer

      Thanks Maree,

      It depends> be let by your symptoms. Hanging using your shoulders itself not necessarily a concern.

      Regards Brad Beer

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