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  • Authors: Bellafiore, M.; Battaglia, G.; Caramazza, G.; Fantauzzo, V.; Bianco, A.; Palma, A.
  • Publication year: 2012
  • Type: Proceedings (TIPOLOGIA NON ATTIVA)
  • OA Link:


A TRAINING PROTOCOL INTEGRATED OF PILATES- AND YOGA-BASED EXERCISES FOR WOMEN WITH BACK PAIN Bellafiore, M.1,3, Battaglia, G.1,3, Caramazza, G.2,3, Fantauzzo, V.1, Bianco, A.1,3, Palma, A.1, 3. 1: DISMOT (Palermo, Italy), 2: PhD in “Human Diet and Nutrition” (Palermo, Italy), 3: Regional Sport School of Sicily CONI (Olympic National Italian Committee, Italy). Introduction Pilates and Yoga are bodymind activities recently become very popular in Italian fitness gyms. Their outcomes have been studied separately and it has been reported that both reduce low back pain affecting either the physiological and mental aspects (Posadzki et al., 2011; Tilbrook et al., 2011). However, few evidences are present in the scientific literature. The aims of our study were to test the influence of a training protocol including exercises of Pilates Matwork and Yoga Poses on several fitness parameters as muscle strength and spine flexibility in women with back pain; and whether improvements in these factors were associated with a decrease in symptom frequency. Methods Twenty one women (age: 37.8 ± 8.2 years; weight: 60.1 ± 7.4 kg; height: 163 ± 6 cm; BMI: 22.4 ± 3.2) were recruited to participate in a 8-month training protocol for 1 hour 3 times per week under the guide of the same instructor for all length of training period. This protocol consisted of an initial step of 10 min aimed at activating the muscles involved in the central step of training (35 min), which included Pilates mat exercises (Marmaid, Hundred, Swimming, Spine twist, ecc.), followed by a final step of 15 min of Yoga Poses. The exercise difficulty, the number of sets and repetitions gradually increased during the training period. Before, during (4 months) and after 8 months of exercise training, fitness tests were performed (sit and reach test, trunk lift, sit up, push up, squat). We used the visual rating scale (VRS) to select participants with a frequency of low back pain ranging from ‘occasionally’ to ‘always’. One-way ANOVA test with Bonferroni’s correction and Chi-squared test were used to analyze significant differences (p<0.05). Results After 4 and 8 months of the training period, we found a significant improvement in the low back and hamstring flexibility; abdomen, upper- and lower-body strength (p<0.001). These changes were associated with a bigger number of participants who showed a significant reduction of low back pain frequency (p<0.05). Discussion The training protocol integrated of Pilates- and Yoga-based exercises appears to be practicable, safe and repeatable for long time by women with back pain. Muscle isometric contractions and stretching induced by Pilates and Yoga methods can reduce the onset of low back pain in women. References Posadzki P, Lizis P, Hagner-Derengowska M. (2011). Complement Ther Clin Pract, 17, 85-9. Tilbrook HE, Cox H, Hewitt CE, Kang’ombe AR, Chuang LH, Jayakody S, Aplin JD, Semlyen A, Trewhela A, Watt I, Torgerson DJ. (2011). Ann Intern Med, 155, 569-78.