“Pilates exercises focus not only on physical but also on psychological development, and mind-body interaction is the main principal of the method,” lead author Dr. Fidel Hita-Contreras of the University of Jaen in Spain said by email.
Millions of people worldwide suffer from lower back pain at some point in their lives, and the risk increases with age. Symptoms can range from a dull, constant ache to a sudden sharp pain that makes it difficult to move.
Fear of falling is a major health problem among the elderly, associated not only with actual risk of falling but also with less physical activity, avoidance of daily activities, and lower quality of life, Hita-Contreras and colleagues note in the journal Maturitas.
Pilates uses a series of controlled movements to improve core strength, posture and balance. The exercises concentrate on strengthening muscles in the lower and upper back, hips, buttocks and inner thighs.