Frequently Asked Questions
Hello, and welcome to our Frequently Asked Questions page.
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What is Specialist Pilates?
Specialist Pilates is designed and produced by Specialist Chartered Physiotherapists with many years of clinical experience, Masters in advanced Physiotherapy and Rehabilitation to ensure you exercise safely and correctly. Specialist Physiotherapists will guide you through the videos so you can concentrate on performing your exercises in the comfort of your own home or whilst travelling.
What is the difference between traditional Pilates and Specialist Pilates Online?
Our Specialist Pilates Online classes are designed and led by highly specialist Physiotherapists. We have specifically designed routines for a wide range of conditions, sport specific classes and for a range of fitness levels and ages. We recognise that one size doesn’t fit all needs, so we have designed classes for different needs and produced information guides as support.
What are the benefits to practicing Pilates?
Pilates has numerous benefits. Pilates is an effective conditioning form of exercise that combines flexibility, strength, balance, stability, and coordination, endurance and posture re-education exercises with breathing control. These elements combine to challenge the body to improve posture and functional movements in various positions, leading to improved joint mobility and control. The core (trunk) is made up of the diaphragm, abdominals (rectus abdominus, transversus abdominus and obliques), spinal muscles and pelvic floor muscles and all these muscle groups are worked in Pilates.
Is Specialist Pilates Online a replacement for attending classes in person?
Specialist Pilates Online has been developed and designed as a resource to help people access Physiotherapy led exercise videos in the comfort of their own home or wherever is convenient to them, away on holiday or at work, safe in the knowledge that they have been designed with medical conditions, injuries and sport specific elements in mind.
Purpose of the Specialist Pilates Online classes
Is Pilates just for Women?
Pilates is also extremely important for men to do as well. Both men and women will experience painful injuries at some point in their life, or suffer with a joint specific or sporting complaint. Pilates is also a good way of looking after your body regardless of your age. Pilates has a reputation for attracting a female following to the principles and training effects but everyone can benefit.
Who is Pilates suitable for?
How often do I need to practice Pilates?
Does a Pilates work out ever get easier?
pecialist Pilates online is designed to support you from beginner level to increasingly difficult routines, intermediate, to advanced/ elite levels. The great thing about Pilates is that you will notice routines will start to feel easier with time, or you may notice subtle changes like having better balance on one of your favourite routines, or maybe now you are able to stand on one leg rather than two when doing your exercises. Progress can be measured in many ways, such as how you perform daily tasks, was it easier to do today? Do you feel fitter? Can you stand for longer? Can you now run with less pain? These are all possible functional improvements that come with practising Specialist Pilates regularly. The length of time it takes an individual to improve will depend on numerous factors such as lifestyle and the amount of Pilates practice performed.
What should I wear?
Specialist Pilates Online routines don’t require technical clothing. However, we suggest you wear something that is comfortable that allows you to freely move around in. If you feel the cold, layer up and keep your toes warm with a pair of socks with grips or bare foot is also fine. Gym or active wear is a popular choice.
What are the benefits of using small Pilates equipment?
Equipment can provide additional resistance to add strength, extra challenges to the body or even facilitate movement. It is not essential to have all the equipment we use in our video's and substitutes are suggested in our video's where applicable. You can perform the equipment classes without the specified equipment or use substitutes found around your home, such as tins of beans or bottles of water as hand weights for example.
I have never done Pilates before, can I sign up?
Yes. We recommend you watch the 'Specialist Pilates: Key Elements' video and the 'Pelvic Floor (beginner)' video before you start. Start with beginner level exercises within the category of your choice and you can get started!
I have tried other Pilates classes and other exercise programmes before and my symptoms got worse, is it safe to try these exercises?
Yes, our videos have been made by Specialist Physiotherapists with specific injuries or conditions in mind so they are safe to perform. If symptoms still continue to feel worse, keep to 'beginner' level exercises only and we also advise you speak to your registered GP about your symptoms to have them checked if they persist.
Do I need to have been to one of your classes to be able to do the online classes?
No, you do not need to have been to see us for an assessment or one of our classes in clinic to enjoy the benefits of Specialist Pilates online. Many of our customers are worldwide.
I am under a GP or Consultant, am I allowed to start these exercises?
If you are under a GP or Consultant for any treatment or investigations, always seek their permission before continuing with any exercise based classes. In most instances, Consultants and GP's will fully support a Physiotherapist-led exercise programme based on the benefits and evidence supporting prehabilitation and rehabilitation but it is best to check with them first and show them what you would like to do.
I am enjoying the online classes; can I join a class in person?
Yes, we are based in Bury St. Edmunds (Suffolk) and we offer a range of Pilates class times, days and types of classes such as mat based and reformer classes. For further information about our classes and availability please contact us using the ‘contact us’ section.
Will Pilates help my flexibility?
I have a question about my condition, can you help?
We have provided information guides that can be downloaded from our website on the homepage under the categories and condition lists with further information. If your question is not answered here, you can contact us by using the ‘contact us’ section of the website.
Can I practice Pilates if I'm pregnant?
How do I sign up?
How do I know where to start?
How can I search for videos I want to find?
Can I select videos by Physiotherapist?
Yes, if you have a preferred Physiotherapist, you can find their videos by entering the Physiotherapists name in the search bar within the video feature on the website.
Can I rent video?
Yes, you can rent individual videos for £2.99 for up to 48 hours
If I am fit and healthy with no medical conditions, which Channel is best suited for me?
How do I know if a video is suitable for me, or covers what I need?
What videos do I follow if I have more than one medical condition?
If you have more than one medical condition, or you have conditions that come under two or more categories, for example, if you have low back pain, but you also have arthritic joints. We suggest you start with the beginner back pain exercises first to settle your most acute symptoms first, and then start on the video's in the Orthopaedic or Seniors category as maintenance or address any underlying problems. If you are unsure of what video's to follow, use our information guides to help you or refer to our condition specific frequently asked questions sections for help.
How long should I carry on doing these exercises?
Our professional advice is that we recommend that you continue doing a Physio-led Pilates programme lifelong to maintain a healthy lifestyle, prevent recurrence of injuries and to remain strong, healthy and pain free. In terms of progressing your exercises, if you feel the exercises have become too easy, we have a range of ability level exercises to try or alternatively move on to our Specialist Pilates online small equipment videos to further challenge you. We regularly update our library with new content and you can be notified of when new videos are added if you sign up to the mailing list on the main page of our website.
Are the videos supported on any device?
yes, our website and videos are compatible with most devices out there. If you are using a computer or mobile devices and you happen to experience any problems, always ensure that your are using the most up to date online browsers as Google Chrome, Safari or Firefox to ensure you get the best experience and check your internet speeds. You can also connect your laptop via an HDMI cable to your TV to watch your videos if you wish to.
How do I renew my subscription?
How do I cancel my subscription?
Can I cancel my subscription at any time?
Yes there are no contracts. You can cancel your subscription anytime.
I have another question? How do I contact you?
You can contact us by email using the ‘contact us’ section of the website. Once you have submitted your question, one of our Chartered Specialist Physiotherapists will get back to you as soon as possible.
Hypermobility and Autoimmune Conditions
Can I do the Specialist Pilates Online videos if I have hypermobility?
Yes. As Specialist Physiotherapists we highly recommended that if you have hypermobility you train your body to keep control of the extra flexibility and movement in the body, particularly at the joints affected. Individuals with hypermobility can experience higher pain levels generally and this can often be interpreted as a reason to stop or avoid certain movements. By reducing the amount joints are over stretched (typically, hyperextension or hyperflexion), the joint health will be preserved. Working on control of the movement will enable muscles to support the joints during movement.
I have just been diagnosed with cancer, can I do any exercise?
Yes. You may have been given a lot of information to consider and digest, but wherever possible try to remain as physically active to help you through. Evidence strongly supports the importance of exercise in maintaining strength flexibility and mobility as a form of treatment to help get people through treatments or surgery with fewer side effects and complications. Our Specialist Pilates Online programmes have been specifically designed by our Cancer Rehabilitation Physiotherapy experts to guide you through our range of prescriptive exercises.
I am starting my chemotherapy/radiotherapy treatment, is exercise ok?
Yes. You may find that you experience changes and fluctuations in your levels of fatigue and other side effects such as nausea and joint discomfort during treatment. This is common and is often cyclical depending on your type, frequency and length of any treatments. On your better days or weeks, you could choose a longer routine to perform (e.g 20 minute class) and aim to perform a class 2-3 times a week. On less energetic days, the 5 or 10-minute Specialist Pilates routines will help with movement without overdoing it.
I am part way through chemotherapy and I struggle with energy, what can I do?
Chemotherapy treatment affects individuals very differently, even if people have similar treatment plans. Cancer related fatigue is very common but not necessarily eased with sleep. Exercise has been shown to alleviate intense fatigue and help manage symptoms. Try some shorter (5-10 minute) programmes and dip into bite size routines as you can manage.
I have peripheral neuropathy symptoms, how will Specialist Pilates help?
Peripheral neuropathy is a frequently reported side effect of chemotherapy which is experienced to varying levels that can impact on the function of your hands and feet. Our Specialist Pilates online programmes have been designed by our experts alongside the latest evidence in exercise medicine to help manage peripheral neuropathy symptoms by working on endurance and balance.
I am due to have abdominal/breast/other surgery, what can I do to become more conditioned to help recovery?
Prehabilitation is important for any surgery. Our Specialist Pilates online programmes have been expertly designed by our Cancer Rehabilitation Physiotherapists to allow you to help prepare your body for surgery, as well as post-operative rehabilitation. Evidence supports the benefits of being as fit as you can be prior to surgery to reduce the length of your hospital stay, reduce your risk of any post-operative complications and help improve your overall recovery and reduce longer term issues.
I have had my surgery, am I safe to exercise?
Always speak to your surgeon first to discuss a safe timescale to resume activity and to ensure it is safe to exercise, especially if you experienced any complications from surgery in case your discharge plan has changed. Always ensure your surgical site is well maintained with no active signs of infection, bleeding or weeping that would prevent you from exercising safely and that you feel well enough to start. If you have an active local or systemic (whole body) infection, it is better to rest and recover before trying to do too much exercise.
My treatment has finished, what do I do now?
I have had repeated injuries, is Specialist Pilates Online likely to help?
Our Specialist Pilates Online sport-specific category has been uniquely designed to combine pilates principles with controlled movements required for your respective sport.
I have herniated discs in my back. Can I do Pilates and is it good for/safe for my back?
I have recently had surgery. Am I able to start/resume Pilates?
If you have been discharged by the medical team or inpatient physiotherapist, you are likely to have been given some guidance of exercises to continue at home or advised when you can commence exercise again. If not, our Specialist Pilates Online Spinal routines will provide you with this starting point, especially if you select our ‘beginner’ level exercises and progress from there.