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Pilates can effectively help prevent NCDs

Published:Wednesday | October 18, 2017 | 12:00 AMSelena DeLeon
Pilates is a method of improving movement efficiency
Pilates is a method of improving movement efficiency
Pilates is a method of improving movement efficiency

Pilates is a method of improving movement efficiency that was originally called 'contrology' in the 1920s, conceptualised by Joseph Pilates. The training is utilised by sports elite and post-surgical clients alike for improvement of posture, improved mobility, flexibility and efficiency of movement.

The too-fast-paced modern world demands a lot from us just to survive, let alone live well. If battling a non-communicable disease (NCD) such as heart disease, cancer or diabetes, this can be even more difficult.

We need an abundance of energy to rise each day with purpose and perform the tasks required of us, but often these tasks are so draining that the body, mind and spirit are left stressed, exhausted, unable to indulge in the pleasurable activities which bring us joy.




Through thoughtful movement, Pilates develops the body uniformly, corrects posture, restores vitality, invigorates the mind and elevates the spirits, in order that we may be in a better position to complete our work with ease and have sufficient vitality in reserve for the things we enjoy in life.

In general, adults reportedly spend 7.7 hours a day in sedentary behaviour, which can be associated with traditional office-oriented work, surfing the Net and watching television. Excessive sitting has been linked with increased risk for all-cause mortality and NCDs, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

For those who suffer chronic illnesses, this poses a greater demand on their physical and mental systems, and increases the need for movement training for mental, neuromuscular and physical benefits. Fundamentals such as core strength, foot, knee and ankle alignment, spinal mobility and length are some of the many by-products of a regular Pilates programme.




Eighty per cent of the population will experience low back pain during their lifetime; 25 per cent will suffer chronic low back pain, with those who suffer from rheumatoid arthritis comprising the majority of this statistic.

Fortunately, movement heals, and movement is at the core of Pilates.

- Doing Pilates regularly can assist people to excel in healthy and improved quality lifestyles.

- As a way of obtaining total control of body and mind, Pilates practises low-impact and intelligent movement.

- Paired with proper diet, sufficient sleep, correct breathing, uniform muscle development, and spinal alignment, Pilates practices can increase lifespan and yield a greater return in energy.

As Joseph Pilates said, "physical fitness is the first requisite of happiness".

Core Fit Pilates understands this is how we thrive, and that through Pilates people can obtain a level of health and happiness that we all desire.

It is our goal to help shape health in Jamaica, keeping in mind the philosophy of Joseph Pilates.

Certified Pilates instructors have extensive training from the American-based Pilates Method Alliance, through centres that hold international standards, and have worked for over 100 hours in the field.

- Selena DeLeon is a certified personal trainer and weight-loss consultant who is proposing pilates as an option for prevention of NCDs. Email: