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Pilates - The Secret of Anti-Aging

Joseph Pilates, the founder of the Pilates exercise programme was the first to highlight physical fitness as the first requisite of happiness. “In order to achieve happiness, it is imperative to gain mastery of your body”, he suggested. “If at the age of 30 you are stiff and out of shape, you are old. If at 60 you are supple and strong then you are young."

Stiffness and poor posture are not the preserve of the elderly. Both can creep into our bodies from our early childhood – but only if we allow them to.  Eventually they make us move more slowly and we feel ‘old before our time’.  Others will notice this before we do. Today, most postural problems are caused by our modern lifestyles. We sit at our computers with inadequate chair support. We spend hours of cramped commuting. We carry too many shopping bags and possibly even more body weight! Add work related stress and lack of exercise…and you have a potent recipe for the rapid deterioration of our youthful postures.

Statistics show that in 2009-2010 about 9.3 million working days were lost as a result of work related musculoskeletal disorders. More than a third of these related to the lower back. (Source: Health and Safety Executive Statistics, 2011). But we can take some preventative action almost immediately to help ourselves. For instance, changes made to our work posture can lead to a noticeable reduction in the incidence of injury and pain. But by far the most effective way to protect your body from musculoskeletal problems and the effects of aging is to improving the strength of the muscles that support the skeleton, especially the spine. This will result in greater stability of the whole body. As a result it will function more efficiently - both in work and at play.