The Autumn has arrived and everyone is returning to the normal everyday slog after the Summer holidays. The gym routine that was gladly abandoned for the month of August is resumed once again. For some people this may present an opportunity to undertake a new class or exercise group that you have been thinking about for a while. There are countless classes out there offering various ways to get into shape fast or lose weight. Think about what your goals are and how you like to train. Will you still want to go after the novelty of the class wears off? If you like dancing than zumba is a class that you are less likely to drop out of after just a few visits. Spin classes are a great intense workout for the cardiovascular system and the legs. Yoga has many variations, including the intense bikram yoga performed in 40 degree heat! There are more relaxing types of yoga that focus on stretching and breathing and this can be a great way to de-stress. Do some research and ask around to gauge the level of the class and whether it is right for you.
One class that I wish more people took part in is pilates. Pilates classes are great for developing the core muscle groups. Your core is the corset of muscle that surrounds the lumbar and abdominal region that supports the lumbar spine. Without a strong core, the lumber spine does not have the support it needs and it becomes vulnerable to injury. For a lot of people with low back pain, a lack of core strength is a big problem. When the core is strong, the low back is better supported and therefore less prone to developing injuries.
When looking for a class to attend, remember, the smaller the class size the better. You want to have as much individual attention from the instructor as possible. Pilates can be especially beneficial during and after pregnancy and you will often find classes specifically devoted to pre and post pregnancy.
It’s a good idea to see your Osteopath for a check-up before undertaking any new activity
Remember also, if you are undertaking any new exercise to take it easy in the beginning. Stretch always afterwards and if anything hurts, stop!!
Best of luck!
Geoffrey Hogan (M.Ost)