Why Reformer Pilates Helps Injury Prevention and Recovery

Why Reformer Pilates Helps Injury Prevention and Recovery

Reformer Pilates can help strengthen your muscles, improve your flexibility, and add mindfulness to your every day, but it’s also an often recommended routine for individuals who are recovering from injuries, as well as those who are looking to prevent injury through fitness. The practice was first developed by Joseph Pilates to help WWI veterans recover from their injuries, then the fitness philosophy was brought to New York to help dancers with rehabilitation and conditioning. The foundation of Pilates is built on the very idea of using movement to heal — and we’re continuing the tradition today by making it even easier to access Reformer Pilates in the comfort of your own home.

Whether you’re an athlete who regularly engages in intense physical activity and sports, or someone who simply wants to approach each day feeling confident in their own strength, Pilates can help you work on balance, core stability, and flexibility. Each of these elements work together to prevent injury while the specific movements involved in a Pilates workout target injury-prone areas, like the hips. 

But the injury-prevention benefits don’t stop with the muscles. The mind-body connection you gain through Pilates aids in being more aware of how your body reacts to movement, which helps you put healthy boundaries into place. The more you understand when you’re pushing your body too far, the less likely you are to hurt it.

Want to give your body every possible advantage for staying strong and injury-free? Here’s how to benefit from the low-impact, strengthening workout you get with Pilates, especially the Pilates Reformer

How Pilates Helps Maintain Joint Health

A Pilates Reformer is designed to avoid stressing your joints, letting you strengthen your muscles through low-impact movement that is performed with the assistance of springs and straps. You gradually increase the weight as you become stronger, but you are always supported. The exercises focus on stabilizing your core and improving mobility, which, in turn, takes the pressure off of your joints as it becomes stronger and more balanced. 

Pilates is also easier on the ligaments and cartilage than other exercises. As you age, you lose fluid around your joints. By continuing to move through a gentle, yet challenging routine, like Pilates, you increase blood flow to your joints, ligaments, and cartilage. This keeps them moving smoothly and with less pain. Doctors and physical therapists often recommend Pilates to those who suffer from arthritis to keep their joints lubricated and moving, but it’s even more beneficial to start a Reformer Pilates routine before issues arise.

Pilates Exercises to Prevent Common Workout Injuries

FRAME has an extensive library of new exercises to help you work on your stability, flexibility, mobility, and strength to prevent workout injuries. Here are two quick routines you can start with today.

5 Hip Mobility Exercises

Working on hip mobility can prevent injuries for everyone from professional athletes to those who are totally new to a fitness routine. The simple mat Pilates moves below can help strengthen and stretch your hips while also working on mobility. Follow along as Frame Instructor, Jess, guides you through these impactful, easy moves in this short video.



  • Windshield wipers
  • Hip CARs
  • Adductor/hip stretch
  • Active hip flexor & hamstring stretch
  • Leg swings

10-Minute Ab Routine

This 10-minute ab workout led by Frame’s Founder, Melissa, strengthens your core while also improving posture, mobility, flexibility, and balance. A strong core makes it easier on your body to lift weights, play sports, and even run. It improves joint health and stabilizes your spine and pelvis, which provides protection against injuries and lessens your risk of strains and sprains.

  • High plank to 90-degree angle knees
  • Modified plank to push out
  • Side plank pulses
  • Modified plank to hip pikes
  • Sit-ups
  • Side plank pulses
  • High plank to pike

How to Develop an Injury Prevention Pilates Routine

The best way to develop an injury prevention Pilates routine is simply to start. It can be a few low-impact moves everyday (like the ones above!). 10 minutes is all you need to get your body moving and start increasing flexibility and mobility in your joints. 

The critical piece is consistency, particularly when you’re focused on strengthening your core and gradually improving your flexibility. With each day, you’ll find yourself feeling stronger and more confident in your body, as well as less susceptible to everyday injuries.

FRAME Founder Melissa Bentivoglio explains, “Poor core stability puts you at an increased propensity for injury and can make exercising or performing everyday functions painful. If for example, you bend down to pick something up and experience pain, like an electric shock in your lower lumbar then you’re not engaging your core properly and need stronger core stability.”

By putting a routine into place, even if it’s only a few moves or a few minutes, you’re already on your way to recovering from existing injuries and preventing future ones from occurring. 

How to Listen to Your Body to Prevent Overuse Injuries

Celebrities have been using Pilates to help them tune into their bodies and limit or recover from injuries for decades. Actress Katheen Turner told The New York Times, “Pilates saved my life, baby!,” after undergoing rheumatoid arthritis-related operations in the 90s. Jane Seymour and Madonna are also post-injury fans of Pilates, crediting the exercise with helping them recover from back surgery and horse riding accident respectively. 

This is a major reason Frame’s Founder, Melissa Bentivoglio, has dedicated herself to bringing Pilates into more people’s homes. “Stabilizing the core helps to provide stability through all movements and minimizes the propensity of injury, not just when working out but in everyday life,” says Bentivoglio. This is movement that can change lives.

Have you used Pilates for injury prevention? How has it helped you either prevent or recover from injury? Did you discover Pilates while recovering from an injury? Let us know in the comments!

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