Group exercise at a gym [Illustrative].
A study at the rehabilitation institute at Kaplan Medical Center in Rehovot has shown that Pilates, a physical fitness system developed a century ago by Joseph Pilates in Germany, can strengthen the body physically and emotionally after a heart attack.
Until now, there have been few studies proving by the scientific method that Pilates relieves back pain, but it is believed to reduce falling by the elderly.
Pilates, which focuses on controlled movements, has some 14,000 instructors and over 10 million people who practice it regularly in the US alone
The Kaplan team headed by physiologist Dr. Ayelet GIladi, explained that after a heart attack, many patients feel lack of confidence and are afraid to exercise as they did before the event.
The story showed that Pilates exercises, which include the use of balls and rubber bands, narrowed the hips, allowed the patients to exercise more vigorously and helped reduce their body-mass index.
Pilates includes the learning of balance, improving movement of limbs, strengthening back muscles and improving flexibility, said Giladi, who added that it also improves the mental state of heart attack victims if suited personally to each one, giving them more confidence.
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