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Transforming Pain into Power

How Pilates Helped Me Come back from Injury

As a former World Aerobics Championship competitor, I learned the hard way how vital recovery is. Eight weeks before a major competition, I injured my back badly during a routine jump, leading to a three-week walking hiatus. I was so upset and lacking hope to compete. But despite being devastated, I was determined not to let my team down. So off I set and with my coach’s encouragement, I explored every possible recovery option, only to discover that my back pain was caused by stress-induced teeth grinding. You read right…teeth grinding! Who would have thought?!

This revelation allowed me to focus on recovery, integrating massage, yoga, Pilates, and visualization into my routine. These methods not only helped me make an incredible comeback at the World Championships but also left me stronger than I had been prior to getting injured. Particularly, Pilates—alongside clean eating and adequate sleep—it is the best thing I have done for my overall wellbeing, highlighting the interconnectedness of our body’s health and stress management.

So, why were these modalities the chosen path for my recovery?

  • Visualisation – So that I could visualize my body healing and functioning well.
  • Massage – Around the injured site to relax all the muscles protecting the injury.
  • Yoga – To bring internal self-awareness to where and what my body was capable of doing every day.
  • Pilates – To Strengthen and mobilise my body from the core out. To align my body better and move more efficiently

Pilates was and still is the most valuable thing I have done for my body aside from clean eating and adequate sleep. Pilates Mat in particular was a feature class which then lead to Power Pilates.

Pilates Mat allowed me to pull it right back to basics of core strengthening and the integration of all my muscles at a good pace. The great thing was, the speed at which I started to see results here was almost immediate! By focussing each day on building strength this way, I saw improvements in my posture and alignment, a leaner physique and a more efficiently strong body.

Once I had built up enough strength, I jumped into Power Pilates which explored very similar movements but added in equipment such as balls, booty bands and Thera bands as well as weights.

This made pilates more progressive, improved my balance and coordination and taught me that pilates is foundational to any movement we do!

Fast forward to, today… I am happy to report I am now a Pilates Instructor and have been teaching it for almost 20 years. It is fundamental to all that I do and I encourage everyone I come by to try it, as I do not exercise without it!


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