ArticlePDF Available

Influence of Pilates training on muscular strength and flexibility in dancers


Abstract and Figures

The purpose of the present study was to assess the effects of a Pilates training program on muscular strength and flexibility in dance students. Fifteen dance students were divided into 2 groups: experimental (n=7) and control (n=8). Both were assessed in beginning and in the end of the study. Muscular strength was assessed measuring the time supported in the technical skills penché and developpé. To asses flexibility, it was measured the angle between limbs in the technical skills arabesque, developpé and cambré. After the first moment of evaluation, the experimental group performed a Mat-Based Pilates Exercise during 11 weeks. The statistic analyses (two-way analysis of variance - ANOVA 2x2) showed significant differences (p ≤ 0,05) in muscular strength and flexibility measurements between groups after the training program. It was concluded that Pilates training has a positive effect on muscular strength and flexibility in dance students.
Content may be subject to copyright.
Dance is an art form and a mean of
expression. However, a full development of
several physical capacities are also needed, which
turn dance into an artistic and athletic activity
(KOUTEDAKIS JAMURTAS, 2004). To achieve
remarkable performances, it is required an
expertise in the aesthetic and athletic side of the
art, since the beauty of the technical skills
presupposes a fully developed body (WELSH,
2009). Each movement has to be performed
correctly, slowly, with control, without apparently
effort (WELSH, 2009), being also necessary
extreme range of motion at the ankle and hip
joints (DEIGHAN, 2005). Therefore, a highly
development of muscular strength and flexibility
are physical demands placed on dancers.
Since physical conditioning is essential to
dancer´s performance, dance research have
examined the effects of supplemental training to
traditional dance classes. Published data have
been proving that a complementary strength and
flexibility training program has positive effects on
2000; KOUTEDAKIS; SHARP, 2004;
However, Koutedakis and Jamurtas (2004)
highlight that “any change in the traditional training
regimens must be approached cautiously to
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17 n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
Artigo Original
Influence of Pilates training on muscular strength and flexibility in
Tânia Patrícia Amorim 1
Filipa Manuel Sousa 2
José Augusto Rodrigues dos Santos 1
1 Track and Field Department, Faculty of Sports, University of Porto, Portugal
2 Biomechanics Laboratory, Faculty of Sports, University of Porto, Portugal
Abstract: The purpose of the present study was to assess the effects of a Pilates training program on
muscular strength and flexibility in dance students. Fifteen dance students were divided into 2 groups:
experimental (n=7) and control (n=8). Both were assessed in beginning and in the end of the study.
Muscular strength was assessed measuring the time supported in the technical skills penché and
developpé. To asses flexibility, it was measured the angle between limbs in the technical skills arabesque,
developpé and cambré. After the first moment of evaluation, the experimental group performed a Mat-Based
Pilates Exercise during 11 weeks. The statistic analyses (two-way analysis of variance - ANOVA 2x2)
showed significant differences (p ≤ 0,05) in muscular strength and flexibility measurements between groups
after the training program. It was concluded that Pilates training has a positive effect on muscular strength
and flexibility in dance students.
Keywords: Dancers. Pilates. Muscular strength. Flexibility.
Influência de um programa de treino Pilates na força muscular e flexibilidade de
Resumo: Foi objectivo avaliar o efeito de um programa de treino Pilates na força muscular e flexibilidade de
bailarinos estudantes. Quinze bailarinos foram divididos em 2 grupos: experimental (n=7) e controlo (n=8).
Ambos foram avaliados no início e final do estudo. A força muscular foi avaliada através do tempo de
sustentação nos elementos técnicos penché e develop. Para avaliar a flexibilidade foi medido o ângulo de
amplitude entre os segmentos nos elementos técnicos arabesque, cambré e developpé. Após o 1.º
momento de avaliação os bailarinos do grupo experimental participaram num programa de Mat-Based
Pilates Exercise durante 11 semanas. A análise estatística (análise de variância para medidas repetidas -
ANOVA 2x2) demonstrou diferenças significativas (p ≤ 0,05) entre os grupos no âmbito da força muscular e
flexibilidade após o programa de treino. Conclui-se que o Pilates induz alterações positivas ao nível da
força muscular e flexibilidade de bailarinos.
Palavras-Chave: Bailarinos. Pilates. Força muscular. Flexibilidade.
Pilates training effects
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17, n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
ensure that the aesthetic content of the dance is
not affected by new training techniques”.
Therefore, it is important to understand the
demands of dance to adapt the complementary
training according to dance characteristics and
principles, meeting the exact needs of dance
From this point, we would like to highlight the
Pilates method, that despite the frequent use, it
has not been sufficiently investigated in relation to
dance performance (BERNARDO; NAGLE, 2006).
This technique is point out in the literature has
beneficial to improve the general muscular
strength and flexibility (SEKENDIZ; ALTUN;
2009; KLOUBEC, 2010), which are capacities
essentials to dancers. Besides, the Pilates method
has inherent principles such as control,
concentration, centering, flow of movement,
precision and breathing, involving likewise planes
of movement similar to dance technique
(AHEARN, 2006). Hence, as it is possible to
recognize movement patterns and principles in
Pilates method that converge with dance
technique, and since it has been suggested that
the ideally complementary training should fulfill
with dance technique demands, the vital issue that
arises is: Can Pilates technique be useful to
improve dancers’ performance, being a promise
tool to be used as complementary strength and
flexibility training?
The purpose of the present study was to test
the effectiveness of a Pilates training program to
develop muscular strength and flexibility in dance
Fifteen dance students, 12 women and 3 men,
with more than ten years of daily practice in dance
voluntarily in the study. Dancers were from the
same institution (Ginasiano Dancing School), and
none of them present, until the moment, any kind
of injury that could influence their performances.
Subjects were assigned into experimental (EG)
and control (CG) groups. The EG was composed
by 7 dancers (6 women and 1 men; age: 15,7 ±
0,8 years old; experience of dance training: 11 ±
2,7 years), and the CG by 8 dancers (6 women
and 2 men; age: 16,3 ± 0,9 years old; experience
of dance training: 11,9 ± 3,7 years). All the groups
participated in the classes of their scholar
curricula. The EG attended 6 hours a week of
classical and modern dance technique, 1 hour and
half of pas de deux and 1 hour of character dance.
The CG attended 7 hours a week of classical and
modern dance technique, 1 hour and half of pas
de deux and 1 hour of character dance.
All subjects signed a written agreement in
compliance with the University of Porto ethical
Training Protocol
This is an experimental study with two
moments of evaluation. After the first moment of
evaluation (measurement of initial muscular
strength and flexibility levels), only the EG
performed a Mat-Based Pilates Exercises during
11 weeks (2 sessions per week of 60 minutes).
After the Pilates sessions, both groups were
submitted at a second moment of evaluation with
the same features as the first one. During the
research both groups attended the usual dance
The Pilates training protocol was supervisor by
a qualified Pilates instructor. Basic and
intermediate exercises were employed; advanced
exercises were added as technique and time of
training progressed. At the beginning of the
training protocol, all dancers performed, slowly, 3
sets of 8 repetitions of each exercise; increasing 1
repetition each week till 12 repetitions were
reached. After reaching the 12 repetitions it was
introduced the intermediate or advanced form of
each exercise, performing 3 sets of 8 repetitions.
In the sessions it was used exercises with a
similarity with dance technique (e.g. “scissors”,
“the hundred”, “side bend”, “side kick”, “back
support”). Each session was set up in 3 phases:
warm-up (15 minutes), Pilates exercises (35
minutes) and cool-down (10minutes).
Muscular strength measurement
It was evaluated the isometric strength of the
lower limbs. Subjects were asked to maintain as
long as possible, with both limbs, the technical
skills penché and developpé (front, side, back) in
the barre. It was timed how long each dancer
could sustain the positions, without swinging the
body. This protocol is used by the Federation
Internationale de Gymnastique (Physical Testing
Program), and its choice derives from the
functional similarity with dance exercises. The
evaluation tests were preceded by a period of
T. P. Amorim, F. M. Sousa & J. A. R. dos Santos
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17, n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
Flexibility measurement
Three technical skills were assessed, collected
on the right and left side: arabesque, cambré
backward (in the barre) and developpé (front,
side, back), also in the barre. Two high definition
cameras, Casio Digital Camera EX-F1 were used
to photograph the chosen movements. It was
used a calibration scale placed next to a moving
barre (Figure 1). The two cameras were directed
to the calibration scale, one in the front, and other
in the rear of the scale. During data collection, the
positions of the cameras and calibration scale
were not modified; it was only modified the
position of the barre to assess the technical skills
developpé front and cambré.
Figure 1. Assembling material for data collection
Each dancer was marked in the following
anatomical points: ankle joint, knee joint, iliac
crest, shoulder joint, elbow joint and wrist joint.
After, each dancer performed the different
technical skills inside the calibration scale; both
cameras captured the images (10 frames per
second at 3 megapixel resolution).
After data collection, it was selected only one
photo for each skill, taking as selection criterion
the most corrected technical execution and the
highest point for limbs extension.
The angles among body segments were
assessed through Matlab routines (Figure 2). For
the technical skills arabesque, developpé back
and developpé side, points were marked in the
inner sides of ankle and knee joints of both limbs.
For the developpé front the points were marked in
the inner side of ankle and knee joints (supporting
limb) and in the external side of ankle and knee
joints (elevating limb). For assessing the angle
between the trunk and the lower limbs in the
technical element cambré, points were marked in
the knee joint, iliac crest, shoulder joint and elbow
Figure 2. Example in how angle between body
segments were obtained; asterisks represent the
anatomical points marked for obtain the angle
between body segments in this technical skill
(arabesque). For each technical skill were marked
different anatomical points.
Statistical Analyses
Mean (± sd) was calculated for all parameters.
Data from experimental and control groups
were normally distributed. Comparisons between
the first and second moment of evaluation and
between experimental and control groups were
made using two-way analysis of variance -
ANOVA 2x2 (group X moment), with moment
being a repeated factor.
All statistical analysis were performed using
SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social
Sciences, 19.0), and the criterion for significance
was set at p ≤ 0,05.
Significant results can be analyzed in table 1
and 2.
Table 1 presents results for muscular strength
pre and post-Pilates training in EG and CG. EG
and CG had similar pre-Pilates muscular strength
range in all technical skills evaluated. However,
after Pilates training, EG increased their range in
all technical skills. This increasing were not
followed by CG, being stated a significant group x
moment interaction (p ≤ 0,05) in all technical skills
evaluated. This significant interaction revealed
that muscular strength was significantly higher in
the EG after Pilates training.
Pilates training effects
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17, n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
Table 1. Muscular strength measures (seconds) pre and post-Pilates training.
Experimental group
x ± sd
x ± sd
x ± sd
x ± sd
Right limb
25,1 ± 11,3
47,6 ± 22,3
24,9 ± 4,3
26,8 ± 3,2
Group X Moment
Left limb
35,1 ± 13,4
49,4 ± 17,8 1
24,5 ± 8,1
24,4 ± 7,7
Group X Moment
Developpé front
Right limb
12,9 ± 5,1
19,9 ± 6,2
14,8 ± 4,1
14,3 ± 4,2
Group X Moment
Developpé front
Left limb
17,7 ± 7,1
23,9 ± 8,2
12,3 ± 2,7
12,4 ± 3,1
Group X Moment
Developpé side
Right limb
15,0 ± 4,0
22,9 ± 11
14,0 ± 4,2
14,1 ± 4,6
Group X Moment
Developpé side
Left limb
16,6 ± 8,9
24,7 ± 6,5
12,5 ± 2,9
12,8 ± 2,4
Group X Moment
Developpé back
Right limb
29,3 ± 11,9
49,0 ± 14,9
24,9 ± 7,4
25,0 ± 6,0
Group X Moment
Developpé back
Left limb
40,9 ± 9,2
52,7 ± 12,6
26,9 ± 4,8
26,9 ± 5,7
Group X Moment
Table 2. Flexibility measures (degrees) pre and post-Pilates training.
Experimental group
Control group
x ± sd
x ± sd
x ± sd
x ± sd
Right limb
99,3 ± 8,9
109,2 ± 12,7
96,4 ± 4,2
97,0 ± 4,7
Group X Moment
Left limb
102,2 ± 12,1
109,5 ± 11,0
93,4 ± 6,5
95,0 ± 4,5
Group X Moment
Developpé front
Right limb
102,3 ± 12,7
112,0 ± 13,1
102,4 ± 10,2
101,5 ± 8,7
Group X Moment
Developpé front
Left limb
102,2 ± 13,5
110,3 ± 13,3
95,5 ± 5,3
96,2 ± 5,7
Group X Moment
Developpé side
Right limb
115,7 ± 21,9
125,7 ± 18,7
110,1 ± 13,4
110,7 ± 12,5
Group X Moment
Developpé side
Left limb
113,9 ± 88,1
121,5 ± 18,0
108,8± 14,4
109,7 ± 12,9
Group X Moment
Developpé back
Right limb
112,2 ± 10,1
119, 8 ± 12,9
103,8 ± 6,9
102,2 ± 5,8
Group X Moment
Developpé back
Left limb
113,8 ± 13,1
117, 3 ± 12,9
102,6 ± 4,2
102,2 ± 4,4
Group X Moment
Cambré backward
Right limb
91,9 ± 24,1
88,0 ± 23,3
88,1 ± 14,0
87,6 ± 15,9
Group X Moment
Cambré backward
Left limb
95,2 ± 20,4
88,9 ± 20,4
93,9 ± 17,7
92,4 ± 15,8
Group X Moment
T. P. Amorim, F. M. Sousa & J. A. R. dos Santos
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17, n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
Table 2 presents results for flexibility pre and
post-Pilates training in EG and CG. EG and CG
were found to have similar flexibility range in all
technical skills measured at the first moment of
evaluation, but EG had significantly greater
flexibility increases in the technical skills
arabesque (right limb), developpé front, developpé
side and developpé back after Pilates training.
This meant that EG had better flexibility range at
the final measurement, being stated a significant
group x moment interaction (p 0,05) in these
technical skills. However, analysis revealed that
there were no significant main or interaction effect
on the technical skill cambré backward and
arabesque (left limb), being the group x moment
interaction not significant (p 0,05). This meant
that both groups did not improve significantly their
flexibility range in these technical skills. However,
despite not being significant, EG had increased
their flexibility range in 7,3 degrees on the
technical skill arabesque (left limb).
The main aim of this study was to investigate
the effects of Pilates training on muscular strength
and flexibility in dancers, trying to test that this
technique can be useful to dancers. For the
purpose of this study, it was selected a range of
technical skills that require the use of flexibility and
muscular strength. Since dance skills are usual
performed with each limb in separate, data were
collected with both limbs, measured separately.
However, it is not purpose of this study to
establish comparisons between limbs.
From the analyses, the present results
demonstrated that Pilates training increased
dancers’ muscular strength levels. Since there are
not similar studies, it is not possible to compare
directly these results. Studies realized with other
populations corroborate our results. So, several
authors have demonstrated that a Pilates training
program had a positive impact on muscular
strength levels in sedentary populations
Apparently, the nature of Pilates training can
explain the strength gains found in the present
study. Analyzing dancers training patterns,
abdominal muscle development is neglected, what
rises the importance for the training of this crucial
musculature. Abdominal muscles in normal dance
training is only stimulated by the characteristic
attitude of dance, which emphasizes the pelvic
retroversion position. Pilates training, continuously
stimulating the abdominal musculature provides a
stronger core, which is essential for set and
support the kinetic chains required to raise lower
limbs. Better improvements can be verified in the
technical skills penché and developpé back. The
constant gluteal muscles contraction required by
Pilates exercises, is probably the main cause for
the greatest improvements on muscular strength
in these technical skills.
The present study showed significant increase
on the flexibility assessed by the technical skills
arabesque and developpé. No other studies with
dancers were found, however several authors
have noted positive impacts of Pilates training on
the flexibility of sedentary subjects (SEKENDIZ
2010) and soccer players (BERTOLLA BARONI;
JUNIOR; OLTRAMI, 2007). However, it is
necessary to highlight that these studies used
different methods and different body zones
measurements. We want to reinforce the present
data validity because the sample of the present
study was composed by subjects who already
had great levels of global flexibility. However,
some assumptions should be considered. Albeit
the literature suggest that static stretching
improves flexibility better than dynamic stretching
HEDRICK, 2000), the present study showed
significant flexibility gains through dynamic
exercises. Furthermore, it can be speculate that
flexibility gains noted in the present study could
also be related to muscular strength gains after
the Pilates training. The relationship between
muscular strength and flexibility has been stated
by several authors (LEIGHTON, 1964;
however flexibility benefits obtained by strength
training require maximum range of motion during
strength exercises (STONE FLECK; TRIPLETT;
KRAMER, 1991). It should be pointed out the
Pilates training effects
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17, n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
importance of muscular strength training in
dancing, since dancers often show great levels of
flexibility, but do not have strength enough to
perform movements with maximum range of
motion. Facing the impossibility of knowing exactly
the contribution of muscle strength to flexibility
gains noted in the present study, it can be only
speculate that the execution of movements with
full range of motion and with some static
sustenance require high strength levels besides a
great neuromotor coordination between agonist
and antagonist muscles.
Pilates training did not improve flexibility in the
technical skill cambré. Probably this is due to the
weak stimulation of dorsal and lumbar muscles
elicited by the Pilates exercises used. Therefore,
the slight flexibility gains noticed in cambré, are
probably due to the usual stimulus provided by
dance classes.
As a conclusion, the present data confirmed
that Pilates training can significant improve
dancers’ muscular strength and flexibility, affecting
positively dance performance. As Pilates
exercises emphasizes movements with some
kinetic similarity to dance technique, we believe
that this type of training is suitable for dancers to
improve muscular strength and flexibility.
AHEARN, E. L. The Pilates method and ballet
technique: applications in dance studio. Journal
of Dance Education, Philadelphia, v. 6, n. 3, p.
92-99, 2006.
BANDY, W. D.; IRION, J. M. The effect of time on
static stretch on the flexibility of the hamstring
muscles. Physical Therapy, Alexandria, v. 74, n.
9, p. 54-60, 1994.
effect of time and frequency of static stretching on
flexibility of the hamstring muscles. Physical
Therapy, Alexandria, v. 77, n. 10, p. 1090-1096,
BERNARDO, L. M.; NAGLE, E. F. Does Pilates
training benefit dancers?: an appraisal of pilates
research literature. Journal of Dance Medicine &
Science, Eugene, v. 10, n. 1/2, p. 46-50, 2006.
OLTRAMI, J. D. Effects of a training program
using the Pilates method in flexibility of sub- 20
indoor soccer athletes. Revista Brasileira de
Medicina do Esporte, Niterói, v. 4, p. 198-202,
DEIGHAN, M. Flexibility in dance. Journal of
Dance Medicine & Science, Eugene, v. 9, n. 1, p.
13-17, 2005.
training and detraining effects on flexibility
peformance in the elderly are intensity-dependent.
Journal of Strength and Conditioning
Research, Philadelphia, v. 20, n. 3, p. 634-642,
ZEERIS, I.; KATRABAS, I. The effects of strength
training, cardiovascular training and their
combination on flexibility of inactive older adults.
International Journal of Sports Medicine,
Stuttgart, v. 23, p. 112-119, 2002.
GROSSMAN, G.; WILMERDING, M. The effect of
conditioning on the height of dancer’s extension in
à la seconde. Journal of Dance Medicine &
Science, Eugene, v. 4, n. 4, p. 117-21, 2000.
HEDRICK, A. Dynamic flexibility training. Strength
and Conditioning Journal, Philadelphia, v. 22, n.
5, p. 33-38, 2000.
KLOUBEC, J. A. Pilates for improvement of
muscle endurance, flexibility, balance and posture.
Journal of Strength and Conditioning
Research, Philadelphia, v. 24, n. 3, p. 661-667,
KOUTEDAKIS, Y.; JAMURTAS, A. The dancer as
a performing athlete: physiological considerations.
Sports Medicine, Auckland, v. 34, n. 10, p. 651-
661, 2004.
KOUTEDAKIS, Y.; SHARP, N. Thigh-muscles
strength training, dance exercise, dynamometry,
and anthropometry in professional ballerinas.
Journal of Strength and Conditioning
Research, Philadelphia, v. 18, n. 4, p. 714-718,
MYSZKEWYCZ, L. The effects of three months of
T. P. Amorim, F. M. Sousa & J. A. R. dos Santos
Motriz, Rio Claro, v.17, n.4, p.660-666, out./dez. 2011
aerobic and strength training on selected
performance-and fitness-related parameters in
modern dance students. Journal of Strength and
Conditioning Research, Philadelphia, v. 3, n. 21,
p. 808-812, 2007.
LEIGHTON, J. R. A study of the effect of
progressive weight training on flexibility. Journal
of Association for Physical and Mental
Rehabilitation, Hattiesburg, v. 18, p. 101-104,
ROBERTS, J. M.; WILSON, K. Effect of stretching
duration on active and passive range of motion in
the lower extremity. British Journal of Sports
Medicine, London, v. 33, p. 259-263, 1999.
ROGERS, K.; GIBSON, A. L. Eigth-week
traditional mat pilates training-program effects on
adult fitness characteristics. Research Quarterly
for Exercise and Sport, Reston, v. 80, n. 3, p.
569-574, 2009.
C.; BUNKER, D. J. Influence of moderately
intense strength training on flexibility in sedentary
young women. Journal of Strength and
Conditioning Research, Philadelphia, v. 24, n.
11, p. 3144-3149, 2010.
AKIN, S. Effects of Pilates exercise on trunk
strength, endurance and flexibility in sedentary
adult females. Journal of Bodywork and
Movement Therapies, Kidlington, v. 11, p. 318-
326, 2007.
The effects of supplemental weight training for
ballet dancers. Journal of Applied Sport
Science Research, Philadelphia, v. 4, n. 3, p. 95-
102, 1990.
KRAMER, W. J. Health and performance related
potential of resistance training of resistance
training. Sports Medicine, Auckland, v. 11, p.
210-231, 1991.
WELSH, T. Conditioning for dancers. Florida:
University Press of Florida, 2009.
Tânia Patrícia Amorim
Rua Dr. Plácido Costa, 91
Track and Field Department; 4200-45
Porto Portugal
Recebido em: 9 de março de 2011.
Aceito em: 23 de agosto de 2011.
Motriz. Revista de Educação Física. UNESP, Rio Claro,
SP, Brasil - eISSN: 1980-6574 - está licenciada sob
Creative Commons - Atribuição 3.0
... Many studies show that Pilates exercise training can improve the flexibility of a muscle as well as muscular strength [17,19,20]. ...
Full-text available
An athlete's life revolves around their sport. Retirement from sports is a unique transition that influences significant identity, body, and lifestyle changes [1]. While competitive athletes exceed recommendations for physical activity, this only translates into regular physical activity after retirement from sports. Research suggests the nature of competitive sports participation may need to be more conducive to lifelong physical activity [2] Falling out from sports and physical activity leads the body into deconditioning. The study aims to analyze the effectiveness of Pilates in improving speed, agility and back extensor endurance in a deconditioned athlete. Materials and Methods: The clinical setup for the case study was arranged at VAPMS College of Physiotherapy in Visakhapatnam. The pre and post-tests were performed on the premises of the institution. The subject is a male athlete and a middle-distance runner. The subject received Pilates training four sessions/week for eight weeks for 40 minutes. Speed, Agility and Back extensor endurance were assessed with the outcome measures 20-meter sprint, Illinois agility test and Biering Sorensen test. Results: Results obtained from the present case study indicate that eight weeks of Mat Pilates improved speed, agility and back extensor endurance. Based on this study, there is a difference in the values recorded pre and post-Pilates training. Two trials were performed for each outcome measure, and the better of the two trials was considered. Conclusion: The results from the present case study concluded that the Mat Pilates exercise training is effective in the improvement and enhancement of the speed, Agility and back extensor endurance of an athlete. Overall, it shows that an athlete's re-conditioning is possible with Pilates training. Keywords: Pilates training, speed, Agility, back extensor endurance
... So that without maintaining fitness cognitive function includes the process of learning, perception, understanding, understanding, attention and so on, causing the reaction and behavior of the elderly to slow down. Meanwhile, cognitive function includes things related to volitional drives such as decreased movement, action, coordination, which results in the elderly becoming less agile [23]. Furthermore, proper repetition will further assist the elderly in mastering movement for the survival of the elderly. ...
... Estudos [20] observaram os ganhos significantes na flexibilidade de 15 sujeitos após um programa de Pilates com 11 semanas de duração. Bertolla et al. [21] mostraram o aumento significativo da flexibilidade de 11 atletas juvenis de futsal do Rio Grande do Sul. ...
Objetivo: Avaliar os efeitos de um programa de treinamento de Pilates solo em jovens sedentárias. Métodos: Participaram do estudo 10 jovens sedentárias do gênero feminino, com idade entre 18 e 30 anos, na qual as variáveis avaliadas foram comparadas antes e depois de um protocolo de Pilates solo durante 18 sessões, 2 sessões para avaliação e reavaliação e 16 sessões de treinamento, 2 vezes por semana com duração de 60 minutos. Resultados: Foram incluí­dos 10 sujeitos do gênero feminino, com idade média de 22,7 ± 2,3 anos, peso médio de 55,6 ± 5,8 kg, altura média de 1,62 ± 0,1 m e Índice de Massa Corporal médio de 21,21 ± 2,3 kg/m². Houve diferença significante no aspecto da flexibilidade, no teste de sentar e alcançar com o banco de Wells com os escores médios antes de 21,2 ± 9,7 cm, e depois de 33,7 ± 6,1 cm. No Índice de Qualidade do Sono de Pittsburgh (PSQI), observou-se uma diminuição dos escores antes e depois do treinamento, respectivamente, 8,8 ± 2,5 pontos e 4,2 ± 2,8 pontos. Assim como na Escala de Sonolência de Epworth (ESE) também se observou diminuição dos escores antes e depois, respectivamente, 14,4 ± 3,5 pontos e 8,4 ± 3,2 pontos. Conclusão: O método Pilates solo contribuiu para o ganho da flexibilidade e melhora na qualidade do sono em mulheres jovens sedentárias.Palavras-chave: jovens, exercí­cio, sedentarismo, flexibilidade.
... The heterogeneity regarding the aetiology of the clinical conditions found in the researched studies, which involved people with neurological, endocrine, orthopedic, and oncological pathologies, may be related to PM being considered an eclectic activity with minimal contraindications related to its practice. Many individuals prevented from participating in other regular exercise programs due to certain physical and functional limitations find an open way to practice such a method that is gaining new adherents every passing day (Mallery et al., 2003;Amorim, 2011;Macedo, 2015). ...
Full-text available
Created in Germany by Joseph Pilates in the 1920s, the Pilates Method (PM) uses exercises aiming to improve physical health and mental balance. The present work objective was to verify, through a systematic literature review without delineating languages and dates, the influence of PM on the quality of life (QoL) of its practitioners. Medline, Embase, Web of Science, Scopus, and Google Scholar databases were consulted. The articles were independently selected by two researchers, who also conducted the risk of bias assessment of the included articles. Were identified 2489 articles on the databases, of which 30 were included in the study synthesis. The practice of PM improves the QoL of its practitioners, providing enhanced functional capacity, pain relief, and improvement of emotional aspects in individuals of both sexes, different age groups, and different clinical contexts. Systematic Review Record: PROSPERO CRD42021273295
... It is thought that core training is important for sport climbing which coordinates strength, balance and flexibility. Recent studies have provided information only on core training about strength and balance improvement in general [7,19,5,10,1,13,21,11,18,12,9]. ...
... Favorable results were recorded for the flexibility of the shoulder, the posterior thigh muscles and posterior trunk muscles, the method being beneficial also for the specific technical skills required for volleyball serve. Another similar study -conducted by Amorim et al. (2011) on 15 dancers with an average age of 16, over the course of 11 weeks, 2 Pilates sessions per week, 1 hour per session -has generated an increase of the angle between segments during the various dancing moves, enhancing their flexibility and improving their technique. Emery et al. (2010) recorded favorable results using the Pilates method on a group of 10 men with an average age of 33, following a 12week program, 2 sessions per week, 60 minutes per session. ...
Full-text available
The range and quality of sports technique is conditioned by flexibility. This study analyzes the effects of practical activities that are specific to the first year FPES Galati courses on the upper body flexibility. Over the course of the academic year 2017-2018, the investigated group (composed of 27 girls and 46 boys) has constantly participated for 28 weeks in the 6 practical courses (gymnastics, track and field, swimming, football, volleyball, ice skating), divided in a balanced way throughout the two semesters. The analysis and comparison of the results for the two sexes, during the initial and final tests, applied at the beginning and the end of the academic year, show a superiority of the girls' flexibility in almost all events. The Wilcoxon test for paired samples has identified significant progress between the initial and final assessments in the female group, in 4 of the tests (Right lateral trunk flexibility Combined spine-hip flexibility, Shoulder flexibility, Vertical arm flexibility), recording Z values corresponding to thresholds of P<0.05; however, in the male group, no significant progress was recorded not even in one of the tests, all Z values corresponding to thresholds of P>0.05. The investigation of the differences recorded between independent samples, using the Mann Whitney U test, has identified significant increases in the girls' values in only 3 events, during the initial tests, and in 4 during the final ones, even if the girls' average values are higher than the boys' values for most tests. In conclusion, the boys did not record significant improvements in their performances, only a slight increase or the same values over the course of the investigated period; the girls however, recorded results that show a potential of optimizing their flexibility at this age. The authors recommend that an increased attention should be given during practical courses to develop the students' flexibility as a favoring factor of motion fluidity and improvement of the students' motor potential.
... The TG rhythmic gymnasts increased the maintenance time in prone bridge, as well as the muscle activation in the front trunk. In accordance with these results, previous studies have demonstrated that core training increases the maintenance time in the endurance test, and so increases trunk strength and stability strength in women collegiate gymnasts [38], dance students [39] or competitive collegiate dancers [40]. In this sense, the added and positive effect that core training could have on the gymnasts is again reflected. ...
Full-text available
Background: Rhythmic gymnastics performance is characterized by technical elements involving flexibility, aerobic capacity and strength. Increased core strength in rhythmic gymnastics could lead to improved sporting performance. Objective: The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of 12 weeks of core muscle training on core muscle performance in rhythmic gymnasts. Methods: A randomized controlled study involving 24 rhythmic gymnastics was conducted. Participants were randomly assigned to a control group (CG; n = 12; age 13.50 ± 3.17 years) or a training group (TG; n = 12; age 14.41 ± 2.35 years). Body composition, isometric strength of trunk, core endurance and core muscle electromyographic activity were measured (EMG) after 12 weeks of core training. Independent sample t-tests were carried out to compare baseline values between groups. A two-way repeated-measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) (time × group) was applied. Results: The TG improved body composition, trunk lean mass (mean differences MD = -0.31; p = 0.040), lean mass (MD = 0.43; p = 0.037) and bone mass (MD = -0.06; p < 0.001) after training. Core training increased isometric strength of trunk, flexion test (MD = -21.53; p = 0.019) and extension test (MD = 22.7; p = 0.049), as well as the prone bridge core endurance test (MD = -11.27; p = 0.040). The EMG values also increased in the TG in prone bridge for front trunk (MD = -58.58; p = 0.026). Conclusions: Core strength training leads to improvements in body composition, as well as improvements in trunk strength and increases in muscle electromyographic activity. These improvements could therefore improve performance during competitive rhythmic gymnastics exercises.
Full-text available
Introduction The Pilates is a training method that aims to improve body awareness for movement re-education, bringing muscular and mental balance. It is believed that these benefits can effectively improve the flexibility of female university aerobics students. Methods 90 female college students in the optional aerobics course were selected and divided into two groups. Data from the experimental and control groups were evaluated for comparison before and after the experiment. The aerobic exercises of the two groups of female university aerobics students were scored, aiming to compare and explore which training method was more effective. Results The baseline time and pace score in the Pilates intervention was changed from 2.35±0.71 to 2.55±0.76, a movement set changed from 3.86±0.98 to 4.01±1.07, movement performance from 1.67±0.61 to 1.72±0.57, and foot skills from 1.40±0.48 to 1.41±0.50. The mean aerobic movement performance score changed from 62.45 to 80.53, an increase of 18.08 points. Conclusion The Pilates training can effectively improve the aerobic performance of female university students. Level of evidence II; Therapeutic studies - investigation of treatment outcomes. Keywords: Pilates Training; Sports Performance; Aerobic Exercise
Background: Pilates can be performed by children as a form of exercise to promote healthy growth and development. The increasing use of Pilates as a type of exercise for children or as an adjunct tool in pediatric rehabilitation should be supported by evidence of its benefits. The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to assess the effects of Pilates as an exercise prescription for children and adolescents. Methods: Five electronic databases were searched to identify trials (randomized controlled clinical trials or quasi-experimental studies) with a population of children or adolescents in which Pilates (mat or equipment) was performed as a form of exercise. Studies that investigated outcomes related to health and physical performance was analyzed. Individual trial effects were extracted and pooled for meta-analysis whenever possible. To evaluate the external and internal validity of the studies, we assessed their risk of bias. Results: Fifteen studies (from 945 records), including 1235 participants, met the eligibility criteria, and were included. The reported outcomes were heterogeneous, so only the effect on flexibility could be included in the meta-analysis (n = 4 studies). A significant positive trend toward improved flexibility for the control group compared with the Pilates group was found (Std. mean difference, 0.54; 95%CI: 0,18, 0.91; p = 0.003). Conclusion: Few studies have assessed the effect of Pilates on children and adolescents. The lack of appropriate methodological descriptions/controls made it impossible to determine if all of the included studies were of good quality.
Full-text available
Introduction Pilates prioritizes the control of central muscle groups, which have a strong predilection value for volleyball training. Objective To investigate the repercussions of Pilates training on motor coordination and stability in volleyball players. Methods 20 athletes from a female volleyball team were randomly divided between the experimental and the control groups. Pilates intervention was performed in the experimental group. The control group followed the traditional training format, finally comparing the training results after eight weeks. Results In the flexibility index of the experimental group, the weights increased from 23,11±5,08 times to 28,02±6,42 times; the left and right axes increased from 7,74±10,13 seconds to 8,83±8,13 seconds. In terms of the stability index, the number of intervals repeated in 20 seconds increased from 35.44±0.75 to 46.45±0.91; the lateral throw of the medicine ball was increased from 59.61±16.16 meters to 78.38±16.22 meters. The range of variation of each index is more evident than that of the control group. Conclusion Pilates training becomes superior to usual training for the improvement of coordination and stability of volleyball players. Level of evidence II; Therapeutic studies - investigation of treatment outcomes. Keywords: Pilates Training; Perceptual Motor Performance; Volleyball
Full-text available
A flexibilidade consiste na capacidade motora relacionada com a amplitude de movimento atingida por cada articulação. A flexibilidade sofre decréscimo com a idade; durante a adolescência, devido ao estirão de crescimento puberal, ocorre considerável perda dessa característica. Sabe-se, também, que atletas de futebol e futsal, como resultado dos programas de fortalecimento visando o gesto do chute, tendem a apresentar considerável encurtamento da musculatura posterior da coxa, o que promove perda de rendimento e predispõe o atleta a lesões musculares. Assim, o objetivo do presente estudo foi verificar o efeito sobre a flexibilidade proporcionado por um programa de Pilates® em uma equipe de futsal da categoria juvenil (17-20 anos), considerada uma população altamente propensa a limitações dessa capacidade e que pode usufruir de inúmeros benefícios com o incremento da mesma. Para tal, dividiu-se o grupo de atletas em grupo Pilates (GP, n = 6) e grupo controle (GC, n = 5). Optou-se por avaliar a flexibilidade dos atletas com dois métodos (flexímetro e banco de Wells). Realizaram-se avaliações em três momentos distintos: pré (24 horas antes do início do programa), pós-imediato (24 horas após o fim do programa) e pós-tardio (15 dias após o fim do programa). O programa foi realizado em três sessões semanais de aproximadamente 25 minutos, durante quatro semanas. Os resultados obtidos com o presente estudo comprovam que o protocolo de treinamento com o método Pilates® empregado pelos pesquisadores conseguiu incrementar a flexibilidade dos atletas juvenis de futsal. Tal programa apresentou efeitos agudos, representados pelo aumento estatisticamente significante da flexibilidade no pós-imediato (p < 0,05 no banco de Wells e p < 0,01 no flexímetro) e crônicos, observados no ligeiro declínio (não significativo estatisticamente, p > 0,05) no período pós-tardio para ambos os métodos. Sugere-se que mais estudos sejam realizados com o método Pilates® a fim de elucidar todas as possibilidades de aplicação dessa modalidade terapêutica.
There are many body therapies from which dancers may choose in order to gain and maintain strength, flexibility, and balance and to avoid injury or facilitate rehabilitation from injury. The questions are: which system is best for the given student, and how can educators incorporate the many somatic perspectives into their curriculums. This article describes how Pilates can be integrated into ballet technique class. Attention is given to the potential physical benefits of Pilates, how Pilates mat work can support the movement objectives of a ballet technique class, and the technical and anatomical knowledge gained by the instructor and student through the use of the method.
Pilates has been used extensively by dancers since Joseph H. Pilates first developed his method of training over 60 years ago. With the extent to which Pilates has been incorporated into dancers' training and conditioning, the question arises as to the scientific basis for this practice. Our two-fold purpose was to critically appraise published research on Pilates training in dancers and propose future research strategies for this method in dancers. An extensive literature search was conducted, using Pilates as the search word. A total of 277 articles were found. Thirty-nine articles and abstracts were published in refereed, professional journals, of which there were 10 clinical trials. Of these clinical trials, only 5 were published with dancers and gymnasts as the population of interest. The strengths of these 5 clinical trials were: 1. the use of Pilates by experienced instructors; 2. well-written hypotheses; and 3. documented need for research in this area. The weaknesses were: 1. lack of true experimental designs; 2. lack of statistical power; and 3. small sample sizes. There is weak support for the effectiveness of Pilates in improving strength and alignment in dancers, primarily due to a lack of sound research methodology surrounding each study. Utilizing control groups, randomizing subjects, calculating statistical power, and using valid and reliable methods to measure outcomes can enhance the scientific basis for Pilates in the dance profession.
The effects of a nine-week supplemental weight training program on college female ballet dancers was investigated. The parameters studied were lower body strength, muscular endurance, flexibility and a subjective evaluation of ballet technique performance. Seven ballet dancers participated in a progressive weight training program for the lower body designed to accommodate the specific needs of ballet. They trained three days a week for nine weeks, while seven other dancers served as a control group. All subjects regularly participated in ballet technique class four days per week for 90 minutes. The weight training group showed significant improvement in adductor strength (15.1 percent), lateral hip flexibility (6.6 percent), anaerobic power (49.5 percent), muscular endurance, ballet precision and overall performance in ballet technique. No increase in limb circumference was observed. It was concluded that a supplemental weight training program for ballet dancers can improve functional leg strength, endurance and anaerobic power without interfering with artistic and physical performance requirements of ballet. (C) 1990 National Strength and Conditioning Association
The purpose of this study was to document the effects on the height of the gesture leg in dancer's extension in à la seconde (the combined actions of hip flexion, external rotation, and abduction) following a six-week regimen of conditioning aimed specifically at the hip flexors. Sixteen intermediate and advanced college age female dancers in a university dance program were invited to participate as a convenience sample on a volunteer basis. The subjects were divided in half, eight serving as the control group and eight serving as the treatment group. The control group continued their usual dance regimen for the six-week period. The treatment group added five minutes of therapeutic exercise three times per week following their usual dance regimen for the six-week period. T-tests served to compare the pre-test and post-test scores for the control and experimental groups. There was a significant difference in the mean height of the gesture leg in the experimental group (+ 6.25 inches, p = 0.001). There was no significant difference in the mean height of the gesture leg in the control group. Extra conditioning targeting hip flexion has been shown to be beneficial in this small sample of intermediate and advanced university dancers. Potentially, adequate strength in this vital area of the dancer's body may enhance performance and help reduce compensations that can lead to injury.
Dance, and in particular ballet, is characterized by beautiful body shapes and lines, much of which are due to flexibility. Without adequate flexibility, dancers are unlikely to raise themselves to professional standards. However, with such importance placed on this fitness-related parameter, there is a surprising lack of published data on dancers that examines flexibility in relation to injury risk and muscular performance. The following review summarizes the main findings from the dance, sports, and medical literature.
The objective of this study was to examine the effects of Pilates exercise on abdominal and lower back strength, abdominal muscular endurance and posterior trunk flexibility of sedentary adult females. The body fat and body mass index (BMI) pre-and post-data were also assessed as secondary outcomes. To assess abdominal and lower back strength, posterior trunk flexion and extension data were obtained concentrically on a Biodex isokinetic dynamometer at speeds of 601 and 1201 s À1 . Abdominal muscular endurance was assessed using the crunch test and posterior trunk flexibility was measured using the sit and reach test. Results of multivariate analysis revealed a significant difference (po.05) between pre-and post-measures of 601 s À1 flexion/extension and 1201 s À1 flexion, and abdominal muscular endurance and posterior trunk flexibility of the exercise group. It can be concluded that there was a positive effect of Modern Pilates mat exercises on abdominal and lower back muscular strength, abdominal muscular endurance and posterior trunk flexibility in sedentary adult females regardless of the fact that the body weight and fat percentages did not differ significantly.
The present study is the first to examine whether moderately intense resistance training improves flexibility in an exclusively young, sedentary women population. Twenty-four, young, sedentary women were divided into 3 groups as follows: agonist/antagonist (AA) training group, alternated strength training (AST) group, or a control group (CG). Training occurred every other day for 8 weeks for a total of 24 sessions. Training groups performed 3 sets of 10 to 12 repetitions per set except for abdominal training where 3 sets of 15 to 20 reps were performed. Strength (1 repetition maximum bench press) and flexibility were assessed before and after the training period. Flexibility was assessed on 6 articular movements: shoulder flexion and extension, horizontal shoulder adduction and abduction, and trunk flexion and extension. Both groups increased strength and flexibility significantly from baseline and significantly when compared with the CG (p ≤ 0.05). The AST group increased strength and flexibility significantly more than the AA group (p ≤ 0.05) in all but one measurement. This study shows that resistance training can improve flexibility in young sedentary women in 8 weeks.
Many claims have been made about the effectiveness of Pilates exercise on the basic parameters of fitness. The purpose of this study was to determine the effects of Pilates exercise on abdominal endurance, hamstring flexibility, upper-body muscular endurance, posture, and balance. Fifty subjects were recruited to participate in a 12-week Pilates class, which met for 1 hour 2 times per week. Subjects were randomly assigned to either the experimental (n = 25) or control group (n = 25). Subjects performed the essential (basic) mat routine consisting of approximately 25 separate exercises focusing on muscular endurance and flexibility of the abdomen, low back, and hips each class session. At the end of the 12-week period, a 1-way analysis of covariance showed a significant level of improvement (p < or = 0.05) in all variables except posture and balance. This study demonstrated that in active middle-aged men and women, exposure to Pilates exercise for 12 weeks, for two 60-minute sessions per week, was enough to promote statistically significant increases in abdominal endurance, hamstring flexibility, and upper-body muscular endurance. Participants did not demonstrate improvements in either posture or balance when compared with the control group. Exercise-training programs that address physical inactivity concerns and that are accessible and enjoyable to the general public are a desirable commodity for exercise and fitness trainers. This study suggests that individuals can improve their muscular endurance and flexibility using relatively low-intensity Pilates exercises that do not require equipment or a high degree of skill and are easy to master and use within a personal fitness routine.