Pilates can benefit children in many ways

Lifestyle issues in young children and teenagers

Can pilates for children be of benefit for today’s issues? Childhood and teenage health is increasingly being impacted by our culture of convenience and sedentary activity. Eating fast food, long hours studying, watching TV and time on the computer and mobile phones have resulted in ever-increasing numbers of young children and teenagers developing issues or conditions related to weight, posture, injuries, motor coordination, low tone or musculoskeletal development.

Play is the natural way of tackling these issues

Of course a great way of alleviating this growing problem is to encourage our children to do what they do best – run, jump, skip, climb and play freely in an unstructured way. Playing sport is another more structured activity with numerous benefits for children. Kids need to get in touch with their bodies through being active with everyday activities. However playing games and sports may not be sufficient or even possible for some children who are dealing with particular issues or conditions.

Pilates for young children through to teenagers

We know what pilates can do for our adult clients and it can also offer a range of benefits to young children and teenagers. For example: improved posture and spinal alignment; increased strength and flexibility; balanced musculature; pain relief and reduced potential for injury. For more on the benefits of pilates for children see the article Pilates & our children: fitness for the future by Ken Endelman of Balanced Body.

pilates for children

Twelve-year-olds Mia Blight and Alice Harries practise hand exercises with instructor Tarryn Byron which may be useful in preventing pain from overuse of mobile phones in the future. Picture: Tim Marsden

Pilates classes designed for children and teenagers

Body Organics runs a range of pilates classes that are designed specially for young children through to teenagers. These specialised pilates classes are designed by our physiotherapists so they address the specific needs of those in the class. At our West End studio we have classes for:

Teenage girls
Designed to encourage a healthy approach to movement as a means of managing body function, body image and anxiety in young women (12–16 years). Excessive computer and social media time can lead to postural issues as well as issues with hands and wrists. This class benefits posture, strength and flexibility. For more on this issue see our post Finger fatigue in teenage girls.

Teenage boys
Teenage boys (12–16 years) with their sudden growth spurts can be affected by a variety of conditions that can affect their ability to fully participate in sports.

Kids 8–11 years
Taken by a physiotherapist, these 30-minute classes are designed to be fun and challenging, facilitate greater postural strength, and progress over ten weeks to build confidence in children aged 8–11 years.

Kids 5–7 years
Taken by a physiotherapist, these 30-minute classes are designed to be fun and challenging, build strength and confidence, and progress over ten weeks to help develop gross motor strength and coordination in children aged 5–7 years.

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