Effects of 8-week Pilates exercise program on menopausal symptoms and lumbar strength and flexibility in postmenopausal women.
J Exerc Rehabil. 2016 Jun ;12(3):247-51. Epub 2016 Jun 30. PMID: 27419122
The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of an 8-week Pilates exercise program on menopausal symptoms and lumbar strength and flexibility in postmenopausal women. In total, 74 postmenopausal women were recruited and randomly allocated to a Pilates exercise group (n=45) and a control group (n=29). Menopausal symptoms were measured through a questionnaire, while lumbar strength was measured through a lumbar extension machine, and lumbar flexibility was measured through sit-and-reach and trunk lift tests performed before and after the Pilates exercise program, respectively. The Pilates exercises consisted of 7-10 min for warm-up, 35-40 min for the main program modified from Pilates Academy International, and 5-7 min for the cool-down, and were performed 3 times a week for 8 weeks. The results showed a significant decrease in menopausal symptoms except urogenital symptoms. Also, the results presented a significant increase in lumbar strength and flexibility after 8 weeks of the Pilates exercise program. We concluded that an 8-week Pilates exercise program is effective in decreasing menopausal symptoms and increasing lumbar strength and flexibility.