How to get moving with Chronic Pain

We know it can be hard to get moving with Chronic Pain, let us show you how!

Extensive research shows us that the most effective treatment for chronic pain is a multi-pronged approach with exercise being a key component.

People with chronic pain often find that exercise can increase their symptoms. So what type of exercise to do? How often? How long for?

Let’s dig a little deeper.

The most common area for chronic pain is the back and neck with about 4 million people affected in Australia. GP presentations for chronic pain have increased by 67% over the last 10 years (just come straight to Physio!).

 “Any single treatment in low back pain is never enough by itself,” says Associate Prof Michael Vagg, a pain medicine physician and Dean of the faculty of pain medicine at the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists. “Exercise is a fundamental part of recovering from low back pain and managing it if it becomes persistent.”

But it is common for people living with chronic pain to be wary of exercise as they may feel that movement or exercise may increase their pain. So the first challenge is to get moving in a safe, sustainable way. We want exercise to make us feel better and not have increased pain after exercise.

So if exercise is so important, what type of exercise is best?


A review of multiple studies published in October in the Journal of Physiotherapy showed evidence suggesting that Pilates has the most significant effects on pain intensity compared to other types of exercises. 

Pilates originally focused on the stability and mobility of the body, particularly the spine, core and pelvic area. Clinical Pilates at All for One uses this foundation and our clinical knowledge to strengthen muscles related to your injury or pain. 

It is also advised to strengthen lower limb and gluteal muscles because these are the muscles we use when we bend or move from sitting to standing. “If they are underdone, the back muscles have to work harder.”


How to get started?

One thing we see very commonly as Physios is people with chronic pain trying to get started with exercise and experiencing an increase in symptoms. This is generally due to doing too much too soon. We have to start with the Goldilocks rules – not too easy, not to hard… just right! 

It is very important to get started at the right level, intensity and focusing on the right areas before building up and working towards your goals. 

At All for One, we run Clinical Pilates classes for people with chronic pain and injuries. These classes are small group classes where you have your own individual program targeted at exactly the right level and areas for you. These classes are designed to get you moving, build your strength, flexibility and confidence. Your physio will be able to guide you through any flare ups and progress your exercises to work towards your goals, whatever they may be. 

The most important thing is that you keep moving long term in a safe, sustainable and enjoyable way.

The first step is to come in for a 1:1 Physiotherapy assessment where we will get a full history and do a full assessment to establish a starting point and put together a program for you.

Meet our Physiotherapy team here


To book Clinical Pilates Yarraville or Clinical Pilates Hampton East Click Here 

Have any questions? Contact our Yarraville or Hampton East Physiotherapy teams at or or you can call 8319 9945 

We can’t wait to help you get stronger, healthier, pain free and enjoying life!