No doubt about it, nursing is an extremely demanding profession. Not only is it mentally demanding, but physically demanding as well. After a stressful 12 hour shift working out is the last thing a nurse may want to do because their body aches from a hard days’ work. Keeping healthy by working out is something all nurses know to do, but just don’t, either because of the long hours or the feeling of being hit by a Mack truck after their shift.
Incorporating a Pilates routine a few times a week can help decrease strain, strengthen muscles and prevent potential work-related injuries. Take these benefits of a regular Pilates routine into consideration:
No impact: This is a no-brainer when it comes to working out. As a nurse your body probably takes a pounding during an average shift. Your workouts shouldn’t cause more damage to your body than an average workday.
Pilates uses your own body weight as resistance for the workouts so you don’t have to worry about any jarring movements causing damage to your body.
Increased flexibility: Pilates incorporates many stretches that, over time, will increase your flexibility. Flexibility is important since nurses typically do lots of bending and stooping during their shift.
Strengthen core/improve posture: When you strengthen your core, your back is automatically stronger as well. Having a strong core and back helps nurses when you have a job that involves a lot of lifting and physically assisting patients. In addition, an improved posture gives makes you stand taller and gives an illusion of weight loss.
Tone: Although Pilates is a no impact workout it does allow for full body toning. Pilates makes one more aware of their body in general and the muscles used to carry out movements during a workout. Most all exercises in Pilates involve very slow and controlled movements meaning that you must also contract your core at all times. Small, slow, controlled movements can help tone your body in ways you would have never imagined.
Lose weight: In addition to all of the other awesome benefits you reap from Pilates, you can lose weight! Depending on which type of Pilates workout you do, you have the potential to burn massive calories. Pilates can be divided up in two basic types: ground work and machine (or Reformer) work. The workouts carried out on Reformers use pulley’s and springs to add more resistance to the already challenging workouts increasing the calorie burn factor.
In addition to working as a FNP, Nachole Johnson is a freelance copywriter and an author with her first book, You’re a Nurse and Want to Start Your Own Business? The Complete Guide, available on Amazon. Visit her ReNursing blog at www.renursing.com for more ideas on how to reinvent your career