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How Pilates keeps you going during Chronic Fatigue

Updated: May 2, 2023

By Emily Finlayson, Payne Therapies owner, Myotherapist and Pilates instructor



When I first started practising Pilates as a young teenager, my focus was to gain strength and condition my body to enhance my performance as a race walker.



In year 11, I had just won my first Victorian track and field race, and the following week I was diagnosed with glandular fever. It worsened into chronic fatigue in year 12, and I spent three more years dealing with it.


Chronic fatigue made me feel lethargic and impatient, and I had a foggy mind. I constantly battled a roller coaster of thoughts whenever I considered exercising: "will it be too much?"; "will I end up back in bed?"; "am I being lazy?".


Occasionally, I got out and ran or went to the gym. When I did, sometimes I felt great and other times I would end up in bed for a week.


Pilates, however, was one of the only forms of exercise which kept me going and didn't knock me back down. Pilates had me focusing on me, and kept me in tune with my body, doing the best I could under the circumstances.


I thank Pilates Every. Single. Day. for providing me with a form of exercise that always lifted me up, and helped me to be a better person, mentally and physically.


I’m sharing my experience of chronic fatigue to show you how Pilates can support you, even when you’re managing a chronic illness.


For me, chronic fatigue forced me to stop many things I loved, however, it made me slow down, focus on my career and myself for a while, and my gosh it made me stronger and I am grateful for that.




Pilates is a powerful healing tool for your body and mind


Pilates was a powerful healing tool for me during this time, and it has continued to be.



Pilates can support you to:

  • de-stress your mind and body

  • build or rebuild your physical strength, even after illness, injury or pregnancy

  • learn to breathe deeply and bring you calm (which you can use in stressful moments)

  • be present in the moment and move your body with purpose.


Do you need a powerful tool to support you through chronic illness or the general stresses of life? Come and join us in our Pilates classes, we would love to welcome you.



We run group classes with a maximum of five people, so your instructor (Meet the team!) can make sure you have the correct form to avoid injuries, tailor exercises to support your health needs, and get the most out of each session.


Check out our class schedule to find times that suit you. If you plan to attend classes regularly, we offer special class packs.



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