Actress Emma Bates on Pink Ribbon Pilates for Breast Cancer Rehab

Emma Bates is an actress in Hollywood who has guest starred in such shows as CSI: NY, Cold Case, Without A Trace, Monk and many others. She can be seen starring in the soon-to-be-released film South Dakota. In addition to using Pilates to help her stay in shape, she is also a certified Pink Ribbon Pilates instructor and counts being able to help women regain their health and well-being after breast cancer as an honor and a privilege. We at Celebrity Diagnosis are honored and privileged to count Emma as one of our new friends and she has kindly contributed the guest entry below in support of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Thank you Emma!

Pilates is the “go to” exercise method for a large, and growing, number of Hollywood stars. Jamie Lee Curtis touts it as “the only thing that changed my body” and Jennifer Aniston says, “I’m a Pilates person. It’s great. I had a chronic back, a pinched nerve and a hip problem and it’s completely solved all of it. I love it. It makes me feel like I’m taller.”

But did you know that now Pilates is being used to rehabilitate women who are breast cancer survivors as well? October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and I am excited to be guest blogging on Celebrity Diagnosis from Los Angeles to tell you all about the Pink Ribbon Program.

Doreen Puglisi is an exercise physiologist and Pilates teacher in New Jersey. While working with patients who were breast cancer survivors, Doreen saw a need to design a specific postoperative program for them. This need became even more pressing when she herself was diagnosed with breast cancer two years later and underwent a double mastectomy. Ultimately, this is what allowed her to design a program that she was able to test and revise using her own body as the gauge for effectiveness: “Pilates, itself, originated as a rehabilitation program. Based on its principles of proper alignment, stabilization, correct posture, improving flexibility and full range of motion without stressing the joints of the body, I believed it was a perfect fit for the rehabilitation of breast cancer patients.”

Not only was Doreen able to regain full range of motion herself with Pilates, but she was then able to use what she learned to start a certification program for other Pilates teachers and reach an even greater number of people. There are now over 200 certified Pink Ribbon Pilates instructors throughout the United States helping patients and hospitals navigate the transition between surgery and recovery. Check out the Pink Ribbon Program Postoperative Workout Enhancing Recovery for more info and to find an instructor near you.

Shape Magazine is also using Pilates to help raise awareness and funds for breast cancer this month with their Pilates for Pink program. Check out their site to find a class near you and join in to learn more about Pilates and help support an important cause.

Mark Boguski, M.D., Ph.D. is on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and is a member of the Society for Participatory Medicine, "a movement in which networked patients shift from being mere passengers to responsible drivers of their health" and in which professional health care providers encourage "empowered patients" and value them as full partners in managing their health and wellness.

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