“Physical fitness is the first requisite of happiness.” – Joseph Pilates
Pilates. It’s the exercise of choice for those looking to strengthen, balance, lengthen and tone. But when it comes to choosing mat or reformer – what are the main differences?
Reformer Pilates was invented by Pilates founder Joseph Pilates. The practice is on a bed-like frame that uses different weighted spring combinations to create resistance when we move the carriage back and forth.
Using a reformer bed means you can target those small muscle groups, which helps to form long, lean muscles. You can do more exercises than what’s possible on the mat and have a play with a wide range of movements – from sitting and lying on your back or side to balancing on your knees and using your feet.
It’s possible to get the exact same results from mat Pilates and reformer Pilates. The discipline was designed to build up strength in your body’s powerhouse or core. But if you’re looking for quicker results and more variation in class, reformers are the way to go.
The benefits of reformer Pilates
Many students come to reformer Pilates for injury prevention and rehabilitation.
Research shows the practice improve body awareness and spinal and pelvic alignment, which helps us to perform exercises without placing unnecessary stress on our muscles and joints.
Pilates has also been proven to help with treating hamstring and groin strains, and it’s also effective to manage and prevent lower back pain.
The practice has been found to:
- Strengthen major muscle groups
- Improve tone and assist in weight loss
- Build core strength
- Increase flexibility and range of motion
- Improve balance and stability
- Calm and focus the mind
Ready to try reformer Pilates at BodyMindLife?
Although the reformer beds can look a little intimidating, we have classes for students of all fitness levels and it’s easy to get started in one of our Syndey-studios or new Byron Bay Pilates Studio.
If you’re new to the practice, we’ve created a nine week program with our Pilates Align classes where each week covers a different principle.
It’s a chance to get back to basics, build from the foundations up, and is both a great introduction for new students and a refinement course for those with a regular practice.
The program covers all the exercises in the repertoire broken down into leg and footwork, hands in straps, feet in straps (including spinal articulation), lunge work, hip disassociation, lateral work and hands on bar work, short and long box work, arm work, and hip abduction and adduction work.
If you’re familiar with reformer Pilates and are looking for a dynamic class and workout, our Pilates Flow classes offer a challenging series of movements that work to strengthen, tone and balance.