What is reformer pilates, and why do I need it?

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There are two types of pilates – mat-based and equipment-based pilates. Equipment-based pilates focuses on similar moves to mat-based pilates but uses a range of apparatus to guide and support you.

At The Oast Osteopathy, our Pilates studio equipment includes reformer machines and other apparatus to provide you with a more focused workout and is more accessible than some mat-based Pilates moves.

The reformer machines add resistance to the Pilates exercises through heavy springs attached to the machine. This form of exercise is beneficial for people with limited mobility or who are building up their strength. The range of studio equipment enables more controlled movements for beginners and an extra challenge for more experienced students as you can use the resistance to either aid or challenge move depending how they are set up.

Whole body workout with reformer pilates

Equipment-based Pilates exercises focus on working muscles through a range of different motions, which will help you to build and tone specific muscles without putting too much strain on weaker areas. The exercises our instructors take you through will give you a full body workout and help you to increase stability throughout your joints with specific individualised movements. Equipment-based pilates tends to concentrate on working on the whole body, covering many more areas than you would typically with mat-based pilates. Where you have a particular weakness or imbalance, it is possible to focus on this and correct the issue.

Equipment-based pilates (sometimes known as reformer pilates) is a great way to help improve your strength, flexibility and balance, which in turn will lead to better posture, movement and mental health.

Why we recommend Equipment-based Pilates

  1. It builds strength and tones muscles without strain

This form of pilates allows you a whole body workout while strengthening muscles. The reformer machines are super flexible and can be applied in many different ways to achieve the same effect, which leads to a more interesting and creative session.

  1. It’s a low-impact workout, perfect for injury recovery

While high intensity, reformer and equipment pilates is low impact, so is usually suitable (with professional guidance) for anyone recovering from an injury. The resistance springs can be adjusted, and platforms repositioned to enable you to work out without feeling uncomfortable, avoiding weight bearing through your body.

  1. It’s great for your core strength

As with all Pilates, many of the exercises focus on building core strength and improving your posture. Reformer machine and equipment-based Pilates exercises work peripheral postural muscles at the same time as working your core – sometimes you are so busy focused on the activity you don’t even notice it!

At the Oast Osteopathy in Sittingbourne, we have a Pilates Equipment studio which includes the following apparatus:

Reformer Cadillac

Wunda Chair

Arc barrel

Ladder barrel

These pieces of equipment are suitable for everyone from beginners to advanced and will help you keep your moves precise.

These sessions are held as 1:2 or 2:1 private sessions or small group regular classes with a maximum of 5 people per session. You can find out more and book your session here.

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