What is really going on in a Pilates Studio?

Well as you can imagine this joke gets made a lot😊, and if you have been in a Pilates studio you know exactly what I mean. All the springs, straps and chains, what could they be for? Let’s take a little tour and I will introduce you to the equipment.

The Mat

It may look like an elaborate mat with a foot strap at the end but really that is just there to assist your movement. Sometimes there is a weighted bar off the side. The nice thing about the mat workout is that you can do it anywhere.

The Universal Reformer

This is a wheel based piece of equipment that has a mat/carriage on top that glides in and out white sitting in a wood or metal frame. Traditionally, it has 4 springs but can be modified to have 5 underneath it to provide resistance with handles and leather straps. It also has a box that sits on top of the carriage for work that we call the short or long box series. You will also find a wooden dowel, gondola pole, black pads, and extension straps. There is a footbar and head rest. The reformer moves in and out – the only thing we change is how the body relates to the carriage. I think this piece of equipment has a huge fun factor!

The Wunda Chair

Joseph Pilates’ original design was that this would be a chair that everyone would have in their living room. You could use it to work on your strength and flexibility while watching TV. Then you could flip it over and use it as a piece of furniture. The chair has 2 springs and the pedal that moves up and down. It is not a fancy piece of equipment but it sure is challenging.

The Cadillac or Tower

The Cadillac resembles a four-poster canopy bed frame that has many things that can attach to it. The Tower is a metal tower that has a mat attached to it. It is like half a Cadillac. There are all kinds of springs on this piece of equipment. There are leg springs, arms springs, there are springs from above, springs and from below. There is a rolldown bar, handles, a push through bar, trapeze bar and safety chains. This is usually where the jokes begin.

Other items that you may find in some studios are a Ladder Barrel, Magic Circle, Ped-O-Pull, Foot Corrector and Toe Corrector.

All of these items are tools to assist me in creating uniform movement. You will find that many of the exercises are performed on every piece, however, with a little difference in the relationship to the equipment.

I hope that you will join me for a tour and a movement experience!

Let’s get together and make our ARC!