Pilates Reformer equipment is one of the most popular amongst all the Pilates equipment. You can find this type of Pilates class all around in Singapore, especially in the CBD area. But it can be intimidating if it’s your first time seeing this machine. The straps, multiple springs, a moving carriage, and a metal bar at the end could mean that you’re in for physical torture in your Pilates class.
And when you see the complex exercises done on it, you’ll start to think that this Pilates class is not for you. But the Pilates Reformer exercises are not as challenging as one would think as long as you go through a good process of systematically learning the movement.
One can learn the Pilates Reformer exercises by mindfully repeating the movement more in the session and going back into it the next session doing the same movement. Dedicating a few weeks to learn these exercises and practicing them regularly will produce faster results.
Is a Pilates Reformer class suitable for beginners?
Not all Reformer classes are suitable for beginners. If it is your first time joining a Reformer class, you should look for one that is designed primarily for beginners. Though some of the classes are multi-level, which can accommodate first-timers in the session, it can still be challenging for you to catch up with the exercises once the class has picked up its pace.
Using the straps, changing the springs, and adjusting the bar can be quite overwhelming, especially halfway through the session when you start to feel fatigued from the exercises.
We offer a Reformer Fundamentals class at our Pilates studio in the CBD area, which is best suited for beginners. This session starts with a few mat exercises to warm the students up so they will become more aware of their bodies. This is then followed by a quick introduction of the parts of the Pilates Reformer and how to adjust them.
The exercises will be slow, and the instructions are very clear for first-timer to catch up. Though this session is meant for beginners, experienced practitioners can still benefit from the session to revise the fundamental movements. And the session can still give you a good workout overall.
Is Reformer Pilates better than Mat Pilates?
Doing the Pilates exercises on the Reformer machine will give you more variations of the exercises, making it more versatile than the Pilates mat exercises only. Because of this, it can accommodate a complete beginner or a very advanced practitioner into the program.
For example, an overweight student may have a hard time doing mat exercises mainly because one has to overcome the resistance of one’s weight, whereas the intensity in doing the exercises on the Pilates Reformer machine can be adjusted by the set up of the springs and bar adjustments to make it easier or harder.
Furthermore, the design of the Reformer machine will give you more feedback on your alignment thus, it will result in better symmetry in your movement.
What are the different types of Pilates Reformer classes available in Singapore?
The common types of Reformer classes will be based on the level or goal of the session. The names can vary from one Pilates studio to another but there are some of the common names that can give you clues on the intensity of the class. Here are some common examples.
Intermediate to advanced Reformer class names
Advanced class names
Weight Loss Reformer
Advance Reformer class
Fat Burn class
These names are based on my opinion and research and it is best to call the studio where you plan to attend your Reformer class to confirm which class is suited to your level and goals.
What is the difference between Reformer Allegro and Reformer Strength Series?
At UMove Fitness Pilates Studio, aside from the Reformer Fundamentals class that we offer for beginners, we have 2 other classes which are the Reformer Allegro and the Reformer Strength Series class.
The Reformer Allegro class is a common class in Pilates studios for the past two decades. This class is generally meant for experienced practitioners that have done introductory classes in the Reformer machine. The exercises in this class can vary from one teacher to another, and from one studio to another.
So this type of class is pretty dependent on the experience of the teacher handling the session.
The Reformer Strength Series on the other hand is a very structured Reformer class that we offer at UMove Fitness that is designed to make you stronger faster. This class will have the same list of exercises for 6 weeks regardless who’s teaching the class.
The program starts either the first day of the month or on the 16th day of the month depending on the cycle. And aside from having the same exercises for 6 weeks, this class will feature fewer exercises in the session, thus the students will have more time to practice the movements. This will result in better understanding of the exercises and faster progress in strength.
Another advantage of this kind of programming is that both beginners and experienced Pilates practitioners will benefit from the class. The beginners will be able to understand the exercises as it is repeated every session, and the advanced attendees will be able to work on the more advanced variations of the exercises as they know that it will be covered again the next class.
How many times a week do you need to attend a Pilates Reformer Class?
A beginner should attend a Reformer Pilates class regularly for at least 3x a week to facilitate a better learning process. Doing Pilates exercise doesn’t end in just doing the movement, but it is on learning more about your body, being aware of it and controlling on how to move it better.
So, practice has to be done regularly, and if possible in the same type of class. Shifting from one class to another may be more interesting as it gives variety to your program, but it will be detrimental to learning especially for beginners.
So to summarize it all, in order to learn faster and have a more effective Reformer exercise programming, you should look for a level that is suited for you, learn the exercises by repeating them more often, and give it some time at least for around 6 weeks to get the movement into the body.
If you want to try our Reformer Pilates classes, you can get our 3 Reformer Introductory package to experience our classes. See you there.