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What to Expect From Your First Reformer Pilates Class

by Alice Scott on Monday 24 February 2020


At first glance the Reformer Pilates machine can be intimidating, but we promise you the Reformer machine isn’t as scary or confusing as you might first think.

Our Reformer Intro classes help unveil the mystery of the machine, and breakdown the basics you will need to start your Reformer Pilates journey.

The benefits of Reformer Pilates are almost endless. Some members begin Reformer Pilates to regain strength after an injury, some members discover Reformer from a recommendation by a physio or doctor, for others it’s to find out for themselves what everyone has been raving about!

Reformer Pilates offers a full body workout that is low impact, it’s suitable for all different fitness capabilities and extremely versatile, and no two classes are the same. Once you start it’s hard to stop. Reformer Pilates goes beyond just building a solid core; it builds a solid foundation from head to toe.

What to Expect From Your First Class

Be prepared with a pair of socks. We recommend wearing Grip Socks for the best class experience. You may also like to bring along a water bottle to hydrate and a small towel in case you love to sweat!

As you arrive to the studio you’ll be greeted by the Reformer Pilates coach. Coaches are typically ready and waiting for you 15 minutes prior to class, so this is the ideal time to have a conversation about any conditions or concerns, past exercise experience, or any injuries you have. Once you’ve been checked in, it’s time to enter and get down to (Reformer) business.

Our Reformer Intro classes are to set at a slower pace than our other Reformer class styles; the vibe will be welcoming and supportive. Our goal is for you to enjoy the learning process. The beginning of class you will be introduced to the basic parts of the Reformer machine. You’ll be taught how to set up the Reformer to your personal height settings, followed by understanding how the springs work. The springs function as the weights of the machine; they create the unique pull/push resistance felt during the exercises.  The coach will give you tips on how to safely and efficiently prepare the Reformer bed for the start of class.

Now that the Reformer bed is locked and loaded, it’s time to warm up and start to move your body. Typically Reformer Intro classes will start with a warm up of a low impact leg exercise called Footwork, which is an excellent exercise for a beginner to start to understand how the carriage moves against the spring load, whilst creating heat throughout the body. Following from the warm up, you will move your body in all directions, led clearly by the coach.

You’ll move your body in ways you may not have moved before, so we breakdown the exercises in easy to follow steps. The coach will offer more demonstrations so you can see the movement and technique focus, which will deepen your understanding of cues given by the coach.

Reformer Intro classes also dive into the technical aspects of the exercise and body placement. To support this, the coach will oftentimes offer manual feedback and manual assists to help with body awareness and technique.

Be prepared to explore a variety of exercise positions, from laying down, to standing and sitting. Certain exercises may seem familiar, such as Squats, or Push Ups! Whilst other exercises will probably be brand new, such as the Feet In Straps or Short Box series.

I’ve Got a Unique Condition – Can I Still Do Reformer Pilates?

Exercises will be layered and broken down to facilitate a successful and safe learning process. Some exercise will be modified and adapted for certain members, whilst other members may start to explore the full expression of a particular exercise.

No matter your experience or fitness level we will offer exercise options to support your needs and help facilitate the first steps in understanding the Pilates principals without feeling overwhelmed.

Intro Reformer classes are programmed for you to learn at your own pace. The goal is to build strength, mobility, flexibility and body awareness; these are the key foundations needed to move into a more dynamic Reformer class.

How many Intro Classes Should I Take?

There is no magic number of how many Reformer Intro classes a beginner should do. If you’re inspired to attend classes consistently, start with an achievable goal of 2 classes per week. After 3 to 5 Reformer Intro classes, you may be feeling more confident to move up the Reformer ladder and try a dynamic Reformer class.

Reformer Intro classes will evoke a newfound sense of body awareness and strength in an environment that is fun, safe and encouraging. It’s the perfect launch pad to begin your Reformer Pilates practise.

Reform the Way You Move

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Not a Virgin Active Member?

Book in for a free guided tour. We'll show you all the facilities and answer any questions you may have. No obligation. Just lots of smiles. We'll call you to book your visit at a convenient time.

Book a Tour