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My Pilates Journey Week 4 – Flying on the Contraption

8th August 2018

In my previous blog entries, I’ve discussed my experiences with Mat and Barre Concept classes at Bälans. This week I’ll talk about Apparatus, the class that I found the most mystifying upon encountering it.

My first impression of the Reformer used in Apparatus classes was that it looked like some elaborate torture appliance. While that clearly isn’t what it’s used for (thank goodness!), it is probably the least intuitive part of Pilates for beginners. I admit that in the first 2 weeks I was a bit reluctant to attend Apparatus classes because I was worried about holding up everyone else in class, and it seemed like an over-complicated version of Mat exercises.

My current opinion is actually the exact opposite: the Reformer is a great tool to prepare for more complex exercises, such as the Teaser (that requires faster movement, precision, and a strong core), or Pike and Peel (featured on the above photos).

I’ve been told that Joseph Pilates originally designed the Reformer to help people with injuries and disabilities that prevented them from successfully performing Mat exercises. It’s a device invented for rehabilitation, but as with any other form of Pilates, you can increase the difficulty so that even professional athletes would get a good workout.

I’ve done Apparatus classes led by many of the qualified instructors here at Bälans, but I’d like to talk about a class with a very different feel to it – one that was led by the Lolita’s Legacy instructors-in-training.

The Student Teacher Apparatus class was one hour long, split into three 20-minute sections, each run by Lynne, GG and Karin. While one person was teaching, the others adjusted our posture and encouraged one another. The class had a large variation of very simple and fairly difficult exercises, but they made sure to start with a warm-up and include cool-down at the end. They also pointed out different parts of etiquette that regular instructors aren’t that strict about (at least not in the level 1 classes), but it’s very important for their exam. Overall, the class was a very positive experience, I wish them good luck in becoming full-fledged Pilates instructors!

I'm almost halfway through my Journey! Click here to read a retrospection of my experiences thus far!


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