There is not just one Pilates Exercise Machine.
Joseph Pilates developed a whole repetoire of exercises on a variety of equipment to work towards a more pain-free and balanced body.
Every body is different and so being able to utilize such a variety of Pilates exercise machines we can then begin to train our bodies in a variety of different positions for better spatial awareness.
Listed below I will explain the benefits of using each one of the pieces of Pilates equipment.
THE PILATES REFORMER:
The “Reformer” as it is known, is probably the most well known of the Pilates machines. It has a sliding carriage and uses spring tension and straps for your hands and feet.
The Pilates Reformer, like most of the other Pilates equipment helps to improve your core strength and, in turn your balance and posture.
You can see Joe Pilates balancing on the Reformer to the left pulling straps.
The Reformer can be purchased inexpensively for home use starting at around $400.
To reform or realign your body to its healthy shape it is best to have some lessons with a qualified instructor.
An instructor's watchful eye can help correct imbalances, increase function, and decrease inappropriate activation of muscles.
The Pilates Wunda Chair:
The Pilates Chair is probably my favorite Pilates exercise machine to work on. It is also what Joseph Pilates hoped that every home in America would have in their living room.
It resembles any chair you might have in your living and so can fit in with most decor. His hope was that we could all exercise while watching t.v. or just visiting.
The “Chair” as it is known also utilizes spring tension and the exercises can be challenging: lying on your back and stomach, seated, standing, and kneeling positions that are both demanding and energetic movements.
The “Chair” is probably the most under-utilized Pilates Exercise Machine to work on, mostly because it is misunderstood. It tests your coordination, fluidity and efficiency to minimize wasted muscle activity and to develop a smarter body.
Many of the chairs come now with the split pedal to work out the side of the body individually. Specifically the arms and legs.
The Cadillac was named by Joseph Pilates at the time when its namesake automobile was the prestige car in America. We still hope this Pilates exercise machine will carry on that same luster in the world of rehabilitative exercise.
The Cadillac traditionally was used for individually selected rehabilitation type exercises. It is still used that way today, as well as facilitating more movement and flow into the exercises.
Because of its design with railings high above it and on the ends it resembles a bed. This is originally where Joseph Pilates rehabilitated WWI interns, on their beds with springs.
Some of the exercises performed today on the equipment make you appear like a trapeze artist. Many students are thrilled by being able to perform exercises they never thought possible.
THE PILATES LADDER BARREL:
The ladder barrel is a Pilates exercise machine that can imimate many ballet stretches along with side balancing. This machine can put the body in great stretching positions for the spine and hips.
There is a ladder on one end with rungs and a big barrel about 3 feet away that can be adjusted for different sized people.
You can perform very graceful and flowing movements over this apparatus that help not only with flexibility, but also with balance and spinal articulation.
THE PILATES SPINE CORRECTOR:
This piece of equipment sounds a lot like some kind of horrible brace you’d wear to correct your back.
It is also known as the Arc Barrel which involves some very challenging exercises that one almost needs to start with a correct or healthy spine to perform them properly!
Many of the mat exercises such as the rollup, hip circles, control balance, and corkscrew can be performed on this Pilates exercise machine with your back supported on it and keeping your pelvis stable.
THE PILATES RING OR MAGIC CIRCLE:
This is a very versatile and inexpensive piece of home Pilates equipment that you can buy for around $25. It is as the name says a big round ring or circle with tension and a padded area for the hands or legs to rest on.
The Pilates Ring is generally used in mat classes between the legs or hands to help stabilize the pelvis or scapula while working muscles in the legs and arms.
Because the cost of having your own home Pilates machine can become expensive, in addition to private lessons, you might want to check out the new ebook available here today.
There are over 40 detailed pictures and descriptions of Pilates exercises you can do at home for a fraction of the cost of an individual session.