How Reformers Will Take Your Pilates Workout to the Next Level

When Joseph Pilates devised his ‘Contrology’ workouts nearly a century ago, his focus was on creating a strong, healthy body. After a childhood mired in illness, he created a series of 34 exercises based on deliberate, controlled movement. These moves used bodyweight for resistance, and apparatus like the Reformer machine, designed by Pilates himself. The best Reformer Pilates classes in Dubai are still centred around these same exercises and the Reformer machine itself.

What Is Reformer Pilates?

Classic Pilates when performed on a mat is excellent for building core stability and strength, while developing flexibility, endurance, and bodily awareness. The required control and focus on posture, alignment, and proper breathing mean it’s great for everyone from beginners to pro athletes. Also an ideal exercise for rehabilitation after injury, and throughout pregnancy, mat Pilates is a wonderful low-impact workout for strengthening and conditioning the major muscle groups.
A Reformer Pilates workout uses the same core movements and exercises that are performed in mat Pilates, but done on a Reformer machine. A Reformer machine comprises a sliding carriage attached to springs to create variable resistance, as well as ropes and pulleys. While it may look somewhat intimidating, or even medieval, we promise that using a Reformer machine is fun!
When performing the Pilates exercises on a Reformer, you are no longer working against gravity in the same way as during mat work. This alleviates pressure on joints and through the legs, while the springs mean you select which muscle groups to work, and how hard.
This ability to vary resistance and form means we can target a far more diverse range of muscles with Reformer Pilates. The different levels of tension the springs can create also means we can completely tailor the exercises to your needs and goals.
By performing the classic mat Pilates exercises on the Reformer in so many more positions, immeasurably more variety of movement can be achieved. With the aid of the pulleys and ropes, the same moves can be performed on the back, side, stomach, seated, or even kneeling. This keeps the workout exciting and your muscle groups guessing!

Is Reformer Pilates Better than Regular Pilates?

Both forms of Pilates are excellent at building core strength, improving balance and flexibility, and reducing injury risk. Improved muscular symmetry and postural alignment as well as increased muscle tone provide protection for the body’s core. A reduction in back pain is another benefit often reported by practitioners, as when the deep muscles which support the spine are strengthened, the back is supported.
The extra tension and resistance that a Reformer can add means that you can push your workout that much further. More calories burned, greater endurance training, and even greater gains are all possible with a Reformer than when doing Pilates on a mat.
Since Reformer Pilates is performed on a moving carriage, this perpetual instability and dynamic movement requires constant balancing and coordination. We are demanding your body control the motion of the platform at all times- and keeping it from shifting while you move your body is hard work!
It’s not all endurance and muscle fatigue though- one of the greatest assets of the Reformer machine is: it’s great fun! Sliding backwards and forwards while your legs perform squats in the air is a fantastically freeing form of movement. Reformer Pilates is unlike any other workout in this regard, and we recommend everyone try it at least once.

Mat Pilates is ideal if you want a slower-paced workout with a greater focus on core strength and stability. Reformer Pilates provides a more dynamic, varied, and vigorous exercise class with a focus on a wider range of muscle groups. If that sounds like something that would suit you- or if you’re just looking for something a bit different- why not book a class today and find out what all the fuss is about?

The Transformational Power of Strength Training for Women’s Empowerment

Once upon a time, the thought of a woman doing strength training would have been absurd. Weight training was the domain of men, and muscles or strength were deemed unladylike. Thankfully, times have changed, and these ridiculous notions are a thing of the past. Ladies are now blessed with state-of-the-art facilities for women’s strength training in Dubai, no more so than at Platform Studios’ clubs. Women everywhere are discovering the myriad empowering benefits that a strength training routine can bring to every facet of their lives.


Should a Woman Start a Strength Training Routine?

The answer to this is clearly a resounding yes! Strength training involves forcing muscles to work against an opposing force such as free weights, resistance bands, or your own bodyweight. This then causes tiny amounts of stress to the muscle tissues, necessitating they adapt by building new, stronger tissue. As well as greater, stronger muscle mass, bones, ligaments, and tendons are also strengthened and reinforced.

The physical changes brought about by strength training bring a multitude of physiological benefits to the body. Bone density is improved, while blood pressure and cholesterol measurements are brought down. The added stronger muscles protect surrounding bodily structures from injury, reducing pressure on joints and any associated pain, especially later in life. The impeccable posture weight training requires is sure to have a beneficial impact on your posture in your day-to-day life, too.

For most women, modern life is all go, and keeping up can often feel challenging. Splitting our time between our duties at work, chores at home, and in the garden, while running around after children. It can be exhausting just thinking about all that, let alone fitting in hobbies and socialising as well!  And as we age, our diminishing strength and muscle mass can make keeping pace even harder. The improved fitness and stamina that strength training brings can help us breeze through our daily duties, and still have energy for fun in our free time.

Psychologically, too, the benefits of a strength training routine are plentiful. As well as lowering stress and cortisol levels, a weight training program will certainly boost your confidence. Being physically strong and self-sufficient is so empowering- not needing to ask for help lifting things brings a surprising amount of pride! Female strength training fans frequently describe feeling less vulnerable, and immeasurably more self-assured- like invincible superwomen even! The sense of accomplishment felt at lifting weights you previously couldn’t manage gives a sense of achievement week after week.


Does Strength Training Make You Bulky?

No, strength training will absolutely not make you bulky unless you deliberately create that look with exercises intended to increase mass. The bodybuilder physique takes a lot of careful, targeted work to achieve, and isn’t the result of a generalised strength training routine. You can use weights to change your body shape though. While exercise can’t target bodyparts for fat loss, increasing muscle mass in specific areas can certainly take you from pear-shaped to hourglass!

An increase in muscle mass also works wonders for helping to maintain a healthy body mass and composition. A better muscle-to-fat ratio means that there is less stress on your organs and heart, improving cardiovascular health. What’s more, muscle burns calories even when at rest, boosting your metabolism, meaning it’s easier to maintain a healthy weight.


Given it delivers such physical, mental, and lifestyle benefits, it’s a wonder strength training hasn’t been a go-to workout for women for longer. In terms of empowerment and improvements to confidence and self-esteem, it can’t be beaten. Why not seize the day and contact one of our expert strength training instructors to get started right away?

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