Reform Feel Good Factor
January 8, 2016
This week I embarked on my first class at Reform Studios. Beinga long time fan of Pilates, I was intrigued to learn of a fitness studio that offered a fresh take on the traditional physical fitness system developed in the early 20th century by Joseph Pilates.
What is Reformer Pilates?
In a nutshell, the method involves practicing Pilates exercises with the use of a ‘carriage’ – a state of the art machine from Balanced Body®. Slightly alien at first it takes a little getting used to, but with help and guidance from instructor Yvie, the carriage soon became comfortable. What struck me in this first session was how versatile this machine was; how it enabled the body to be challenged in limitless ways, throughout one continuous movement. The 55-minute workout addresses various elements harmoniously: it challenges the core, builds strength and flexibility, and enhances balance and coordination. I was impressed to observe there is a strong focus on correct alignment and breathing throughout, ensuring the workout is safe and controlled. This precision eliminates unnecessary damage and stress to joints, unlike other forms of resistance training. After my first introduction to Reformer Pilates I can say that the workout packs a punch, ticking the cardio box whilst also busily burning fat in the background! Unlike traditional Pilates which (in my experience) doesn’t quite provide that ever-illusive endorphin release, Reformer Pilates left me pumped and full of fresh energy.
Aside from Pilates, Reform offer the first and only Barre studio in Northern Ireland. The barre boutique workout created in Yvie’s native New Zealand, focuses on isometric ballet movements that fire up the muscles without tearing, creating a lean and toned physique. I envisage myself morphing into a graceful and poised ballerina! With no dance experience required, this class caters for all abilities and takes inspiration from traditional ballet techniques, whilst encompassing the principles and postural cues of Pilates. The music sets the pace for a fun cardiovascular, calorie-blasting session.
Lastly Reform also provide private and semi private classes for those individuals who prefer one-on-one training
or specialised guidance. With an emphasis on technique and engaging core muscles, these sessions are perfect for beginners right through to advanced Pilates gurus looking for a bit of variety from the norm! Private classes can be tailored to clients who are exercising with aliments or are recovering from injury, ensuring every workout suits a client’s level of fitness, experience and needs to maximise potential and results. The beauty of all Reform classes is that they adopt a holistic approach to wellbeing – mind, body and soul – creating a feel good factor we could all do with… I am already looking forward to my next class!
By Eve Brannon.