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What Is A Pilates Reformer?

Joseph Pilates created the reformer, a simple flat frame with a platform or carriage. The carriage glides back and forth the frame on runners, under different tension settings.

At Bend + Mend we use the Reformer for guided exercise sessions, under the direction of a Physio. With an emphasis on postural control, it is a safe, fun way to exercise through rehab to full function offering a low-impact workout that is kind and supportive on the joints whilst providing a challenging workout to support and strengthen the whole body.

What is a Reformer?

The platform is called the carriage, and the carriage is attached to one end of the reformer by a set of springs. The springs allow you to adjust the resistance to the carriage, which will be pushed and pulled along the frame by your own body weight and strength. There are also cushioned shoulder blocks on the carriage that keep you in a stable position and prevent you from sliding.

Our reformers have a spring resistance system providing a variety of tension options to work with. During your session, your Physio will assist you to adjust your springs and resistance level for each exercise during your session. You may use just one spring or a combination of lighter and heavier springs together.

There is a footbar at the end of the reformer, an adjustable bar that can be upright, angled, or folded flat. Your feet or hands will be placed on this bar depending on the exercise.

The reformer also has long straps with handle loops on them that your feet or hands can be placed into; these are at the top of the frame. The springs can be adjusted to affect both the footbar and the handles, to modify the workout for different skill levels and body types.

Who can do Reformer Pilates with a Physio?

Reformer Pilates with a Physio can be a great workout for anyone, as both the equipment and the exercises can be adapted to all fitness levels; from teenagers to seniors and elite athletes to people with a more sedentary lifestyle. Our Physiotherapists are trained using the reformer and can lead you through rehabilitation exercises for your injury and pain or guided-reformer fitness sessions for strength, conditioning, and general well-being.

What are the Benefits of Reformer Pilates?

Reformer workouts focus on core strength and proper muscle engagement which improves athletic performance, back pain, injury recovery/prevention, weight loss, balance, bone density, and posture to name a few. It is a movement system designed to better our everyday life and well-being. It is fantastic for increasing strength, tone, balance, flexibility, and mobility – leaving you with a body that feels connected and strong. The adjustable springs allow us to continually challenge you by increasing the load, using the springs and the weight of your own body to provide resistance, gradually progressing you to more advanced exercises under the supervision of your Physio.

Additional benefits of the reformer include:

  • Core strength and trunk control
  • Improved bone health
  • Targeted strengthening
  • Tendon loading
  • Improved coordination
  • Improved continence control⠀
  • Specific sports rehabilitation

Examples of exercises on the reformer?

  • Foot series (Leg press)
  • Bridge series
  • Legs in straps
  • Lunges/Scooters
  • Arms in straps
  • Plank series
  • Glute series

Among many others!!

Book in for a One-on-one Pilates Assessment one of our Physio’s at Bend + Mend to experience all the benefits of the reformer!

Clodagh Gray

Clodagh completed a Bachelor of Physiotherapy at University College Dublin, Ireland and graduated with a first-class honours degree. She worked in both the private and public setting in Ireland for 2 years before relocating to Sydney to expand her career. Clodagh loves working with people of all ages and activity levels to help them overcome injuries, aches, and pains and to make sure they are feeling their best and healthiest version of themselves. She has worked with a diverse caseload including sports injuries, orthopaedic surgeries, chronic pain, paediatric and geriatric patients. Clodaghs approach to treating patients is evidence based with patient-centred goal setting to obtain optimal results for her patient’s specific needs.Clodagh is an APPI certified Pilates Instructor and believes that movement and exercise is medicine. She is passionate about holistic health and utilises a range of different treatment options to ensure her patients can enhance their movement, reduce pain and ultimately get back to what they love doing. She uses a combination of exercise prescription along with manual therapy and dry needling techniques for pain management, improving function, injury prevention and rehabilitation.

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