This article began life as “The top 5 reasons you need to try Reformer Pilates”. However, as we started writing, it grew to Top 8, then 10 and that’s when we realised we needed to workshop the idea slightly. Most people have heard that Pilates is great but we wanted to dig around a bit more and see how it can help specific people, particularly answering the age old question – “Is reformer pilates good for weight loss?”. So, after a couple of weeks of research and a few hours spent with Emma, one of Pinnacle Health Clubs Reformer instructors, we narrowed down the key benefits of Reformer Pilates – one of them being weight loss, for each of the following groups…
- A recent study commissioned by Dove, found that – tragically – just 20% of Australian Women are body confident. Not only is Regular Pilates one of the best ways to change the shape of your body but the small group sizes offer opportunities to build friendships – which is heaven for boosting self-confidence!
- Most women will confess that their most loathed body part is their stomach – Pilates is amazing for the Abs! By combining rigorous workout routines with a healthy diet, reformer pilates and weight loss go hand in hand.
- Pilates urges you to focus on your breath and be aware of your body, forcing you to forget about every day mundane tasks or any drama in your life for a whole 50 minutes. Bliss!
- If you find weight lifting equipment intimidating or tedious, Reformer Pilates is a great alternative for any sort of muscle toning you’re looking to accomplish.
- With numerous AFL footballers singing the praises of Pilates, more men are getting involved. “The male Pilates faithfuls that I know not only attend for injury rehab and prevention, but love how they progress each session” Emma says. “In a typical Reformer session, you work the same muscles just in different ways and, as you get more advanced, so too do the exercises”.
- Many runners have weak glutes, causing the lower back and/or hips to overcompensate – reformer pilates benefits include building strong glutes.
“All our muscles are connected through our core – try doing a lunge without your abdominals and you’ll fall over!” explains Emma. “Pilates focuses on building a stronger core so you can run better and faster.
- Plus, by working in small groups or one-on-one with a Pilates instructor, you can learn moves that improve performance not just for running, but any sport of choice.”
- Reformer pilates helps keep muscles flexible, reducing pain or stiffness in the body.
- Specific Pilates exercises help stabilise the pelvis making it easier to lift heavy weights or produce maximum power.
- Regular Pilates has been shown to improve brain activity, increase alertness during the day and enable restful sleep.
- A large focus of Pilates is also on improving postural problems which are often exacerbated where awkward postures are present, such as slouching at your desk.
- If you’re spending all day sitting at a desk, a healthy diet and former pilates can make a real difference in crunching calories.
People with injuries
- Back pain will affect between 60 to 80 per cent of us at some point in our lives. Pilates focuses on your core, strengthening your abdominals and back muscles, providing the perfect environment/techniques for injury recovery (and prevention!)
- With little to no impact on joints during a typical Reformer Pilates session, muscle & bone wear and tear is greatly reduced
People who feel unfit
- Using the different springs for resistance levels, Reformer Pilates can be adjusted to fit any current fitness levels.
- As it is individualised to you, each session can progress in difficulty as your fitness, stability and strength improve.
- A 50-minute reformer pilates class can burn anywhere from 150-300 calories depending on your intensity.
To recap, regular Reformer Pilates helps build a stronger core, improves posture, mood, body shape & muscle tone, increases flexibility, builds optimal health and helps you to move more efficiently. All of this, combined with a healthy diet can aid in achieving weight loss goals. It also takes stress off joints and bones whilst providing a challenging, overall body workout. Really, there are no excuses NOT to give it a try.
*Results may vary. Exercise and proper diet are necessary to achieve and maintain reformer pilates and weight loss and/or muscle gain over an extended period of time.