Pilates machines versus Pilates classes

Filed under: Pilates Info — Wayne on March 24, 2010

In last night’s episode of Supersize vs Superskinny, TV presenter Anna Richardson was shown using a Pilates machine in a London venue and asked the question whether they really work. The conclusion from the serial dieter was that the Pilates machine did work her muscles and she certainly seemed to get a real sweat on.

With shopping channels such as QVC pushing Pilates machines, this begs the question: are Pilates machines at home better or worse than going to a local Pilates class?

A Pilates machine can help to support a client and ensure they go through the right range of motion however, without the right instruction or initial supervision it is possible that a client may overstretch themselves or injure themselves if not careful.

Most Pilates instructors would probably advise that a Pilates machine is a waste of money because you actually don’t need much equipment to practice it at home. However, some people like to buy equipment because it motivates them into doing something when they have to look at it every day.

Pilates classes in Pilates classes pilates classes Pilates classes are an ideal way to ensure you learn to do Pilates properly but they offer more advantages than just this. Doing Pilates in a class environment means you get time to yourself away from work and the everyday stresses of home life. You get to meet new people and even make new friends. From an exercise point of view, you can see first hand how to do an exercise in more detail than you could from a DVD and ask questions if you like. If you are not quite in the right position then an instructor can help you correct the movement in much the same way as you can do exercises in the gym and think you are following the instructions but a personal instructor can see you are arching your back or over-reaching and remind you to correct this.

With Pilates classes you can also progress if you wish, moving to advanced stages or advanced Pilates classes and the instructor can help you to know when this is appropriate, rather than just guessing that you feel ready.

Many people who attend Pilates classes choose to have basics like a mat at home or a Pilates DVD or machine for when they want to do extra work or cannot make it to a class, and these are fine once you are confident or for when there is no class available – but for many there is no substitute for Pilates classes.

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Charlotte Hopkinson