Reformer Interval Class

Monday, June 24, 2013

Interval Reformer Class

I was on my way to work, not sure of what I was going to teach my Reformer Class when I came up with this plan...

There are 4 sets of intervals, each exercise takes 1 minute then repeat each interval 3 times.  There is a 'rest' period between each set of 3-5 minutes while you explain and set up the next set.


Warm up:  Whatever you think is appropriate.  Eg. Breathing, Mermaids, Hip Rolls etc.

Interval One

  1. Footwork (anything you like)
  2. Shoulder Bridge prep (2 feet/1foot/pulses)
  3. Running
Interval Two
  1. Spine Twist sitting with Punches (1 arm)
  2. Reverse Knee Pull (Bilateral/ unilateral/oblique bias)
  3. Push Ups 
Interval Three
Sitting on Box:
  1. Back Rowing prep #3:  Aeroplane
  2. Back Rowing prep #1:  Lat Pull
  3. Back Rowing prep #5:  Triceps
Interval Four
Platform extender infront of platform:
  1. Leg Pull Front prep (hands on extender - add legs extending back)
  2. Abs (Single or Double Leg Stretch/Obliques/Hundreds - change each set)
  3. Side Splits #5:  Carriage Leg Pressing
Cool Down:  Stretches, Roll Down etc.

Real Men do Pilates

Monday, October 01, 2012

It's true!  Many instructors are a little dubious teaching male clients as they are worried that the workout won't be hard enough for them.  This is fair enough in some ways, but men, like women, all have room for improvement.

Male clients usually attend Pilates for injury prevention or management.  Rarely do they realise that Pilates can do so much more for them.  Improve balance, movement efficiency, coordination, flexibility and strength.  

Try to stay away from too much 'girlie' choreography for the blokes.  Simplify some of the moves to contain less choreography so that they don't feel silly.  Implement some exercises that focus on global muscles to give them the 'grunt factor' they they often respond well to.  Vary this with eccentric work to teach the concept of controlling load and the dynamic aspect of plyometric training is not only fun but also hard work!

Real men do Pilates.  Jo was a bloke too!

Keep Young and Beautiful

Monday, September 17, 2012

"Keep young and beautiful, if you want to be loved", from the 1933 film, Roman Sandals

Pilates is a great way to achieve this!  (Although I have seen a lot of clients and students with furrowed brows at times).  Pilates gives the clients improved proprioceptive awareness, more mobility and strength.  Builds lean muscle mass and can be adapted and modified to suit any body.

Dare I say it, but there are many things that go very well as an adjunct to Pilates to keep us young and beautiful.  Activities such as yoga, doing personal training sessions, walking/swimming whatever takes your fancy!  It is important to keep your body agile and constantly challenged to keep it amazing.

Obvious things such as eating well, meditation, taking the time to not only smell the roses, but maybe pick some too!  Will help to keep our spirits healthy which leads to happy hearts and bodies.

How to Correct

Monday, September 03, 2012

Correcting a client can be a little tricky at times.  The first thing that is important for the client to understand is that the correction is a positive change, rather than a negative one.

One of the main things for an instructor to keep in mind is to be respectful.  Whether you are offering a tactile or a verbal correction please keep in mind to approach it positively and in a way that will (hopeful) suit the client/s.  Here are some extra things for you to think about:

  • Give the client a prop to assist/resist them during the exercise
  • Alter the pace of the exercise to change the challenge
  • Using positive words such as "Try to (...)" or "Think about (...)", rather then "don't" or "stop"
  • If the client is becoming frustrated then move on...

What is Pilates?

Friday, July 20, 2012
I sometimes am asked the old question, "What is Pilates?" Surprisingly, I still find it difficult to answer...To me, Pilates can be many things. Something that can take a frail person and turn them into someone with confidence. An athlete from injury to full recovery. An everyday person from immobile to mobile. It can transform people to have no pain, better quality of life and of course, strength gains.

I still find it difficult to sum up in 15 words, or less what it is I can actually do for people.

Years ago I had a client whom I saw twice a week for well over a year. He had funky neck pathology and despite all of my care, correction and re-education, would still regularly re-injure himself. I asked him once why he kept coming to Pilates and his response really surprised me. He said that he kept coming back because I made him laugh! You mean I put all that time and effort in to educate you and all you wanted was to smile?

I guess Pilates can be whatever your client needs it to be for them. I think that we just have to try to be aware as to what that is.

Set yourself a challenge

Friday, July 13, 2012
When you are teaching loads of classes it is hard to stay interested in what you are doing. I really am impressed by people who teach 15+ classes/sessions per week! Not only is it hard to stay motivated and creative,but also it it tricky to stay inspired! I try to set myself a simple challenge every now and again, just to keep me on my toes...

Try teaching a class that has no flexion, or a session on the reformer using only one spring. What are your thoughts on ways to stay inspired?

Ageing Posture

Friday, July 06, 2012
It’s amazing how we age, or rather, what makes us look as though we have…

I was at a family function recently and although it has only been a couple of years since we all caught up, what amazed me was how people looked older from a distance, but much the same up close. This intrigued me until I realized that it all came down to their posture!

Yes, the women and men in my family have recently been ‘too busy to look after themselves’ and have started to collapse, slowly, into their pelvises. I too am guilty of this at times, but it amazed me to see it in so many of my family members.

Anti-gravity muscles (global stabilizers) are very important for us as they help to maintain our beautiful structure and protect it from harm and give us stability.

Stand tall people! Elongate your spines! A cue I often use with clients is to ask them to imagine their pelvis is a boiling pot of soup and they have to draw their spines away from the broth, lest they be cooked! (Very dramatic!)