I confess that my first exposure to Pilates was my senior year of college,during which I wanted to take a class that would
further my aspirations for a healthy body and mindpad my schedule without too much effort.Surprisingly,I ended up getting really into Pilates,and have taken classes here and there for years.However,I knew there was another aspect to the practice besides mat,so I decided to take on the Pilates reformer...and here's what happened.
This isn't me in the photo.How do you know?Because I looked significantly more like an awkward turtle.
The Workout:Similar to the mat Pilates you're used to doing at the gym,but the mat is replaced by equipment that looks like it'll eat you if you don't use it properly.
Having practiced Pilates for the last few years,I always thought work with the Pilates reformer was for after I'd mastered the mat technique.How wrong I was: I wish I'd had experience with the reformer years ago so I knew what it felt like to do the mat movements correctly.I worked one-on-one with trainer Tamika Walker atTrue Pilates New Yorkto focus on toning and shaping.Settling into working with the equipment was a bit challenging,but having a personal trainer made the experience much easier.As much as I was working myself,I was also learning about my body,my muscles and what body part actually does the work—turns out you can really feel when you're using the correct form.(Spoiler alert: I hadn't been.) Working with a Pilates reformer definitely can't be a one-off experience,and you'll only get out of it what you put into it.
Intensity Factor:5/10.Pilates has a mental intensity factor that's unique to the technique;your muscles certainly do burn (although not likea boot camp),but staying keyed into your form for the entire hour is just as tough.
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