Mat Pilates or Pilates Reformer exercises each have their pros and cons. The better choice depends on your needs.
Mat Pilates requires less equipment and can be performed at home or in a group setting. As a result, there is not as much supervision of your form. Ideally, you would use this Pilates method after being thoroughly trained in the Pilates basics by an instructor to ensure you engage the correct muscle groups.
To perform exercises on a Pilates reformer, you must invest by either buying your own or attending a class. However, Pilates reformers are excellent for strength building and injury rehabilitation. Moreover, instructors at studio Pilates reformer classes pay close attention to your movements, ensuring you are getting the most out of your practice.
What is mat Pilates?
Mat Pilates is as straightforward as it sounds. It is an approach to Pilates that involves performing most of the sequences on a Pilates mat instead of a Pilates reformer.
The practice typically incorporates other forms of Pilates equipment like bands, stability or exercise balls, and a Pilates magic circle. This simple equipment requirement means that you can easily do mat Pilates at home or in a studio group setting.
What muscle groups do Pilates mat exercises target?
Pilates mat exercises target the same muscle groups as all forms of Pilates practices. These muscles include the pelvic floor, abdominal, and back muscles used to support the spine and core.
Additionally, mat Pilates includes movements geared towards giving practitioners a total body workout like lunges and planks.
What are mat Pilates exercises for abs?
Sexy six-packs are for the dedicated weekday warriors, not just the rich and famous. Pilates mat exercises are a fabulous way to transform your core. Below are some of our favorites to get you started.
What are the mats on the market for Pilates, and why?
Yogis beware, a yoga mat will not suffice as an adequate substitute for a Pilates mat. Pilates mats are half an inch thicker than yoga mats and much denser.
Manufacturers build Yoga mats for balancing in standing poses. They structure Pilates mats with floor work in mind.
To practice mat Pilates comfortably and correctly, practitioners must have a Pilates mat. So, without further ado, we outlined our top three picks to help you choose wisely.
- Deluxe Pilates Mat: This mat is durable, affordable, and chic. There’s not much more we could ask for in a beginner Pilates mat.
- Manduka Prolite Yoga and Pilates Premium Mat: This thick, non-toxic, eco-friendly mat is super dense and non-slip. Meaning you can get down on the floor and work those sequences comfortably.
- Aeromat Elite Workout Mat: Cost-conscious shoppers will be happy to know this is our best overall pick. Reasonably priced, high-quality, and thick, this no-slip Pilates mat will keep you comfortable for countless sweat sessions to come.
What is a Pilates Reformer?
The Pilates reformer is a type of Pilates equipment created by Joseph Pilates. Pilates built his original models using hospital beds and springs.
As a result, the modern Pilates reformer looks like a bed with springs. The bed-like structure is called a sliding carriage. There are also ropes and pulleys attached to the apparatus.
The Pilates reformer’s purpose is to act as a versatile piece of equipment that practitioners can use to target specific muscle groups for strength and flexibility building exercises.
The Reformer allows individuals to do many exercises lying down, making it a fantastic piece of equipment for injury rehabilitation exercises.
Is Reformer Pilates a good workout?
Yes, like all forms of Pilates, reformer Pilates is an exceptional total body workout. Pilates reformer exercises place particular emphasis on engaging the muscles that support the core and spine.
Reformer Pilates exercises improve strength, posture, balance, stability, and alignment. The Reformer’s ability to isolate exercises to certain parts of the body makes it a rehabilitation go-to.
Practitioners can work through imbalances carefully and gently as they lay prone. Moreover, the no-impact quality of this workout is good for injury prevention.
Meaning practitioners can focus on building strength and muscular endurance frequently and consistently on the Pilates reformer without fear of developing overuse injuries.
Which Pilates Reformer machine is the best?
If you’re interested in purchasing a Pilates reformer for your home, we suggest making sure the machine meets the following criteria:
- Designed for fast, easy spring changes
- Smooth, non-bulky feel
- Utilizes front and back for exercises
Our top two picks meet the above criteria: the balanced body studio reformer and the Merrithew at Home SPX Reformer Bundle. These machines are an investment just like a cycling bike or a treadmill. So, be sure to do your research to make sure you find the one that best suits your needs.
Whether you’re interested in learning more about mat Pilates or Pilates Reformer, the MatWorkz Pilates studio instructors are here to guide you. Join us in using the power of movement to strengthen and heal our minds, bodies, and spirits.