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Mixing Up Pilates With Equipment

Posted on 1st April 2019 by

Pilates is a great whole-body conditioning class, which can be done in many different ways. Our classes here at goPhysio are mainly mat based, however, we like to mix things up to ensure you get the most out of your classes and add different challenges and keep them varied.

One way in which we do this is to use small pieces of equipment. Using equipment has many benefits it can be used to assist you, and/or give you more of a challenge.

There is a lot of different pieces of small equipment that can be used in our Pilates classes. Here’s a few examples of some of my favourites!

Resistant Exercise Band

Exercise bands are a great to use, as we can use different strength bands depending on what we are trying to achieve. Clams can be made harder by tying the band above the knees to add resistance and to really get your gluteal muscle firing. Roll ups can be a challenging exercise however, we can use a strong band to assist you to achieve a full roll up. 


The ‘Magic Circle’

The Magic circle-this is a great piece of equipment, although some would say they are a bit like Marmite; personally, I love using them! They add great resistance, making you work that little bit harder and ensure that you really feel which muscles you are working. 


Gym Balls

Pilates ball is always a fun class with the added balance component to compete with, in some exercises. The pilates ball can allow you to do exercises in a seated position, whilst having to engage your muscles to keep you nice and stable on the ball. 

goPhysio Gym Ball Pilates

Weighted Balls

The weighted pilates ball adds increased resistance and challenge. The balls come in different weights so you can pick which weight you are happy with. The balls that we use weigh from: 0.5Kg-1.5kg 

Pilates balls goPhysio

So, if you would like a bit more of a challenge or are struggling with an exercise, ask your Pilates instructor about the different types of equipment that you could use in your class.

Written by Graduate Sports Therapist & Pilates Instructor, Francesca 


Top 3 Pilates Standing Exercises

Posted on 1st April 2019 by

This month, Physio and Pilates Instructor, Chris, has chosen his top 3 Pilates exercises you can do in standing.

Our mat based classes (as the name suggests!), involve a range of mat exercises in sitting, lying on your back or side. However, Pilates exercises done in standing are very important too. Doing these exercises will engage and work different sets of muscles.

#1 Arm Openings Level 1

  1. Start in a natural standing position.
  2. Lift your arms forwards to shoulder height, shoulder width apart, palms facing inwards.
  3. Level 1:
    • Inhale, rotate the thoracic spine, head and neck to the right, keeping the pelvis still. Let your right arm follow the movement of the spine while reaching forwards with your left arm.
    • Exhale, rotate your body back to the midline, allowing your arm to follow the movement to resume the starting position.
    • Repeat up to ten times alternating sides.

#2 Foot Series

  1.  Starting position in a natural standing position. Centre engaged.
  2. Inhale to prepare.
  3. Exhale, bend your hips and knees 45 degrees.
  4. Inhale, peel the heels off the floor, keeping the hips and knees bent.
  5. Exhale, straighten your hips and knees, keeping the heels lifted.
  6. Inhale, lower the heels to return to the starting position.
  7. Repeat up to ten times and then reverse the direction of movement.
  8. Watch points:
    • Keep your back in a neutral position, so don’t bend forwards or backwards from the spine.
    • Aim to rise and lower largely on the vertical plane only. No shifting of the center of gravity.
    • Try and keep your big toe on the floor.
    • Control the lowering phase slowly.
    • Avoid locking your knees.

#3 Side Leg Lift Level 1

  1. Starting position – Right lunge. Left leg extended to the side, with the tip of the big toe resting on the floor. Trunk hinged forwards from the hips at around 45 degrees. Hands on waist. Centre engaged.
  2. Inhale to prepare.
  3. Exhale, reach your left toes away and then lift your left leg horizontally up from the hip, keeping the pelvis stable. Hold.
  4. Inhale, reach and lower the leg to the floor.
  5. Repeat up to ten times and then repeat on the opposite side.

Read More 

We have lot’s of informative and educational Pilates articles over on our blog, which you can find here

If you’re interested in finding out more about joining our specialist Clinical Pilates classes at goPhysio in Chandlers Ford, take a look at the details of what we offer, our timetable of over 20 classes a week and more information about getting started with Pilates.