Pilates Sample Class: Group Reformer

Maintaining safety and control can be tricky in any group exercise class. Keeping sessions fresh, motivating and unintimidating is equally challenging. Add in a moving carriage, loaded with springs, and sometimes a box and a multitude of other props and you see why linking exercises efficiently is critical when teaching a group reformer Pilates session. In addition to understanding the objective and muscle focus of each exercise, generating flow through proper sequencing can be imperative for an effective workout. This article will review several unique exercises, specific to the reformer, which when linked in the order they are described will add dimension and zest to your group classes.

A Class That Flows

Before starting any program, be sure to consider your clients’ goals and take into account any limitations and contraindications by providing appropriate modifications. Always set up clients for success. Promote clean execution and extrapolate maximum work out of each repetition by applying all forms of cuing; the art of providing proper cuing—along with multilevel assists, progressions, regressions and modifications—is crucial to your clients’ success during Pilates sessions.

Time permitting, include functional elongation and full-body integration to create a well-rounded program. Feel free to segment out each of these sequences and use them individually in private equipment-based Pilates sessions.

To see photos of warrior and deltoid reach with lateral flexion, go to www.ideafit.com/group-reformer-harmony-moves.

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Erika Quest

IDEA Author/Presenter
Erika Quest is the owner of Studio Q Pilates Conditioning in Laguna Beach, California. As a former a... more less
July 2012

© 2012 by IDEA Health & Fitness Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

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Article Comments

Lynda Lippin
On Jul 13, 2012
This is simply NOT a safe nor well thought out Pilates routine for a group class. It is dangerous, overly complicated, and only the footwork is an actual Pilates exercise. I have been teaching Pilates and Fitness for close to 24 years and am horrified that you are putting this out as a safe flowing Pilates progression suitable for group fitness classes. Shame on you Idea!
Lynda Lippin
On Jul 13, 2012
The more I talk to other Pilates teachers live and on social media abut this, the more horrified I am that nobody from IDEA is replying to my comments here and on Facebook. We all agree that this workout just isn't appropriate in any way, shape, or form.
Enja Schenck
On Jul 13, 2012
Hello, this routine is dangerous and has nothing to do with Pilates. Unnecessary use of props, an overhead exercise that is considered advanced in classical Pilates and should not be done in a group setting, complicated setups of exercises unclear why done on a reformer.

I expected more from an established institution like Ideafit. Please feel free to get in touch to discuss, Enja Schenck
Melanie Johnson
On Jul 14, 2012
I agree 100% with Lynda Lippin and Enja Schenck! As a long time member of IDEA(1985) and a certified Pilates instructor, I have come to expect well researched articles from you. These are not safe, appropriate or actual Pilates exercises. You have many comprehensively certified Pilates instructors in your member base. Please reach out to us, we would love to help with authentic Pilates ! Melanie Johnson.
Kate Watson
On Jul 16, 2012
Hi Everyone,
Sorry you've been left hanging--we've all been busy with our summer convention and its aftermath. I have alerted the author to your comments and am sure she'll respond. Thanks for your patience. Kate Watson, Managing Editor, IDEA Publications
Erika Quest
On Jul 16, 2012
Thank you all. I appreciate your comments and detail. This class should be only taught in a highly advanced contemporary environment and the title of the article should have spoken more so to that audience. Please accept my apologies, and I respect your viewpoints and agree that IDEA should reach out to the authentic audience of members as well. I would love to read your article contributions as you have much to offer. Well wishes, Erika
Lynda Lippin
On Jul 23, 2012
Thank you Kate and Erika for your responses. First off, how does one contribute an article, as I would love to? Second, whether authentic or not, this is a highly advanced workout that I still maintain is not class-appropriate in a gym environment. And frankly, at NO POINT in the article do you mention that this "should only be taught in a highly advanced contemporary environment." Kate, what percentage of the ACE/IDEA audience teaches in that environment?

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