I want to do Pilates – how should I start?

Initially (back in 1920s and ’30s) Pilates classes only used the larger equipment that Joe Pilates created: such as the Reformer, Cadillac and the Wanda Chair – or versions of. The larger Pilates specialist equipment was designed by Joe Pilates to work muscles to increase their length under load without negative impact on joints, in a fully supportive environment that promotes symmetry and balance of muscles, and increases control from the core musculature (abdominals, pelvic floor, and intrinsic back muscles).

We recommend that if you want to start Pilates to rehabilitate from an injury or condition then you start with these larger equipment based sessions initially. These classes have a maximum of only 4 people at one time, and also can involve 2 or 1 person only working with an instructor.

To start with equipment classes you begin with a “Starter Package” of 3 Private classes and 1 Semi-private (up to 4 people at the one time) class. Then you may progress into whatever class format you wish.

The Matwork Pilates classes are group classes that involve a series of exercises performed on a mat on the floor. These mat classes (as they are known) evolved from the warm up classes Joe would run for the forerunners of the New York City Ballet and then strengthening classes at Jacob’s Pillow in Massachusetts for the dancers during summer and winter breaks.

We’ve taken these classes to situations not common in the ACT or Australia – with a “Men’s Class” that is formulated specifically for the male physique, “fusion classes” that are half cardio-vascular and half Pilates Matwork – to lead to a full workout. We offer an Advanced Matclass that is for Instructors or people who have been doing high level Pilates for a number of years; pre-natal Pilates classes for those who are pregnant but want to remain strong and vital.

The “Fundamental” class on a Friday lunchtime is perfect for people who want to use Pilates as a cross training tool, or enjoy it once a week or who may have pre-existing injuries.
At Pilates Canberra these classes have a maximum of 16 participants in Barton. We keep the numbers small to ensure good instruction.

Some specialist Mat classes at Pilates Canberra include:

  • Pilates Fusion: for those who ware after overall fitness in their lunch hour
  • Pre Natal: is for pregnant women who want suitably qualified Pilates Instructors to give them exercise and to guide them along their 3 trimesters with Pilates matwork and small apparatus
  • Men’s Pilates Classes: is a class that uses the Pilates Matwork to lengthen muscles and to increase range of motion functionally and safely in joints but also recognises the physiological differences between men and women

To begin the Mat classes you need to commence with a “Concepts Class” and then you may move into whichever specialist class of your choice OR the Fundamental Mat class.

The Reformer Classes offer a group format for learning Pilates with a maximum of 6 participants. All participants perform the same exercises in a flowing format; however the skilled Instructors offer progressions or modifications to participants as they see fit to enable an effective workout for each.  The Reformers provide resistance for participants to work against and therefore can offer immediate strengthening benefits.

For these Reformer classes you must begin with a “Concepts Reformer Class” and then you may move into the Reformer or Mat class of your choice.

Many clients do a mixture of equipment based studio classes and mat classes and for that reason we discount the cost of Mat classes for all studio clients.