Here’s everything you need to know about the Pilates Reformer Machine and how it will help your mind and body!

Chances are, you’ve heard of Pilates. The popular low-impact workout is comprised of a series of core exercises that helps flatten and tone your mid-section, as well as stabilise and support your spine and back but have you heard or practised Reformer Pilates?


The Reformer Bed was invented by Joseph Pilates during World War 1 and is a bed-like frame with a flat platform that rolls back and forth on wheels.

“It is an apparatus used as a part of a Pilates exercise session under the direction of an instructor that uses springs for assistance and resistance to achieve proper muscle length and strength in an organised way,” explains our instructor Chris.

“The reformer bed will assist the individual in achieving the goals of Reformer Pilates. We use lateral breathing to control the body’s posture through coordinated movements with an emphasis on postural control. Here at ReformME Studio in Formby, after much research, we made the decision to invest in the British manufactured Align Pilates Equipment – which we believe to be the most superior pilates equipment.

The platform is called the carriage, and the carriage is attached to one end of the reformer by a set of springs. The springs allow us to tailor each session to the needs and desires of the individual. We adjust resistance to the carriage, which will be pushed and pulled along the frame by your own body weight and strength. There are also shoulder blocks on the carriage that keep you in a stable and safe position.

At the end of the Reformer Bed is an adjustable bar that holds the springs. We use this to support your feet and hands depending on the exercise. The reformer also has long straps with handles on them that your feet or hands can be placed in to; these are at the top of the frame opposite of the footbar. The springs can be adjusted to affect both the footbar and the handles, to modify the workout for different skill levels and body types. In fact, the reformer is used not only by people looking to strengthen their core, but also by athletes for training and injury rehabilitation.


The beauty of Reformer is that it offers an amazing workout for your mind and your body. The Pilates reformer is best for individuals who are seeking to achieve core stability and good postural alignment. Both the equipment and the exercises can be modified and adjusted to any body, which makes it perfect for those looking to tone up, rehab from an injury, train for a particular hobby or sport, or for those looking for low impact, full-body workout.

Reformer Pilates work is low-impact and adaptable to all fitness levels so has become hugely popular with everyone from athletes to absolute beginners – including those who are gym and exercise phobics. It benefits everyone from teenagers to seniors and elite athletes to people with a more sedentary lifestyle.

Pilates reformer work focuses on core strength and proper muscle engagement which improves athletic performance, back pain, injury recovery, weight loss, balance, bone density and posture to name a few. It is a movement system designed to better our everyday life and physical and mental well being.

There are restrictions and modifications that we must be aware of. A Reformer workout should only ever be carried out with a fully reps-qualified instructor to prevent injury and strain on the body. The Reformer Bed is an incredible and effective piece of equipment however should always be used supervised.


You will instantly feel uplifted and invigorated after a Reformer Pilates session at ReformME.  The reformer accommodates a full range of motion, which is great for increasing flexibility while building strength. The pushing and pulling with the arms and legs against the resistance of the springs, carriage and body weight makes this a unique strength-building full-body workout that’s different from the regular Pilates exercises performed on the mat. Specifically, when you hold the straps in your hands or put your feet in the straps, you allow your muscles to extend to the fullest position. The reformer is able to target your arms and legs while still focusing on the core, providing a more comprehensive workout.

A recent study on Reformer Pilates exercises performed once per week for 10 weeks resulted in reduced fall risk and significant improvements in static and dynamic balance and functional mobility in adults age 65 and older at risk for falling. Another study showed that after twelve sessions of Pilates with the reformer equipment, there were improvements in lower back and shoulder strength.

You can expect improved muscular strength and muscular endurance and you will experience a far stronger mind-body connection. Visually, you will see strong and lean muscles with improved posture. With the focus on core stability and total body strength, Reformer Pilates will help to facilitate muscle activation and development to support proper spinal alignment.

To really see the benefits of Reformer Pilates, we recommend  2-3 sessions a week.

To find out more about booking a course, a private lesson or a beginners class, please click here.