The Best Reformer Pilates Accessories 24 Sep

The Best Reformer Pilates Accessories

5 Props To Grow Your Pilates Practice

Bring the bespoke studio to your living room with our edit of the best tools and kit for your home. . 

Dynamic Pilates TV’s practice keeps your body and mind guessing with the innovative use of Pilates accessories. Mix up your current home practice; build a leaner and stronger body with some of these props chosen by Korin and Tiffany. 

  1. Magic Circle 

The Magic Circle is a small but effective tool, created by founder Joseph Pilates, that’s intended to help practitioners find their center. It’s also known as a fitness circle, Pilates ring, or fitness ring, but “magic circle” is the preferred name within Pilates. 

Korin says, “the Magic Circle is a great tool to challenge your regular Reformer workout, we use it in fun variations, such as the Rock n Ring class, Magic Circle Flow, Jumping Magic and Bikini Body Bliss. Old favorites feel brand new with the addition of the circle which represents your Powerhouse so that whenever you squeeze it, you feel your center.”

A magic circle provides muscular feedback and gentle to moderate resistance during a Pilates exercise. It is not intended to provide a heavy strength workout. 

Grab your magic circle and let’s create some Reformer magic. Watch all of our Magic Circle classes HERE. 

Which Magic Circle should I buy? 

DPTV’s Magic Circle of choice is the Ultra-Fit Circle. It’s specifically designed for home use and is made of flexible plastic with a soft, rubberised shell. Padded handles on both the inside and the outside of the ring offer superior comfort. Resistance is approximately equivalent to a 3-band Spring Circle. 15″ (38 cm) outside diameter.

Available in two sizes: 

Ultra-Fit Circle® Regular

  • Good for larger body types and broad shoulders.
  • More resistance provides more challenge.

Ultra-Fit Circle® Mini

  • Perfect for smaller body types and narrow shoulders.
  • Easier lower body work due to smaller size.
  • Achieve better leg alignment with feet directly under hips.
  • Light resistance is great for beginners.
  1. Small Pilates Ball/ soft ball 

“This is the number one prop I believe everyone should have.” Says Tiffany, “a small exercise ball can help you improve your abdominal, upper body, and lower back strength and flexibility.” When shopping for an exercise ball, look for ones made with strong, burst-resistant material.

Korin and Tiffany find a new way to use your small Pilates ball in their Soft Balls Hard Core, video and TIffany’s personal favourite, The Warmup!

The Togu from Balance Body is DPTV’s choice of prop, the perfect size, shape and texture for improving your Pilates technique. Soft and flexible, it conforms to the body and provides excellent feedback for core exercises including abdominals, oblique abdominals, back extension and lateral flexion. Durable and strong enough to kneel on, it can also be used as an unstable surface under the torso, foot, or knee. Quickly inflates (up to 12 inches/ 30cm) and handily deflates, to desired level of inflation.

View all of our classes where a soft pilates ball is used HERE.

  1. Resistance bands 

Resistance bands are a simple and versatile tool, since they use constant tension to stimulate muscle growth – without putting strain on your joints. They can improve mobility, flexibility, and strength, and have been proven to be a “feasible alternative” to lifting weights when it comes to activating your muscles, according to research published in the Journal of Human Kinetics. The study compared muscle activation during upper-body strength exercises with resistance bands vs. weights, and found the results to be very similar. They believe that the instability created by the bands is what causes muscle fibers to work harder, in some cases, than with free weights.

What resistance band should I buy? 

We recommend the Hip & Booty Resistance bands available on DPTV’s website. We regularly use resistance bands within our Reformer classes, find great examples of them being used in the Loopy Legs, Booty Band Delight and Barre Sculpt Two videos. 

View all of our classes where resistance bands are used HERE. 

  1. Dumbbells

Lightweight dumbbells will add some extra muscle toning potential to your practice. Depending on the exercise, we use dumbbells to target muscles in your arms, back, shoulders, chest and down into your core. Tiffany adds, “in true Pilates style, we practice resistance on both the exertion and release. That way we use eccentric contractions that build long, strong muscles.” One of the reasons DPTV uses lighter weights is to control the challenge level and not invite muscle use that is out of balance with the exercise. Also, even if the weight is light, hand weights will create extra stability work for your shoulders, core, and pelvis. Watch Korin and Tiffany demonstrate this in the DPTV Bring the Bounce, HIIT HOP and No Springs No Problem Flow. 

These Reebok soft grip dumbbells are ideal for Pilates, as they are covered in a comfortable EVA foam and have an adjustable hand strap to personalise them to the correct fit. Available in three light weights, 0.5 kg, 1 kg and 2 kg.

Watch all of our workouts with dumbbells HERE. 

  1. Swiss Ball  

Also known as a pilates ball, a Swiss ball can be made part of your Reformer Pilates routine, in fact, many Pilates routines will already advise the use of a swiss ball. Check out Korin using her Swiss ball to build core strength in the Double Ball Whammy Workout video. 

What is the best Swiss Ball to buy?

We recommend the eco-friendly Trideer Exercise Ball which is made from extra thick, hypo-allergenic material.

There’s no better workout method than Reformer Pilates, together with these props, Dynamic Pilates TV will provide you with a killer mix of strength, mobility, balance, coordination, flexibility and breathwork. 

Sources:

J Hum Kinet, 23 March 2018 NCBI, Muscle Activity in Upper-Body Single-Joint Resistance Exercises with Elastic Resistance Bands vs. Free Weights <https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5873332/> 

What_to_expect_at_your_first_reformer_Pilates_class 10 Sep

What to expect at your first reformer Pilates class

If you’re thinking about taking a reformer Pilates class, but you’re not sure what to expect – you’ve come to the right place. The first time you take any new fitness class it can be slightly intimidating, but the good news is Dynamic Pilates TV classes are for everyone!

There are some misconceptions surrounding reformer Pilates, like needing to be ‘in shape’ and at a high fitness level, but this is not true. The Pilates philosophy is to build a strong core and then progress outwards.

What is reformer Pilates? 

To put it simply, reformer Pilates is Pilates performed on specialist equipment (the reformer), which allows for a more targeted and dynamic workout. Incredibly effective, Dynamic Pilates TV (DPTV) classes are a time-efficient full body workout, improving your strength, flexibility, posture and of course your mental health! 

It may help to know a few things before your first Pilates reformer class. We spoke with Pilates experts and Dynamic Pilates TV founders, Korin and Tiffany to get the rundown on what to expect at your first class. 

Five things you need to know before your first Pilates reformer class:

  1. Wear fitted clothing. 

Korin believes this is an important factor, she advises you wear tight fitted, comfortable clothing – such as lycra leggings and a fitted top. Korin explains, “this is not only for comfort and ease of movement, but to allow the instructor to see the shape and alignment of your body – in Pilates we focus on alignment, technique and posture – and all of these details need to be seen.” If you have a good instructor, you can expect the trainer to be correcting you, helping you stay aligned. 

For a better performance we recommend you invest in some anti-slip, gripped socks, such as Toe sox, for stability and for hygiene too. 

The editorial team at Stylist magazine have put together a roundup of the best sustainable and ethical brands to wear during your workout, and we quite like them too:  

  • Girlfriend Collective turn old plastic bottles and fishing nets into bras, leggings and shorts you’ll never want to throw away.
  • Manduka’s leggings are sourced from environmentally responsible materials.
  • Tala is an affordable, new brand made from plastic bottles.  
  • Silou is produced with dedication and care in sweatshop free production houses. 
  1. You will sweat! 

A lot! Especially if you’re taking a DPTV class. Tiffany explains, “as an intelligent workout, DPTV is choreographed to eliminate the start and stops you usually find in a fitness class, so your body is working longer – for a better overall workout.” 

Korin adds, “we like to think outside the Pilates box, DPTV has a contemporary feel as we blend exercises together; adding bosu balls, jumpboards, hand weights and resistance bands – making our classes a little bit different, keeping it fresh and fun!” 

Be sure to stay hydrated and have a towel handy.  

  1. This isn’t a mat class. 

The exercises that are taken from the mat to the reformer machine will seem more challenging. While the movements may be small and performed slowly – they’re controlled, to target specific muscle groups, many of which you may never work in your usual fitness routine. Reformer classes introduce a whole other element too, utilising the machine to add resistance and leverage to certain exercises. 

If you have a good instructor, they should be correcting you to improve your alignment technique – something to be aware of as this will probably differ from your usual mat classes. 

  1. When in doubt, slow down. 

Slow and steady wins the race. Tiffany recommends that “for the best results, concentrate on your form, not your speed. Considered, controlled movements target your muscles and provide the most gains for your efforts.” 

  1. You’ll be working your pelvic floor muscles. 

In Pilates we talk a lot about the pelvic floor and the importance of using these muscles. At DPTV we focus on supporting these deep abdominal muscles in every class. Korin explains that, “many people do not realise the importance of the pelvic muscle – these exercises are essential to maintain good posture and support the internal organs such as the bladder and uterus.” 

With a busy lifestyle, keeping your pelvic floor in tip-top shape doesn’t always come easy. In fact, according to the The Telegraph: “an estimated one in three women and one in 10 men have some sort of pelvic floor dysfunction.” 

The good news is that in many cases, this condition is treatable through exercise. Like any other muscle, your pelvic floor can be strengthened, but you need to be taught properly how to perform these exercises and engage your pelvic floor correctly – That’s where Dynamic Pilates TV comes in! This will benefit your workout and overall core strength considerably. 

 

Why DPTV is great for beginners 

As a DPTV member you will have access to weekly updated classes, ranging from 30 mins to one hour, as well as shorter ‘flows’ and fantastic beginner classes – providing you with plenty of options to make your first few classes a lot less daunting. 

If you’re a beginner to reformer Pilates and are thinking of joining DPTV but have some questions, feel free to contact Korin and Tiffany through our support page here or direct message our Instagram page here. 

Take advantage of the FREE 14 Day FREE Trial and explore our videos library & we look forward to welcoming you to your first DPTV class! 

If you liked this blog post you may be interested in reading more on the difference between classical and contemporary pilates here. 

 

Sources

L.Faye, Stylist Magazine, Sustainable and ethical activewear for your next workout

<https://www.stylist.co.uk/fashion/ethical-activewear-uk-women-swimwear-gym-clothes-yoga-eco-environmentally-friendly-sustainable-green/226744> 

September 2016, The Telegraph, Why looking after your pelvic muscles is just as important as a gym workout <https://www.telegraph.co.uk/wellbeing/pelvic-floor-dysfunction/importance-of-pelvic-floor-muscles/> 

What_to_expect_at_your_first_reformer_Pilates_class 10 Sep

What to expect at your first reformer Pilates class

If you’re thinking about taking a reformer Pilates class, but you’re not sure what to expect – you’ve come to the right place. The first time you take any new fitness class it can be slightly intimidating, but the good news is Dynamic Pilates TV classes are for everyone!

There are some misconceptions surrounding reformer Pilates, like needing to be ‘in shape’ and at a high fitness level, but this is not true. The Pilates philosophy is to build a strong core and then progress outwards.

What is reformer Pilates? 

To put it simply, reformer Pilates is Pilates performed on specialist equipment (the reformer), which allows for a more targeted and dynamic workout. Incredibly effective, Dynamic Pilates TV (DPTV) classes are a time-efficient full body workout, improving your strength, flexibility, posture and of course your mental health! 

It may help to know a few things before your first Pilates reformer class. We spoke with Pilates experts and Dynamic Pilates TV founders, Korin and Tiffany to get the rundown on what to expect at your first class. 

Five things you need to know before your first Pilates reformer class:

  1. Wear fitted clothing. 

Korin believes this is an important factor, she advises you wear tight fitted, comfortable clothing – such as lycra leggings and a fitted top. Korin explains, “this is not only for comfort and ease of movement, but to allow the instructor to see the shape and alignment of your body – in Pilates we focus on alignment, technique and posture – and all of these details need to be seen.” If you have a good instructor, you can expect the trainer to be correcting you, helping you stay aligned. 

For a better performance we recommend you invest in some anti-slip, gripped socks, such as Toe sox, for stability and for hygiene too. 

The editorial team at Stylist magazine have put together a roundup of the best sustainable and ethical brands to wear during your workout, and we quite like them too:  

  • Girlfriend Collective turn old plastic bottles and fishing nets into bras, leggings and shorts you’ll never want to throw away.
  • Manduka’s leggings are sourced from environmentally responsible materials.
  • Tala is an affordable, new brand made from plastic bottles.  
  • Silou is produced with dedication and care in sweatshop free production houses. 
  1. You will sweat! 

A lot! Especially if you’re taking a DPTV class. Tiffany explains, “as an intelligent workout, DPTV is choreographed to eliminate the start and stops you usually find in a fitness class, so your body is working longer – for a better overall workout.” 

Korin adds, “we like to think outside the Pilates box, DPTV has a contemporary feel as we blend exercises together; adding bosu balls, jumpboards, hand weights and resistance bands – making our classes a little bit different, keeping it fresh and fun!” 

Be sure to stay hydrated and have a towel handy.  

  1. This isn’t a mat class. 

The exercises that are taken from the mat to the reformer machine will seem more challenging. While the movements may be small and performed slowly – they’re controlled, to target specific muscle groups, many of which you may never work in your usual fitness routine. Reformer classes introduce a whole other element too, utilising the machine to add resistance and leverage to certain exercises. 

If you have a good instructor, they should be correcting you to improve your alignment technique – something to be aware of as this will probably differ from your usual mat classes. 

  1. When in doubt, slow down. 

Slow and steady wins the race. Tiffany recommends that “for the best results, concentrate on your form, not your speed. Considered, controlled movements target your muscles and provide the most gains for your efforts.” 

  1. You’ll be working your pelvic floor muscles. 

In Pilates we talk a lot about the pelvic floor and the importance of using these muscles. At DPTV we focus on supporting these deep abdominal muscles in every class. Korin explains that, “many people do not realise the importance of the pelvic muscle – these exercises are essential to maintain good posture and support the internal organs such as the bladder and uterus.” 

With a busy lifestyle, keeping your pelvic floor in tip-top shape doesn’t always come easy. In fact, according to the The Telegraph: “an estimated one in three women and one in 10 men have some sort of pelvic floor dysfunction.” 

The good news is that in many cases, this condition is treatable through exercise. Like any other muscle, your pelvic floor can be strengthened, but you need to be taught properly how to perform these exercises and engage your pelvic floor correctly – That’s where Dynamic Pilates TV comes in! This will benefit your workout and overall core strength considerably. 

 

Why DPTV is great for beginners 

As a DPTV member you will have access to weekly updated classes, ranging from 30 mins to one hour, as well as shorter ‘flows’ and fantastic beginner classes – providing you with plenty of options to make your first few classes a lot less daunting. 

If you’re a beginner to reformer Pilates and are thinking of joining DPTV but have some questions, feel free to contact Korin and Tiffany through our support page here or direct message our Instagram page here. 

Take advantage of the FREE 14 Day FREE Trial and explore our videos library & we look forward to welcoming you to your first DPTV class! 

If you liked this blog post you may be interested in reading more on the difference between classical and contemporary pilates here. 

 

Sources

L.Faye, Stylist Magazine, Sustainable and ethical activewear for your next workout

<https://www.stylist.co.uk/fashion/ethical-activewear-uk-women-swimwear-gym-clothes-yoga-eco-environmentally-friendly-sustainable-green/226744> 

September 2016, The Telegraph, Why looking after your pelvic muscles is just as important as a gym workout <https://www.telegraph.co.uk/wellbeing/pelvic-floor-dysfunction/importance-of-pelvic-floor-muscles/>