Pilates allegro class on the Reformer

Pilates on the barrel

Pilates on the combo chair

Pilates on the combo chair

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Pilates Equipment

"I invented all these machines. Began back in Germany, was there until 1925 used to exercise rheumatic patients. I thought, why use My strength? So I made a machine to do it for me. Look, you see it resists your movements in just the right way so those inner muscles really have to work against it. That way you can concentrate on movement. You must always do it slowly and smoothly. Then your whole body is in it." Joseph Pilates

Joseph Pilates working on the cadillacThe equipment Joseph Pilates invented is sometimes said to be distinctive or unique, but many of the pieces appear to be derived from pre-existing examples:

The four main pieces of Pilates studio equipment are the - Cadillac, Reformer, Ladder Barrel and Wunda Chair. Lessons on these pieces are generally one on one with an instructor. Equipment classes for groups tend to be on reformers only, such as the Allegro series by Polestar Education, one of the various, internationally recognized Pilates certifying organisations. Balanced Body allegro reformerThese classes can cater from very easy to very demanding. Studio-based Pilates, would include all the studio equipment, the Cadillac (Trapeze table), Wunda and Step chair, Ladder Barrel, reformer and matwork, with supplementary equipment like spine corrector and Ped-a-pull. Some studios are set up to do small semi-private (1-on-1 to 1-on-3) on the studio equipment.

  • The "high chair" is similar to the pommel;
  • The "reformer" appears to be similar to a modified rowing trainer;
  • The "pedipull" appears to be similar to a modified pulley machine;
  • The "Cadillac" appears to be partially derived from gymnasts' parallel and horizontal bars;
  • The "low chair" is similar to a staking pommel;
  • The "spine corrector barrel" is similar to a low level pommel horse



The Reformer

A sliding bed with springs and straps. These machines are the most popular for group exercise in the studio. Balanced Body have come up with the allegro reformer, very sleek and compact built for easy storage with maximum strength.  With a basic repertoire of over 90 exercise with 400+ variations, the reformer is great for an all over body workout. It also has wonderful rehabilitation properties and is suitable for elderly to athletes.

Pilates allegro class on the Reformer


Working with professionals in the field, post rehab and movement specific training on the Cadillac.
Cadillacs are also known as Trapeze Table, due the swing and the bars. The fluffies are obviously for the feet, looking like some strange torture or machine.  A Cadillac is the primary rehab and personal training machine due to it's diversity in being able to work the movement capacities of the body.



Available are the Wunda Chair and the Combo Chair. The split pedal chairs are a modified design by Polestar Pilates founder Brent Anderson, and allow for a greater range of bilateral challenge, rotation and movement simulating activities of daily living.


Pilates on the combo chair

Ladder Barrel

Not just a great stretch for the back, the barrel is great for athletes, and for clients working on rotational strength for their golf game.


Pilates on the ladder barrel

Step Barrels & Arcs

Pilates Step Barrels (also known as Spine Correctors)  Joseph Pilates used the barrels to uncurl the spine to help correct the posture.  "A man is as old as his spine is flexible" he said

You can feel the days stress vanish as you stretch out over the arc.  Especially wonderful  in today forward flexed lifestyle.  The arcs and step barrels are a great complement to mat classes and arc/barrel classes have become very popular.


Pilates step barrel

Pilates arc

Studio Reformer

The original reformer designed by Joseph Pilates.  It has been modified over the years and now available are the Clinical Reformer, The Fletcher Reformer designed by Ron Fletcher, the Legacy Reformer to name a few.  With a wide repertoire of exercises the  reformer  is ideal for clients on 1 on 1 private session basis. It is great for an all over body workout. It also has wonderful rehabilitation properties and is suitable for elderly to athletes.


Pilates studio reformer


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