The Pilates Equipment

Universal Reformer

This piece of equipment is the most widely used and versatile piece of equipment developed by Joseph Pilates. Using a simple wooden frame, a movable carriage, springs, a footbar and adjustable leather straps, Joe invented an exercise machine that address virtually every part of the body. Exercises can be performed either on your back, stomach, knees, standing or sitting, and challenge you to stabilize the trunk using your own body weight along with spring resistance to allow the extremities to move from a stable torso.

Springs of varying strengths provide resistance and support while the student pushes on the footbar, pulls on the straps, lies on the box or stands on the carriage. Starting with just the exercises that Joe invented there are more than 50 different moves that can be varied to suit the student’s needs and fitness level. Exercises vary from simple isolated movements of the arms and legs to complex exercises involving the whole body.

Trapeze Table

Also known as the Cadillac or the Trap Table, the Trapeze Table is based on the first piece of equipment designed by Joseph Pilates. When Joe was working as an orderly at an Army hospital in Britain during WWI, he attached springs to metal bed frames and created an exercise machine for his patients. As the concept developed, Joe added a full frame around the table and several spring attachment points to provide varying angles of resistance for a wide range of exercises. The Trapeze and Towers are versatile pieces of equipment that can be used for teaching clients at any level. They are especially useful for teaching the principles to new or injured students and for adding athletic, full bodied exercises for experienced students.

The Pilates Chair

Also known as the Wunda or Combo Chair, the Pilates Chair is the most challenging piece of Pilates equipment for building strength. Exercises on the Chair are great for skiers, runners, tennis players, golfers and for students looking to increase power in the upper body for throwing, lifting and racquet sports.

The Chair is based on the original designed by Joseph Pilates for his students who lived in small New York apartments. It was literally an exercise machine that could be converted into a chair and put in the living room. It is a simple piece of equipment consisting of a seat and a hinged foot pedal that springs attach to. You can sit, lie or stand on the Chair or the floor and push the pedal with your hands or feet. There are over 25 different exercise categories on the Chair focusing on core strength, leg strength, shoulder girdle stability, mobility and strength as well at functional movements such as standing, climbing, pushing and lifting.

Ladder Barrel

This piece of equipment consists of a rounded surface called the barrel and a pair of wooden uprights tied together with cross pieces called the ladder.

The distance between the barrel and the ladder can be adjusted to accommodate students of different heights. It is used primarily for stretching and to increase the strength and flexibility of the spine extension and flexion and lateral flexion.

Spine Corrector

Also known as the Step Barrel, the Spine Corrector consists of a rounded surface called the barrel and a step attached to the barrel. The top of the step is called the lip and the bottom of the stem where it meets the barrel is called the well. Step Barrels usually have a handle of some kind on the side of the barrel. Step Barrels come in a variety of sizes and shapes. Joseph custom-built barrel shapes to accommodate the varying proportions of his students.
It is a great addition to a Mat class adding variety and challenging new exercises. It is frequently used for students who have scoliosis or other spinal imbalances to refine the use of the spine in any position.


Pure Movement Pilates Studio:
A Pilates, Barre, and Bodhi Suspension System Studio

526 West Jefferson Boulevard
Fort Wayne, IN 46802

tel: 260-420-1000

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