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What's Your Favourite Pilates Reformer? A Reflection Beyond the Springs


Where determination meets elegance: the Pilates journey unfolds
Grace in strength, poise in challenge: the Pilates promise personified.

Embarking on a journey through the heart of Pilates often leads us down a path adorned with the silhouettes of reformers, each with its own tale to tell. The reformer, an extension of our teaching essence, becomes a silent partner in the poetic narrative of movement we unfold together with our students. As Pilates teachers, the reformer we choose to accompany us is not merely a piece of equipment, but a silent narrator, its structure and glide echoing the philosophy we impart.


Much like a seasoned dancer, I have twirled through the array of reformers that the dance of time has brought forth. From the rustic charm of my first handcrafted reformer in the quaint Pineapple Dance Studios to the refined elegance of the modern-day marvels, each has been a chapter in my Pilates narrative.


The question of a favourite reformer often finds its way to the shores of our discussion. Yet, as I traverse through the memories, I find the answer isn't etched in the brand or the make, but in the essence it carries. The reformer that resonates with the ethos of adaptability and exploration holds a special place in my teaching heart.


Every reformer has its unique rhythm, its springs singing a different tune, its carriage gliding with a distinct grace. Yet, beneath these differences lies a common ground, a silent pledge to the essence of Pilates. It's in this essence where my affinity for the reformer lies, not in its name, but in its heart.


The journey across continents, from the bustling heart of London to the serene landscapes of Switzerland and the vibrant rhythms of the USA, has been a voyage of discovery. Each land brought forth its unique ensemble of reformers, each with its own tale to tell. Amidst the reputable brands, were lands where big names were whispers amidst the dominance of locally crafted reformers. These local gems, brimming with artisanal charm and infused with the indigenous essence of Pilates, added a rich layer to the narrative. The uniqueness and innovation found in these locally made reformers resonated deeply, echoing a tune of authenticity and passion.


In my conversations with fellow Pilates teachers, some have expressed a strong preference for teaching on a specific make of reformer, an affinity cultivated over years of practice. This fascinates me, especially when reflecting on the rich history of Pilates, where Joseph Pilates' brother, Fred, crafted reformers, each with its distinct character. As Lolita San Miguel recounts, these reformers, each with their unique personalities, were like silent companions on a Pilates teacher's journey. You might have had a favourite, yet the essence of Pilates teaching was in embracing the character of whatever reformer was available, learning to dance to its unique tune.


So when the whispers of curiosity beckon, asking about my favourite reformer, I find myself reflecting not on a name, but on an experience. The reformer that stands before me, its springs poised, its carriage awaiting the dance of Pilates. It's the reformer that resonates with the rhythm of the moment, ready to join me in the unspoken dialogue of teaching, exploring the boundless horizons of movement, one glide at a time.


Thus, my favourite reformer? It's an ode to the present moment, a tribute to the essence of adaptability that lies at the heart of Pilates. It's the reformer that stands before me, ready to engage in the beautiful dance of movement and stillness, whispering the timeless teachings of Pilates with every glide.

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