Pilates Reformer or the Pilates Chair?
If you’ve been wondering which is better for you – the Pilates Reformer or the Pilates chair – this video is for you. Today I’m going to talk about the Reformer, the Wunda chair, and my favorite ones for you to use at your house, and how best to use them for your practice.
Hi, I’m Lesley Logan, co-founder of OnlinePilatesClasses.com. And I’ve been teaching Pilates since 2008. My teacher was one of Joseph Pilates’ clients. And so I love to talk about all my favorite things about the equipment and how it came about. So I can’t wait to share it with you.
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Why we use Pilates Equipment?
So why should we use Pilates equipment anyways? I mean, the reality is, is that he did create the mat and the mat is something we can do anywhere we are wherever we are, right? Yes. And also he realized really quickly that people had a hard time doing the Mat. We are disconnected in a lot of places, we have imbalances. And so he created the equipment, like the Reformer, Cadillac, Wunda chair and all the other things to help us get those connections, so we can apply them to the Mat.
Today, we’re just talking about the Reformer and the Wunda chair. However, if you want to talk about the Reformer and the Tower/Cadillac, we have a video for you and it explains all the differences and which one you should be using.
Benefits of Pilates Reformer
Alright, so let’s talk about the benefits of Pilates Reformer. Really, it’s just called the Reformer when you’re in a Pilates practice. And it looks sort of like a half bed with a footbar and handles and shoulder blocks, and it has springs. And it really allows you to “close the chain,” what that means is your feet are usually touching something, your hands are touching something, and then you have the support of the spring. So you can repeat a lot of the same movements you would on the Mat, but using some support from springs footbar, straps to help you get into it. You don’t always lie down, oftentimes you’re sitting, you can be kneeling, there’s even standing exercises on it. The more advanced your practice gets, the more different planes your body goes through as you use it. The reason to who use it, the benefits are that it actually is really supportive. And it really does allow you to understand your body and get feedback. Whereas on the Mat, you won’t have that feedback.
Best Reformer for your home
So let’s talk about a Reformer for your home. Reformers typically range between 80 inches and 91 inches, there are some that are a little bit longer, there’s even some that have been built for children that are a little shorter. But that’s typically your average length of a Reformer. The width is about two feet, could be wider. There are some companies that do that. They do take up significant space. Yes, there are some that actually go under a bed, or there are some that people try to sell that fold up. When you get to those compact ones, you’re actually losing a lot of the support and sturdiness and some of the other things you’d use for the Reformer. So the standard ones that I like people to get are going to be between that 80 and 91 inches.
Now the cost, there are going to be some Reformers you’re gonna find under $1,000, but you’re looking at between $1100, about $5000, maybe more dollars, especially if you get one with a Tower attachment on it. So they are a significant cost. And they take up some space. But you know what, you don’t need that couch anyways do you!
Now, my favorite Reformer is going to be the Contrology Reformer at 80 inches, if you are under 6’3″ it’s totally a great size for you. If you are taller than that, then you might want to look at their 86 inch one. The reason I like the Contrology is it’s most like what Joseph Pilates created, and the way the springs are really there to support you. It’s got a lot of great things going on. However, I’ve got the link below for that Reformer, and also all the Reformers made by Balanced Body who makes Contrology. They have some really great Reformers and the range of prices there and also the length and size, so you can pick the one that’s right for you.
For more information on the Reformer and actually all the details about it (because I do go into a lot more depth), we actually have a video about the best Reformer for your home. So make sure you check that out. Also, if you want a Reformer workout with me, below in the description, I’ve got a 30 minute and a 50 minute Reformer workout. You can definitely try it out and see how you like it.
About Pilates Wunda Chair
Now let’s talk about the Wunda Chair. So sometimes people call it the Pilates Chair. I just want to explain to you that there are actually three chairs in the Pilates world. There’s a High Chair, there’s the Arm Chair, and then there’s the Wunda Chair. Some people also have chairs that are called an EXO Chair or NVP Chair. All of those are still under the Wunda Chair family and you can do a lot of the same exercises.
Benefits of Wunda Chair and History
Now the benefits of the Wunda Chair are they don’t take up less space. In fact, you have some of the styles you can actually flip over on the side and use as a chair in your own home! They’re super, super awesome. Now, other things are that it’s actually more difficult and challenging piece of apparatus. It’s going to be more of an advanced piece of equipment. Joseph Pilates actually created it as like the first home piece of gym equipment, which I think is so fun, and he would make them for his clients. He was in New York and so obviously they’d go off to the Hamptons for the summer and they would take their Chair with them and they would do their exercises. In fact a little video of someone doing her Chair exercises in front of the TV way back in the 60s – it’s really cool. So the Chair is awesome. It’s got so many exercises you can do on it… over 70 without us creating more variations of it, and it doesn’t take up a lot of space.
Wunda Chair Cost
So let’s talk about the cost of the Wunda Chair. You’re gonna find some in a variety of ranges, especially some that may be a little bit more of an at home piece. But I will say if you’re going to invest in this, I really love some of the actual Chairs, a lot of studios buy. So you’re looking around between $1,000 to $1,300-$1,400 for a Wunda Chair. So they’re not terribly expensive compared to a Reformer, but still an investment.
Why I love Contrology Chair
My favorite is gonna be the Contrology Chair, holy frickin moly, I have had other chairs, other classical Pilates chairs in my household. And when this one came, I was in love from the very first time I used it. The springs and the angle of the pedal, and the cushion on top really helps you engage your muscles right away. You don’t have to tell the muscles to turn on. So that’s been my absolute favorite. We’ll have the link for my favorite below. We’ll also have the link to Balanced Body’s and all of their chairs. They have a variety of them based on the type of Pilates you want to do. I will say check out mine because it happens to be less expensive than a lot of the popular chairs out there.
If you want to do a Chair workout with me, check out the link below. We have a 20 minute chair workout and I go live every single Sunday at 9am Pacific Time answering your questions, so if you have a question about your chair and how to do an exercise on it, I want to answer that! Makes you subscribe to this channel, hit the notifications and join us on Sunday. So no matter what your Pilates level or experience is OPC is a great place for you because we really helped meet you where you are and we help you use your goals and your needs to apply them to the classes that we have. Thank you so much for watching. I hope this was really helpful and have an amazing day.