Updated: June 4, 2015
Best Pilates Reformers:To all of you who have been in a pilates class at a gym or studio, you are probably familiar with the pilates reformer machine. Some have called it a 'medieval torture device' but we feel like that is taking it too far. You will get a great workout while on the pilates reformer and appreciate all the benefits when done. Pilates is really about the quality of each movement, not the quantity.
The pilates reformers are an excellent way to get started in pilates and we recommend doing the first few classes with a certified instructor. One that will show you and help you with the correct posture and alignment while engaging in each exercise. Ideally you take a few classes and then move on to your own home pilates reformer. The reformer pilates machines are expensive, so you need to be committed to using it for it to make sense financially. The Stott Pilates SPX is $2500 while the Stamina AeroPilates Pro XP556 sells for less than $900. We go into detail on each machine below and how to choose the right one for yourself.
Choosing a Pilates Reformer- Pilates is more than an exercise craze, it's a way of life for millions of us around the world. Beyond taking regular pilates classes at our local gym, many of us do them at home to stay fit and in shape. Aging is a normal part of life, but being able to keep your body flexible and your muscles toned requires some work. The pilates reformer machines are taking pilates to the next level. If you like your treadmill or elliptical machine, you should consider changing to a pilates reformer just for the improved cardio workout. It's easier on your joints and body compared to the running machines you find at the gym. Are you going to be able to run when you are 60 or 70? The pilates workouts on the reformer are something you can do for decades and you don't have to worry about your body breaking down or getting hurt. Get some certified instruction to start and you can quickly do the workouts on your own in the privacy of your home. The DVDs are easy to follow and give you endless ideas on fitness and workout routines that will keep you interested for a long time. We mentioned the top 2 selling pilates reformers above (STOTT and Stamina), but you will find plenty of other manufacturers including the Peak Pilate System Deluxe that retails for close to $6000. Not everyone needs the Peak Pilates machine, although it is very nice.
The Stamina AeroPilates 700 gets excellent feedback from consumers. We have tried that one at our local pilates studio and it worked great. The low-impact cardio rebounder is easy on the joints and something that everyone can handle. Some come with accessory items like the reformer box or the cardio rebounder while others don't. Be sure to check with the manufacturer before purchasing if those items are important to you. The more expensive they get, typically you get superior parts and materials so the construction on the springs, carriage, headrest, cardio rebounder, and leather straps will hold up better than less expensive models. If you are buying for a pilates studio or gym where the reformer machines will get hours of use each day, go with the high end machines. On the other hand, if you plan on using it a few times a week at home, then perhaps the sub $500 pilates reformers will do just fine. No matter which reformer machine you choose for your pilates workout, be sure to watch the safety video and learn the basics before doing any exercise. REVIEWS - We found comments and articles posted on websites like Livestrong.com, Health.com, and About.com in their Pilates section. Most feedback pointed to the STOTT and Stamina machines. You can browse the best selling pilates reformers online here.