Why I love … reformer pilates

The machine looks like quite the contraption, but it is not as intimidating as it seems 

Annie Kirwan pictured with Lee Tracey 

Annie Kirwan pictured with Lee Tracey 

 

I found pilates (or maybe pilates found me) when I was a very low point in my life. I was low in weight, self-confidence and lacking in life direction. Walking into my first class I had no idea what I was getting myself into.

Reformer pilates was like a flexibility class, mindfulness session, and total body workout all in one. My legs shook, my abs burned, I was literally upside down at one point. I was terrible at nearly everything, but left totally exhilarated. And so, I was hooked.

It was such a relief to have a physical outlet that wasn’t competitive, that didn’t look for measured results. My only marker was how good I felt afterwards. It made me appreciate my body, and helped me to focus on positive goals like splits or backbends.

The physical and mental benefits of reformer pilates are immense. The machine looks like quite the contraption, with straps for your arms and legs but it is not as intimidating as it seems. 

Annie Kirwan pictured with Lee Tracey 
The movements are dynamic, challenging and so diverse

The movements are dynamic, challenging and so diverse. You can put it on super supportive settings, allowing your body to let go and relax and your nervous system calm. But with a flick of a spring and change of resistance, it can transform into a tremble-inducing, heart racing lunge or plank series. You quickly build muscle and tone, hugely improve flexibility, balance, and stability. It encompasses all parts of your body. 

The number reason I love it is because it is fun! That’s what keeps me going back.

From that first class, my career grew. I became a pilates teacher and yoga instructor, and this year I opened a studio with Lee Tracey called Reformation. I have had such a love affair with reformer pilates, and I am so happy to be able to pass that love on to others. 

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