Types of Pilates: What are the different types of Pilates?

Types of Pilates: What are the different types of Pilates?

Grace Waruguru
June 19, 2023 at 2:43 PM

There are several types of Pilates to achieve your desired fitness or workout goals. Using suitable Pilates in the gym or home gives you optimum results, helping you achieve your fitness goals. Read on to discover the different Pilates available and how to use each effectively.

types of Pilates
Members working out at the Yoga, Pilates and Barre-Studios of the John & Janes Soulbase. Photo: Jens Kalaene
Source: Getty Images

Pilates is a form of exercise designed in 1929 by Joseph Pilates to develop muscular strength, lose weight and improve general mental and physical strength. The specialized workout is sometimes referred to as Contrology. The exercise has evolved over the years, making it more effective for users.

Types of Pilates

Pilates was designed with principles which have remained the same since its development. These are breath, concentration, control, centre, precision and flow. The main objective of Pilates is to let the mind control the muscles. What are the different types of Pilates exercises?

1. Mat Pilates

Mat Pilates are the most convenient and accessible and can be done anywhere without any equipment. This method is suitable for beginners learning the fundamentals of the workout. However, they are also ideal for advanced stages that require intensity, using their body for resistance.

Mat Pilates workouts are an excellent way to strengthen abdominal muscles, pelvic floor, hips, lower back muscles and the upper body because they focus on the core. The types of Pilates moves using the mat help with mindfulness and relaxation, reducing stress levels.

2. Classical Pilates

types of Pilates machines
A woman is doing Pilates at home in her living room on March 26, 2020. In front of her are two dumbbells in Berlin, Germany. Photo: Thomas Trutschel
Source: Getty Images

One of the slightly advanced types of Pilates workout is Classical Pilates. This method uses a mat and light equipment to attain full-body movement through a sequence of exercises.

Classical Pilates starts with simple workouts and then progresses to more complicated ones. The main concept of this Pilates category is the seamless transition between these routines.

3. Contemporary Pilates

Contemporary Pilates, or Hybrid Pilates, is an improved version of Classical Pilates, including contemporary exercises, physiotherapy, and biomechanics. The routines follow the spine's natural curve but can be modified according to the user's goals, including dance routines.

This type of Pilates training is excellent for patients going through rehabilitation, pre-natal and post-natal clients. Users can also include stretching bands, dumbbells, gym balls, mats, and Pilates reformers.

4. 3-2-8 Pilates

types of Pilates reformers
People exercising Pilates at a gym in Chengdu, China on April 16, 2020. Photo: China News Service
Source: Getty Images

3-2-8 Pilates is a unique workout that includes weight lifting, Pilates, Barre, walking and running. For the first three days, participants concentrate only on the intense weight exercises of their choice, focusing on their entire body. On the fourth and fifth days, allow your body to recover and calm down by doing low-impact Pilates and Barre workouts.

Additionally, they should walk or run 8,000 steps daily to lose about 300 calories. 3-2-8 Pilates helps you to lose weight quickly, tone muscles, and gain flexibility.

5. Clinical Pilates

Clinical Pilates is a therapeutic exercise that qualified physiotherapists offer to treat various injuries and health conditions. It is customized according to the patient's issue and helps stabilize the neck and lower back muscles, facilitating faster recovery post-surgery and reducing pain.

6. Stott Pilates

Stott Pilates aims to restore the spine's original curve and improve the condition of the muscles around the joints. This type of exercise is ideal for individuals with spine, neck, back, and shoulder injuries. The different types of Pilates workouts in this category use tools like stretching bands, dumbbells, and rings.

7. Reformer Pilates

 types of Pilates equipment
Main room with equipment at Zed Pilates Studio, London, United Kingdom. Photo: Ed Reeve
Source: Getty Images

Reformer Pilates uses reformer Pilates machines to add resistance and improve posture and coordination. The exercise is one of the most intense and has springs that help when users are struggling to move.

This method uses a Pilates reformer machine used under a trainer's supervision. There are over 60 Pilates reformers workouts for the legs, spine, and shoulders. The machine has a platform, sliding carriage, ropes, and pulleys which help the body increase stamina, posture, and flexibility.

Types of Pilates Reformers

Different Pilates machines help with various routines, stretching and strengthening the muscles. Some of them include:

  • Professional Reformers: These are used in studios and gyms. Most have a tower attachment and can accommodate different body types and sizes.
  • Home Reformers: These machines are smaller and do not contain a tower attachment.
  • Pilates Barrels: The machine's name came from Joseph Pilate's love for beer delivered in barrels. It is perfect for supporting the flex and extension of the spine using gravity and comes in different designs.
  • Pilates Chairs: This type of Pilates equipment chairs come in different designs tailored for the specific body parts you want to exercise. Some designs are the Wunda chair and the High electric chair.

What are the different types of Pilates certification?

what are the different types of Pilates certification
People working out at the Yoga, Pilates and Barre-Studios of the John & Janes Soulbase. Photo: Jens Kalaene
Source: Getty Images

One primary requirement for sports enthusiasts interested in becoming Pilates instructors is a certification. They add credibility to your skill, making reaching out to prospective clients easier. The standard certifications include the following:

1. Stott Pilates: The comprehensive program teaches intermediate and essential exercises within a manageable timeframe to allow your body to adapt slowly and effectively.

2. Power Pilates: The class is a comprehensive training program covering beginner, intermediate and advanced workout levels.

3. Peak Pilates: Peak Pilates offers Classical Pilates programs in three-tier modules.

4. Basi Pilates: Basi classes offer Classical style comprehensive programs, giving students a solid foundational knowledge of Pilates theory and exercises.

5. Balanced Body: The certification gives students a deep understanding of how the human body works, laying a firm foundation for any Pilates training.

6. Polestar Pilates: Polestar training covers personal and professional growth and deals with the Classical Pilates style.

7. Fletcher Pilates: This class covers international Pilates training and is the only training program endorsed by Ron Fletcher, a former American Pilates master and teacher.

8. Romana’s Pilates: This instructor training program equips learners for a lifetime of training.

There are more than two types of Pilates exercises designed to achieve specific body and health goals. As you discover the Pilates routine that suits you, ensure a qualified instructor guides you to avoid injuries.

READ ALSO: 10 top-rated energy drinks to power you up during exercise

Sports Brief published top-selling energy drinks that energise you before and during your workout sessions. Ensure you check out the ingredients on each drink to avoid adverse side effects. These drinks include Red Bull, Monster Energy, and Monster Assault. Check out the above article to see the complete list of energy drinks.

Grace Waruguru photo
Grace Waruguru