Is Pilates on the reformer better than mat Pilates?

Matwork and equipment complement each other in terms of function. The matwork by itself offers you a complete Pilates workout as most of the movements can be performed on the mat. To give you an additional workout, the Pilates equipment works your muscles to stretch, sculpt and lengthen your body. Examples of smaller equipment are the resistance bands; Pilates exercise ball and the Magic Circle while the larger equipment includes the Pilates Reformer, Cadillac and Arc Barrel. A combination of the matwork and the equipment will give you a satisfactory Pilates workout with good variety.


The fundamental Pilates workout can be performed on a Pilates mat alone, and great results can be achieved through beginner, intermediate and advanced moves. However, the various equipment pieces such as the Reformer, Cadillac and Chair incorporate light spring resistance that works like concentric and eccentric muscle contractions to safely sculpt, tone and stretch the muscles. The Arc Barrels and Ladder provide support that allows you to safely manipulate your body to stretch and engage muscles otherwise challenging to isolate. Smaller Pilates equipment pieces such resistance bands, Pilates circles and exercise balls also provide an element of variety and focus to a Pilates regimen.