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Quick guide: What types of Pilates accessories are there? 

  1. Pilates ring (magic circle or exercise ring or power ring) – Small and lightweight, flexible, varies in diameter, create resistance to make your practice muscle- and toning-oriented. 
  2. Foam roller – Lightweight, comes in all sizes, releases the tension of your muscles, can be used as a self-massage tool, can be adopted for Pilates routine. 
  3. Resistance band – Lightweight, small, portable, good for stretching, toning and strength training, various resistance levels, popular Pilates accessory. 
  4. Soft ball – Lightweight, comes in all sizes, provides support for your movements, increases your flexibility and makes your Pilates workout more challenging. 
  5. Pilates chair, reformer, and barrel – Require extra space, are more expensive, best to know some basics before trying them out.   

There are many options out there, so you may ask this question: “What Pilates equipment do I need?” Here’s what you should look for.   

How to choose the right Pilates equipment for home gym: 

  1. Think about attending a class in a Pilates studio – under the watchful eye of a certified instructor, you’ll be able to test small Pilates gear and Pilates machines. Then you can decide which one you like the most.
  2. Think about your budget – Pilates apparati don’t have to drain your pocket. A resistance band or magic circle are great options. When you want to get professional, you may think about larger equipment like a reformer or table. However, these props are big-ticket item. 
  3. Think about your space – If you don’t have a dedicated space for Pilates routines and working out at home to your favorite workout DVD, small props are the way to go. If you have a separate room for it, machines like a Reformer or Cadillac will be perfect for your routine. 
  4. Think about exercise intensity – Pilates gear can be used at any level; however, it is advised that before you jump on a reformer or go at full-speed with magic circles, you should try mat Pilates first. 
  5. Think about want to improve with Pilates exercise - Is it arms or thights, roll-ups or teasers, posture or strength?
  6. Think about your favorite prop – Working with each apparatus is different. A soft ball is great for balance, a ring strengthens your muscles, and a roller makes your spine relaxed. Test them out in a studio before choosing “the one.”  
  7. Think about transportation – Some of the props are bulky. If you plan to travel with an accessory, take into consideration its portability, weight and size, and the attachments they’re coming with: a strap or a case.   

Why should you use Pilates accessories? 

A Pilates ring, resistance band, or a soft ball are just a few small Pilates accessories in the repertoire to add to your workout.  They:

  • Can be used as a part of at-home routine 
  • Affordable small equipment 
  • Tunes up your mat workout 
  • Increases awareness of the body 
  • Can be used for entire body workout 
  • Can be used for strength, toning or stretching
  • Can be adapted to other types of exercises and activities, e.g., yoga or physical therapy   

How does Pilates equipment work? 

Small equipment is often used as an additional prop during the mat Pilates workout. Big machines, such as a Reformer, Cadillac or barrel are different types of classes. They’re often used in the rehabilitation process to make the movements smoother and prevent from further injuries.    

What else might you need 

You can also jazz up your Pilates gear with exercise socks. They will give your movements on a mat more grip, making it stable and comfortable. Finally, a non-slip Pilates workout.

On eBay, you’ll find Pilates DVDs with sessions led by professional Pilates instructors. You could exercise in the privacy of your own home, without the need to go to a studio again. 

What about Pilates reformer parts? 

You can find replacement parts for your reformer such as springs, ropes or footbars on eBay. Reformer accessories such as rebounders or towers are also available. Their purpose is to make your reformer workout more efficient.    

What brands have Pilates equipment on their assortment? 

  • Gaiam, STOTT Pilates, or Balanced Body are some the most popular manufacturers. 
  • Gratz and Stamina AeroPilates are producers of reformers in their most classical form. They also manufacture accessories for the Pilates machine.

With the appropriate equipment, be it a machine or a small prop, you’ll be able to boost your full body training.      

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