Throughout the summer Potomac Pilates is offering Mat classes, the question on everyone's mind is...WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN MAT & REFORMER??
Both workouts provide similar core strengthening and flexibility benefits so it can be confusing to know which is the best fit for your individual goals and capabilities. There tends to be a hesitation on both ends and the answer is that you should do both to optimize your results and challenge your muscle groups! Here’s a breakdown to help you out:
The biggest difference between rolling out a mat and looping on up is resistance -- A reformer provides weight that can be a challenge, but in some ways a cushion. Sometimes having a heavier weight allows one to push against their loops or bar, offering assistance in the workout movements. The springs and pulleys guide you, allowing you to find your core and balance more easily. Think about plank pose. A lighter spring will challenge the core because of the complete control required of your body. Similarly, with Mat Pilates, only your own body creates the resistance, making it possibly more difficult to hold positions.
Both Reformer and Mat Pilates will strengthen and elongate the muscles, but their difficulty varies. If you’re a beginner, Mat classes provide a solid foundation for the large variety of exercises presented on a reformer. However, advanced members may want to return to the roots of their workouts, or Mat classes, to delve deeper into specific muscles that are behind ultimate core strength. On the other hand, someone who is looking to stretch or rehabilitate the body and still get a good work out should focus more on Reformer Pilates, while more experienced members with relatively controlled cores should look into taking Potomac Pilates’ new Mat classes. Nevertheless, both workouts cater to any level and are guaranteed to help work muscles you didn’t know existed! Voila, this is the genius behind Potomac’s Performance Pilates!