Frequently Asked Questions


Why choose Reform Pilates?
Unlike typical big box store fitness studios that teach a general class to a large number of participants, our classes are small so you can be sure to receive safe and individual cueing so that you get challenging, effective exercises with every visit. This is important because we value your time and because no two bodies are the same. In fact, as we grow older, have babies and do life, our bodies have a way of changing. Life has a way of changing us! Effective, long lasting results can only be achieved when you understand and become more aware of your body. We are here to help.
Why Classical Pilates?
Classical Pilates AKA: Contrology was created by Joseph Pilates over the course of his lifetime (1883-1967). Classical Pilates is a therapeutic prescription to counteract the harmful effects of nervous tension and stress living a fast paced, modern lifestyle creates. Pilates was decades ahead of his time with his idea on how effective breathing is for stress reduction, how focusing on specific movement ‘awakens the brain’ and stimulates the organs. He believed in his work and his philosophy of intentional movement so much that he created the Matwork repertoire so that anyone could access the practice from anywhere, anytime, eliminating the need to rely on specific apparatus or an instructor for direction. That said, a Classical instructor receives a minimum of 900 hours of training in anatomy, theory, and practical experience-minimum. Instructors at Reform Pilates are expected to continue their learning through acquisition of CEC’s on a yearly basis, further augmenting their knowledge base and experience.
Where is the class schedule?

You can view our full schedule online here. If you do not see class times that work for you, please contact us to let us know. We’d love to hear from you!

What can I expect on my first visit?

Please plan to arrive 10 minutes prior to the start of your session or class. If you are working privately with an instructor, we require that you fill out a hardcopy liability waiver and questionnaire that will help the teacher identify areas of concerns and intent for the session/s to come. Out of consideration for our teachers and students, classes start promptly, no late arrivals will be accepted as it disrupts the flow of our classes.

I have osteoporosis / scoliosis / special considerations–is Classical Pilates safe for me?

We have clinical experience with scoliosis, spinal herniation, adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder), shoulder separation, spondylolisthesis, osteoporosis, osteopenia and osteoarthritis, Parkinson’s and Multiple Sclerosis as well as hip and knee replacements. We strongly suggest private sessions if you are currently experiencing any of the above conditions and especially if you are new to the studio. Please contact the studio for more information or to join these specialized classes.

How many Pilates sessions should I take each month?

The Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology recommends physical exercise everyday and recommends targeting your muscles and bones two times per week. The answer really depends on the goals that you set for yourself and the level of fitness you would like to attain. Classical Pilates is a system of exercise and exercise repertoire that works the whole body and mind. Students will feel immediate results after one class and can expect visible or more lasting results after 6-8 classes.

What is the difference between Matwork and Apparatus?
Matwork refers to the original 34 mat exercises devised by Joseph Pilates. It is an integral modality in Pilates and provides one of the most effective and challenging workouts around. These exercises are traditionally done without equipment, however small props and other devices such as balls, rollers, spine corrector (baby barrels) and bands are used in order to help you execute or optimize neuromuscular function. At Reform Pilates ‘Apparatus’ classes refers only to the Reformer and Chair however we also have Electric Chair, Cadillac, Ped-o-Pull and High Barrel. With the exception of the High Barrel, all have springs which help to generate resistance so you can develop greater muscular awareness and strength quicker than on the mat. Apparatus work provides your muscles with feedback through resistance and is an excellent compliment to the matwork. Both Matwork and Apparatus will help you with awareness, strength, alignment and coordination.
What does grasshopper mean?
Grasshopper is a reference to the movie, Kung Fu where the main character is referred to as ‘Grasshopper’ by his mentor, a wise, old, Shaolin monk. We also use the term to invoke the spirit of Joe Pilates’ and Clara’s work which was based on natural movements, including those of animals. Grasshoppers recognize that patience is necessary to progress safely and to achieve mastery. So do we.
What does Internal Shower mean?
Internal Shower is a reference from Joseph Pilates’ book, ‘Return to Life’. He aptly describes deep circulation, heat and synovial fluid / lubrication that occurs in the body when you are able to breathe properly during movement. We have assigned Internal Shower to Level 3 when, after learning basic concepts and demonstrating essential skills, students are not distracted by the ‘basics’ and can focus on moving deeply from the breath and generating the heat that is synonymous with Joe’s “Internal Shower”.
What is ‘Contrologist’?
Contrology is what Joseph Pilates called his exercise regime, another reference to Pilates’ book, ‘Return to Life’, and defines Joe’s idea of achieving complete mastery of mind over body – a lofty goal indeed! We attribute the commitment and dedication required to reach Level 4 / 5 to the ‘Contrologist’ student. These classes are designed to take your Pilates practice to a whole new realm of challenges and possibilities in a safe manner. Only students who have embodied concepts and completed the repertoire in Level 3 / Internal Shower are eligible or with permission from the studio.
What should I do if the class I want to take is full?
Occasionally, the class you want is full. Please sign up in advance for the classes you want to secure your place. If you see classes you want are full, please place yourself on the waitlist. This not only provides us with information about what class times are popular, it is likely you may be called as spots periodically open up. Get on our lists! By doing this you increase your odds of getting the classes you want.
What should I do if the class I want to take has been cancelled?
Our small studio strives to offer exceptional programming and flexibility. To that end we only offer classes of up to 4 students. We have adopted a first come, first served approach, allowing you to book your classes online at your convenience or until your package or set of classes “expire”. However, due to the small class sizing and in order to plan instruction in advance, we rely on pre-bookings and reservations done in a timely manner to create and structure our programming. We also require a minimum of three students to run a class. Waiting until the last minute to reserve your spot in a specific class will, unfortunately, result in interruptions to programming and cancelled classes.
Is Pilates effective for weight loss?
No form of weight training or exercise alone will help you lose weight without making necessary dietary changes. Reducing your sugar intake–including alcohol–will drastically improve your results regardless of which form of training you decide upon. That said, a cardio workout does burn more calories than an average Pilates class. However, Classical Pilates is not your average Pilates class. It is a combination of anaerobic (resistance training), stretching and aerobic training-an incredibly effective way to achieve results because you work all major muscle groups synergistically, building overall strength and working overall posture uniformly. Also consider that with anaerobic training like Pilates, your metabolism stays elevated for a longer period than cardio because muscles burn more calories at rest compared to some other tissues in the body.
Are group classes suitable for beginners?

While we highly recommend all new students take advantage of our Introductory 5, we understand that is not always possible or affordable. In the event that you are unable to take advantage of our Introductory Private Sessions we recommend the Fundamentals Series. This is a pre-registered class consists of 8 group classes and is offered periodically so please check for space availability. After registering, students are required to attend a minimum of 1 class per week until the sessions are used up. Instructors cover Essential Movement skills, concepts such as mobility, stability and balance. We make it fun and encourage exploration and transfer these new movement skills into everyday use and to performing our repertoire of exercises.

When and what should I eat before a Pilates class?

We recommend you eat a complete meal which includes carbs, protein and fat 2-3 hours before Pilates. Consuming protein pre-workout can help increase muscle protein synthesis–the building blocks for growth. We understand that is not always possible to incorporate complex carbohydrates and proteins such as nuts or a protein smoothie in advance. If all else fails, grab a banana for energy which is a simple carbohydrate that contains potassium. Potassium supports blood pressure, cardiovascular strength, bone and muscle strength. Don’t forget to drink plenty of water before and after!

Is Pilates like Yoga?
Most Yoga classes, having lost roots in the Vedic tradition of physical, mental and spiritual practice are now mainstream and more widely known only for their fitness benefits. In that sense, it is easy to confuse Yoga with Pilates, especially with the myriad of classes that claim to be Pilates: Pilates Fusion, Yoga-lates and other “Pilates” classes taught without any specific training. The two practices, while complementary and overlapping in their focus on concentration and physical discipline, are distinctly different. The most glaring difference between traditional Yoga and Pilates is the absence of religion or spiritual reference in Pilates. The second difference between Yoga and Classical Pilates is the rigorous, in-depth anatomy and physiology training that Classical Pilates Instructors must complete as well as the use of resistive equipment and apparatus that is used in Pilates. For students who enjoy the benefits of yoga but who are hypermobile, Pilates may help reduce their risk of injury or prevent the worsening of laxity in the joints because the resistive springs provide feedback to help neurokenetic responses.
I can’t find a class time that works with my schedule.

Please contact us if you do not see class times that suit your availability. We are a new studio and growing! We would love to hear from you!


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