Most of us are familiar with Reformer Pilates and even Pilates performed on the Mat, but may not be familiar with the other varieties of classes and equipment a Pilates studio can offer…like a Pilates Springboard class. We are so excited to bring you another way to have positive movement experiences in our beautiful space and uplifting atmosphere, taught by passionate instructors!
What does a Pilates Springboard actually look like? What are they used for within a class or private session? How is it different than other classes?
Well, let’s spring to it! If you happened to guess that a Springboard class involves several springs attached to boards, you definitely have the right starting point. Yes, you’ll see large boards attached to the wall with several eyelets for springs to be attached at varying heights….high or low. You can lie down, kneel, lunge, plank, squat, sit on a chair, bend, twist, or stand and use the springs on your hands, feet, or even on your trunk! In our studio, our Springboards also have a push-through bar—which is a metal bar that hinges from the board. This is also sprung from above and below to work arms, legs, and of course that core! The Springboards are equivalent to the Tower conversions you use either in Tower classes or in a private session. These classes are suitable for clients of all levels.
Some Key points that will SPRING out at you when you take a Springboard/Tower Pilates Class:
- Variety of stabilization movements, even while you are on stable ground
- Unlike a reformer that has the moving carriage, your body takes on different challenges to stabilize through your core muscles to keep your body in place—as you pull on the springs or as they resist your movement.
- You are in control of the challenge… as you move away from the board (or move the springs higher/lower on the apparatus) the tension and pull of the springs will increase or decrease thus varying your degree of resistance.
- This might be a lot more comfortable for those who prefer not to slide back and forth on the carriage or for those who would like to challenge their balance in a different way.
- Variety of Setups/Positions:
- Springs can be higher than your head or as low as your feet
- You can face toward, to the side or away from the Springboard for different lines of pull
- Springboards can allow for greater adjustments/adaptations for clients who need different positioning such as sitting instead of kneeling, etc.
- Variety of Coordination Challenges:
- Because the springs are independent of each other, you can have arms, legs, trunks, moving in different directions—one at a time, or multiple directions at the same time.
- This can create less of a bilateral (two sided) challenge and more focus on unilateral movement
- This can also create more of a bilateral (two sided) coordination challenge as you work on different combinations of symmetrical or asymmetrical movements
There is so much more to discover! But for now, a quick summary: springboard equipment gives amazing versatility for Pilates exercises on the mat, in a chair, kneeling, or standing to increase overall strength. They can also potentially be more comfortable for those who prefer to stay on stable ground. Springboard adaptability makes it excellent for rehabilitation and gentle strengthening, extremely challenging for even the fittest athlete, AND will always grant you more connections and awareness in your body, as with any Pilates class.
After all these points and pictures, you may still be thinking: Is it easier than a mat class? Is it harder than the reformer classes? And the answer we will give you to each of those questions, with a little smile, is “yes and no.” It will, of course, always depend on needs of the clients in the class, what level the class is, and your comfort level with the equipment. The only way to really find out how much strength you’ll gain, mobility you’ll discover, fun you’ll have, and lessons you learn will be… if you come join us! Spring on in for fun!
In Strength and Health,