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How Often Should You Do Pilates Reformer? The Ideal Schedule

by Shafi Khan |

Pilates is an exercise that involves strengthening core muscles by performing exercises such as abdominal curls, pelvic tilts, and leg circles while lying on a mat or reformer machine.

If you are looking to get the most out of your Pilates reformer sessions, it is important to have a plan. Knowing how often should you do Pilates reformer can help keep things fresh and exciting for both yourself and your body.

In this article, we will share everything you need to know about how often you should do Pilates reformer and some of the reasons why it is important.

How Often Should You Do Pilates Reformer?

As with any exercise routine, there are many different opinions on how often you should do Pilates reformer. The truth is that much depends on what your goals are, your level, and your schedule.

1. Based on Your Fitness Goals

General Fitness

If you are simply interested in general fitness and want to maintain some degree of muscle tone while getting healthier, then 2-3 times a week is likely enough. Pilates reformer can help to improve core strength immensely but it does not replace having to move your body on a more regular basis.

Cross Training & Performance

If you are hoping to use Pilates as a way to cross-train for some other sport, then chances are that your schedule may not allow more than 2 times a week.

It is important to keep in mind that the muscles and connective tissue need time to recover between workouts.

So if you plan on going hard on Sundays, don't expect to be able to show up and light it up on Tuesdays (regardless of how much you love Pilates reformer).

Movement Restoration/Rehabilitation

If you have a pre-existing injury or you are rehabilitating from surgery or some other chronic pain condition, then chances are that a Pilates reformer schedule of 4 times a week will likely be required.

2. Based on Your Pilates Level

Beginner

If you are brand new to Pilates reformer or it has been a while since you have done workouts on this machine, then 2-3 times a week is likely enough. However, if you have time, you can go for more sessions per week.

Intermediate

If you are an intermediate Pilates reformer disciple, then you probably already know that this is a great way to sweat and challenge yourself at the same time.

However, it is important to build up your body slowly and allow yourself recovery time to avoid injury or burnout. Try performing Pilates reformer workouts 3 times a week during the first month before bumping it up to 4 times a week.

Advanced

If you are an advanced Pilates reformer pal, then chances are that you already know how great it feels to give your body a workout this intense.

In addition, you also likely know that your body needs more recovery time than an average beginner. In this case, it is recommended that you aim for a Pilates reformer workout schedule of 4-5 times per week.

3. Based on Your Schedule

Once a Week

If you just don't have the time to do Pilates reformer more than once per week, then it is important to keep in mind that this may not be enough. Once a week is unlikely to provide you with the strength and endurance you'll need to keep up the transformations or make major structural adjustments.

Moreover, you could spend a significant amount of time each session simply trying to reconnect the connections you discovered the previous week. Despite how pleased you are with yourself after the Pilates reformer class, the benefits you achieve every time will be difficult to hold onto for longer.

If you are only able to work out on the machine once a week, aim for 2-3 days of interval training or cardio workouts (such as jogging) outside of your Pilates reformer workout to give your body a good amount of time to recover.

Two or Three Times Per Week

If you have the time and energy to do Pilates reformer up to 3 times a week, then this is definitely enough in order to get a good sweat going while challenging yourself at the same time.

Just keep in mind that you will likely fall short of achieving any significant alterations in your body (meaning that your muscles and connective tissues won't have enough time to really recover).

For example, if you are able to perform Pilates reformer workouts on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, then try adding 2-3 interval training or cardio days during the rest of the week.

Four or More Times Per Week

If you are committed to achieving the most noticeable results from Pilates reformer, then it is important to learn how to schedule your workouts in a way that allows sufficient time for muscle and tissue recovery.

In this case, 4-5 times a week should be more than enough to make some serious changes to your body structure while still allowing yourself the energy to feel refreshed and energized during your workouts.

Just remember that working out Pilates reformer 4 or more times per week is not recommended for beginners due to the greater risk of injury involved.

Also, be sure to schedule in at least 1-2 rest days per week (on the off days, aim for interval training)

Everyday

If you love the Pilates reformer and you feel like it is just a part of your life: great. Just keep in mind that if you work out every day, then this will require more time for muscle and connective tissue recovery, especially if your body isn't used to such frequent workouts.

In addition, working out every day will cause you to miss out on some of the mental stress relief that comes with rest days.

If you love performing Pilates reformer every day, then try to create an effective routine that varies between different intensity levels. You might, for example, want to do two group reformer sessions, two private lessons, and a few short home workouts each week.

How Much Time Should You Spend Training Pilates Reformer?

It is best to aim for an average of 30-60 minutes per session on the Pilates reformer, depending upon your workout intensity.

If you are only able to do short workouts each day, then this isn't a problem since you will still achieve good results.

Pilates takes around 30-60 minutes for moderate to high-intensity aerobic activity so it fits great into someone's day who has a busy schedule but still wants to try to fit some exercise into their life.

Final Words

Pilates reformer is a fantastic tool for those who want to make some changes in their body structure. However, you need to know how often and long your workouts will be before getting started with this form of exercise.

Hope this article has helped you understand how often you should do reformer Pilates, so now go ahead and get your perfect workout plan to achieve the most results.