Common Core

Written by May Phan Category: Health & Fitness Issue: December 2017
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Valley posers rejoice – there’s a Pilates studio tailored just for you.

The Body Lab; photo by Angelina Aragon
The Body Lab; photo by Angelina Aragon

Yoga’s myriad schools are well-known – vinyasa, hatha, kundalini, Bikram – but Pilates? The low-impact, full-body fitness system focused on core strength has its own unique varieties. Grab your yoga mat or stretch out on a reformer apparatus and sample the sundry sects throughout the Valley.  

Reformed Pilates
Reformed co-founder Laura Morgan says Pilates connects the mind, body and breath while building functional strength – the kind of strength that improves posture and helps people “move with ease” in their daily lives. The studio incorporates cycling and reformer classes for the “perfect complementary workouts,” Morgan says. The two workouts, she adds, are both low-impact and high-intensity, which help clients see results without making themselves susceptible to injury. The first class is free; reform and cycling classes start at $30 and $15, respectively. Monthly memberships can be purchased at $100-$200 a month for unlimited classes, or $450 for a three-month membership.
Five Valley locations,

The Body Lab
There are plenty of variations of Pilates, but no matter the type, “it’s intense – for pretty much every muscle group you can think of,” says The Body Lab lead instructor Adam Maielua. He says The Body Lab has carved out its own niche in Pilates: The studio uses the MegaFormer, a riff on the traditional reformer machine, that keeps classes challenging – and exhausting – but doesn’t ruin your joints. Instructors push the intensity of the program so “the class never gets easy,” Maielua says. A single session is $30 and monthly memberships start at $139. An unlimited membership starts at $199 a month.
Phoenix and Scottsdale locations,

Club Pilates
Pilates is like “magic,” says Club Pilates Downtown Phoenix owner Jennifer Marrinan, who says it “counteracts” all the things people do daily that are terrible for posture and helps bring the body back into its “natural alignment.” Marrinan says the routine works out small, discrete muscles that are easy to miss, like the muscle that runs along the spinal cord, and is beneficial for those seeking to improve their flexibility. Club Pilates aims to keep Pilates affordable with larger, 12-person group sessions, she says. The studio offers reformer-based routines, cardio-centered workouts and unique suspension training utilizing the TRX system. Newbies can enjoy a free introductory class, and membership prices range from $89 to $169. An eight-pack membership (two classes per week) costs $139 and new clients get 20 percent off for the first month.
Nine Valley locations,

The Pilates Barre
Pilates Barre owner Jamie Gore takes a more contemporary approach toward Pilates and fuses the practice with physical therapy to make it safer for all. “There are some [movements in classic Pilates] that might be safe for some people, but not safe for all people,” Gore says. “We just removed those from the equation.” The studio offers group classes all week, which range from sessions using a reformer machine to classes incorporating the ballet barre. A single class starts at $30 and a monthly membership (with one class a week) is $75. A monthly unlimited membership costs $170.
777 E. Thunderbird Rd., Phoenix, 602-571-6082,