Studio or Matwork?

Both Studio Apparatus and Matwork can facilitate profound changes in the body, when they are practiced holistically within the original principles and taught by a qualified Pilates Foundation Teacher.

Our comprehensively trained teachers undergo in depth study of the Pilates Method as a complete body of work, and their further training in working with specialised / chronic conditions allows them to join the register of NHSTA Complementary Health Pracitioners.

Pilates can be taught in a specialised Pilates studio or in an open area with mats and small equipment. Both Studio Apparatus and Matwork can be taught privately or in small groups, most classes last between 60-90 minutes.


What Type of Pilates is best for me?

  • The broad variety of exercises available allow for Pilates sessions to be tailored to each client's individual needs. Certain medical and rehabilitation conditions require studio apparatus sessions. Your Pilates Foundation Teacher will be happy to advise you on your individual needs.
  • Studio classes tend to be more expensive than group Matwork classes as a dedicated space is required and greater individual attention is usually provided.
  • In some ways Matwork classes can be more advanced, as there is no apparatus to support the movement; it is your body working against gravity that provides the biggest challenge in a Matwork class.
  • Choosing a class that is convenient for you to participate on a regular basis in terms of time, location and cost should be considered.

Working harder is often not the goal of a Pilates class. It is through thoughtful, precise movement practice that habitual patterns can significantly change and the benefits of the method are felt.


Studio Apparatus

  • Must be practiced in a specialised Pilates Apparatus studio; apparatus utilises spring loaded resistance, gravity and movement to assist or challenge the body as required to perform the exercises.
  • Studio classes often offer a higher level of individual attention; classes are taught either one-to-one or in small groups of up to 6 clients.
  • Apparatus sessions are particularly helpful in rehabilitating injury, aiding with specialised conditions and reaching specific training goals. The support available from the apparatus facilitates the ability to target very specific muscle groups that can be difficult to identify without the apparatus feedback.
  • Traditional studio apparatus are called: the Reformer, the Cadillac, the Wunda Chair and the Ladder Barrel. Both Matwork and Apparatus based sessions utilise various pieces of small equipment and props that are useful in promoting long lasting results.


"Constantly keep in mind that... true flexibility can be achieved only when all muscles are uniformly developed." - Joseph Pilates



  • Matwork classes don't require a dedicated space in which to teach them; Matwork is taught in local halls, dance, fitness or health centres, or in-office and at-home, it can also be practiced as homework.
  • Matwork can be taught on a one-to-one or small group basis, but it is the availability (and cheaper cost) of the larger Matwork classes that has helped Pilates gain in popularity around the world over the past 10 years. Ideally Matwork classes are no larger than 15 students, to ensure personal attention can be provided.
  • Matwork exercises are performed in various positions a mat, sometimes using small pieces of equipment (balls, blocks, bands, chairs, etc) to assist or challenge the body as needed.
  • Open Matwork classes are taught to a more general audience, than the personalised attention that can be given in a one-to-one, small group or studio environment.

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