According to a Pilates teacher who is a member of the PEERtrainer community, not only is the Total Gym great for pilates, but in many ways is actually is a pilates machine!
Here is the email that we were sent this morning in response to the interview we did with the good folks who run Total Gym.
"I am loving your program and have gotten such great information and assistance, PEERtrainer is well organized and overflowing with helpful articles and inspiration.
I wanted to address the Total Gym recommendation because I am a Pilates teacher and I know that there is a lot of misinformation out there about Pilates, what it is and what it can do for you.
Pilates is a system of exercise as well as a way to live and move, it is meant to be applied to everything you do throughout your day, weight lifting, dancing, sports etc... whatever you do in your daily life you can do with "spontaneous zest and pleasure" in Joseph Pilates words, if you apply the Principles of Pilates.
So I just wanted to add my two cents after watching the Total Gym video. The Total Gym is really a brilliant reworking of the Pilates Reformer designed by Joseph Pilates in the 30's and updated with new materials and put on an angle. The exercises that you do on the Total Gym are basically Pilates exercises. (our emphasis)
The apparatus is meant to assist you in doing the exercises with proper alignment, breath and connection to your center/core or what Pilates called your "Powerhouse". This will keep your musculature balanced and keep you from overworking your external muscles without the support of your deep spinal muscles.
I imagine the instructions that come with the Total Gym encourage you to connect to your center but in my experience many people have very little idea how to locate and engage those muscles if they have not been using them, especially if they are just beginning a fitness regimen as many of your clients may be. This can lead to injury and frustration.
I would recommend that anyone beginning a workout program on the Total Gym make an appointment with a certified Pilates instructor so they can figure out how to work from their core. Even one session could make a huge difference and hopefully lead to a lifetime of safe and correct healthy movement. Thanks for listening, it is my passion so it's hard not to share."
Very interesting email, and it is great to hear this perspective. Overall the response and feedback has been very positive. One person wrote this in the comments section of our interview with Total Gym:
"I can absolutely and unconditionally recommend the Total Gym. The advertisements are accurate. I use it for 30-45 minutes a day, 5-6 days a week and it gives me a terrific strength and aerobic workout. I'm 54 years old, stand 6'-4" and have maintained my weight at around 195 lbs for the past several years because of this piece of equipment. It's definitely worth the investment."
We actually looked up the email address of the person who made this comment and can confirm that he has been a member of the PEERtrainer community for a while.