Music + Pilates = Tempo Pilates

There are many things that I’ve enjoyed about not having a job for the last 5 months. At the top of that list is being able to see more of my friends and having plenty of time to exercise. So when a good friend Lisa invited me to join her at her local pilates class, Tempo Pilates, I jumped at the chance. She’d been raving about how great it was for a while so I wanted to find out what all the fuss was about.

Tempo Pilates offer Reformer Pilates classes set to music. That’s not just a pilates class with music playing in the background but a class actually set to the beat of the music. I’d never been on or even seen a Reformer machine before so when I first arrived at the studio in East London I was intrigued to see what one look like.


My first thought was that it looked incredibly complicated but I was soon put at ease by Jane the trainer who explained what all the different parts were. She also suggested that I keep one eye on what Lisa was doing to make it easier to follow.

The class started with us lying face up on the carriage and performing a series of movements with a pilates ring, most of which are similar to ones that I’d come across in mat pilates classes. The main and striking difference was the movement of the carriage and the additional resistance based aspect that this brings to the moves. It adds a completely different dimension to mat work and makes it quite a lot tougher on the legs while delivering a truly challenging core workout at the same time.

The second part of the class saw us doing tricep dips on the side of the carriage, lunges and bicep curls while standing on the carriage and some oblique work using the ropes attached to the top of the reformer.

Throughout the class Jane’s instruction was rhythmic and clear. Options were given at each stage to make things easier for beginners or more challenging for those more experienced. I absolutely loved the playlist – each track had just the right tempo for the moves we were doing and it felt like it had been really well thought through, rather than just a random selection playing in the background.

Lisa had warned me that Tempo Pilates was addictive and she was right. I really enjoyed my first class and soon signed up for more. I was pleased to find that after only a few classes I was able to progress to the more challenging intermediate moves – at each class there’s always something to make things more challenging, something to try and improve upon.

The second part of the class is different every time which I love. You never know what’s coming next and there’s always some new and challenging way to use the reformer that takes me by surprise. And with a maximum of 10 people the classes feel intimate  – it’s not long before you’re recognised and greeted by name and I like that.

I start my new job on Monday so my weekday sessions at Tempo E8 won’t be possible anymore, but I’ll definitely be back at the weekends. Luckily Tempo also have a studio in Gymbox in Covent Garden which is far more convenient for my workplace so I hope to be able to go to some sessions there.

I’m really glad that I’ve discovered Tempo Pilates – it’s added a different dimension to my weekly workout schedule and is without a doubt helping to improve my core and overall body strength. I am hooked!

To give you a taster of the Tempo Pilates soundtrack here’s my favourite track from their February playlist. I find myself breaking out into involuntary crunches whenever I hear this track. That’s the power of Tempo Pilates!

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