I have been keeping my eye on the KX studios in Melbourne for a while now, eagerly waiting for one to open in the outer south-east. Having dipped my toes into yoga, barre and body balance, I have been keen to give KX Pilates class a try. So I was pretty excited last month when I heard about KX Pilates opening in Berwick. It didn’t take me long to suss out the opening specials (still available!) and get ready for my first class.
KX Pilates is described as a ‘revolutionary, fast paced, high intensity, body-toning workout in just 50 minutes’. It uses a reformer bed to fuse traditional reformer pilates with cardio and endurance training. (To understand a reformer bed, imagine a stationary rowing machine; it has a platform that moves up and down the bed where you lay, sit or stand. You can use straps or a bar to push and pull your body along the tracks for resistance.)
Before my first class, I caught up with KX Pilates Berwick owner, Nikki Sievwright to get the low-down.
What is KX Pilates?
KX is an all-over body strengthening and conditioning workout. It is extremely dynamic and very fun. Honestly, it is not like anything else I had done before. From a toning aspect, the benefits I have personally seen through core and toning work… I did years and years of gym and weights, but KX Pilates changed my body shape, toned, lengthened me. I had a bad back and this has helped me massively.
The classes are really fun, they’re engaging and you don’t get bored. Every class is different.
What is different about KX Pilates and why should people give it a try?
It is an all over body workout and very dynamic. The movements are quicker than traditional pilates and because of the reformer beds we use, it strengthens in a different way. The reformer beds make KX great for all ranges and all ages. We have people from their early 20s to their 70s who come and do it. It is great for joint issues, which so many people have, because there is no impact. The beds take all the impact and you are lying down for most of the class so the bed supports you. You are doing resistance (by using cables and springs of the bed) but there is no impact on joints.
Do you have any advice for beginners to KX Pilates?
Be mindful of what is happening in your body, be mindful of issues or injuries (and let your instructor know!) but go into it with an open mind. The instructor will help and go through the bed set-up and of course, if you’re not sure of anything, stick up your hand. Just relax and enjoy it!
Anybody thinking about it, just come along and do it. You never know what to expect, for most people, they walk out thinking ‘that was nothing like I expected and I enjoyed it more than I expected to’.
How did you get into teaching KX Pilates?
I was a client at the Richmond studio when it was much smaller. I was a PT so I was already in the industry doing group fitness and PT. I’d been going for a while when the owner asked me if I had thoughts about becoming an instructor and before I knew it I was going through the academy. Now I have been teaching for three years.
How are you finding having your own studio?
We’ve only been open a week and it is like a new baby. It is going really well and I am enjoying seeing the other aspects of the company, not just as a trainer. I love it, I am very passionate about it.
Nikki at the KX Pilates studio in Berwick
A first hand review of KX Pilates:
The class I took had a focus on glutes (my weak point) with a bit of arm work thrown in to keep things interesting. I was actually surprised that some exercises were similar to a more traditional gym workout – things like leg presses and chest flies featured but the resistance came from the reformer bed and your body rather than weights. Because you are constantly moving on the reformer bed, most sets also have an element of core work because you need to keep yourself stable on the moving platform or you fall off. It means that you can feel each movement working in multiple areas of your body. As we moved between sets, we often had to swap between the cables underneath the bed to increase or reduce the resistance based on the exercise so it is easy to see how you can start to make adjustments as you gain more strength and experience.
Being a beginners class, most sets started slow, so we could understand the movements and also to get our muscles stretching they way they should for that particular exercise. Although we progressively built up speed, while focusing on form, so you can definitely a little out of breath. It also gives you the chance to work at your own strength and ability without falling behind the rest of the class.
Another thing to note is that it can sometimes be awkward to move between positions and get on and off the moving platform of the reformer bed. There were definitely a few ‘unladylike’ moments as I tried to roll off with my limbs flying every which way!
In all the class went very quickly for me, 50 minutes was over in a flash. What’s that saying, ‘time flies when you’re having fun’? Well it did for me in this class, and I will be back again next week.