Say hello to my new friend! Isn’t she gorgeous? It’s the Pilates Power Gym.! Part Pilates, part strength training – ALL fabulous!

Although I have been oh so all about Zumba lately, I have been wanting to take a pilates class FOREVER! I would peek into the exclusive Pilates private gym area trying to see what all the fuss was about. They looked liked they were in traction in those contraptions. GAH! I mean graceful and glowing but in traction nonetheless. I pulled the brochure to see how much this torture would add to my monthly membership! I would need an affilliate flood to pay that!

But then suddenly,…as if out of thin air,… like a fluffy girl’s fairy Godmother came…. *wait for it* …..Ahhhh*singing like angels* HSN!

I was randomly flipping channels not even paying attention, and out of the corner of my eye….what?! That’s not at ALL like those contraptions! It’s sleek and…well, beautiful! I was mezmerized! In a carol ann like state, just staring. I watched the silver haired vixen work her footstrapped legs like a prancing deer. Certainly this was a message from God! Pilates, Free Shipping,Reasonable Price, FLEX PAY? Quick! Quick I said, “where’s the phone”. “They’re gonna sell out , hurry!”.

The ordering was fast and flawless. Customer service centers everywhere should take note! It arrived early, well packaged and nearly fully assembled (very little to be done). I set it up and it’s a sturdy 16″w x 48″ l 23″ h if measuring to the top of the bar. HSN tossed in the “optional” push up bar and footstraps (no doubt it was already padded into the price but I didn’t care). HSN offered an extended warranty and padded mat. I didn’t buy either. If I had it to do again, I would probably take the mat. The machine is heavy and has left deep marks in my rug. The unit is mobile and can be easily moved.

The machine works by engaging 4 tension cords in combinations and in conjunction with your body weight on the carriage/slideboard. The slideboard is adjustable for height and size, holds up to 300 lbs and the 2 position headrest is fab! The guys can use it too! Mr. Blogomama says it’s great for golf & baseball exercises. The four tension cords claim 16 possible settings that in combination with 11 carriage/slideboard positions, can give you over 175 possible resistance settings. I think I have a ways to go on this one!

Included were two workout dvd’s, a comprehensive owners manual, nutrition guide, push up bar exercise & instruction pamphlet, and resistance chart:

The DVD’s were varied. The first one I tried (Marlo Fisken 2 in 1 workout) was too fast for me. Being a novice, I couldn’t keep up not so much with the exercises (well as far as I got) but with the transitions. Admittedly, I gave up quickly but I would not recommend starting with this one. The second dvd is two parts. I did the strength training first. The set design is super cheezay and the narrator/trainer is horribly distracting. From his half headed ponytail down to his Richard Simmons short shorts. I had to cut him off at his Danskins! Blec! The the second half (Pilates Power Workout) was just right! One female instructor, Terri Nakamura who is a physical therapist and certified Pilates instructor. She is on the same cheezay set but is very clear, concise and not at all annoying. This part is a great 42 minute (perfect length) workout for beginners! I Googled her, the credentials are real.

The Owners Manual is 1/2 technical manual and 1/2 Pilates 8 week workout progression plan. It very clearly diagrams exercises with the exercise level, tension and position required. I found it to be very thorough. It also states the body part each exercise targets, in case your aching muscles don’t! I’m way about that. It’s like Pilates for dummies cliffnote style.

The Nutrition Guide is about 50 pages, includes very clear and concise information and details. Menus are broken down by plans ranging from 1200-2000 calories. I appreciated that it could be geared toward men or women. Since this IS a “home” gym. They were spot on with this.

The Push-Up Bar exercise & instruction guide very clearly diagrams exercises.

The Resistance Chart seems to be more for the advanced. I think I’ll need to study more to understand the nomenclature used, i.e.: 90/90 position.

Overall, the machine is easy to use. The handstraps and footstraps. are relatively easy to change. It would be great tho if they could just include another latch per footstrap so you can unhook the whole handle with the latch instead of just the handle. That’s sort of a pain! The tension cords are quick and easy to transition and the glideboard is quiet, but not silent. The pulley balls are a little annoying across your body when you’re doing some leg work.

This is a workout I have done every day without whining!

Blogomama says: “I Likey A LOT!”