Article by Edna Allen

Photography by Edna Allen

The Big Kahuna of the Pilates world.

With its towering frame and numerous attachments, the Pilates Cadillac may intimidate spectators! However, within a client's first use it becomes an indispensable tool for achieving total body fitness.

A cushioned platform raised approximately 25 1/2 inches off the floor with four vertical posts and two horizontal bars create a canopy bed-like frame. Springs and bars attached in numerous places provide a plethora of exercises where clients can kneel, stand, or lay on their side or in a supine or prone position.

Also known as the trapeze table, the Cadillac designed personally by Joseph Pilates, offers 5 enormous benefits:


The Pilates Cadillac can be tailored to meet the needs of any skill level. 

The main bed of the Cadillac remains stationary and does not move back and forth like the Reformer, it is a great option for beginning students. Getting on the floor or a lower surface like the Reformer may not be ideal for some clients. The Cadillac brings the mat to the student which is ideal for students recovering from injuries or those with balance challenges. The raised platform makes Pilates an option for students who cannot easily get up and down. Elderly students or those with limited mobility feel supported. Likewise, large framed clients have plenty of room to move and the 81” x 29” mat allows for easier transitions between exercises.

However, the Cadillac can also take an experienced client to the next level. Advanced moves requiring balance or full extension like back bends can be done. Spring tension is adjusted depending on strength and skill. So a seasoned athlete and someone recovering from an injury can both benefit greatly from this versatile piece.


The long mat allows ample room to elongate the muscles.

Resistance from the springs assists the client to stretch further than what they could do independently. Attachments like the push-through bar and breathing bar offer a greater range of motion when moving the body. The exercises performed on the Cadillac focus on smooth, controlled movements that stretch and lengthen the muscles.

The trapeze attachment provides exercises to open the hips and stretch the hamstrings. Gravity-based exercises where one hangs from fuzzy loops lengthen the entire body. This is especially favored by athletes and dancers trying to improve your range of motion.

Full-body workout

Want to improve your overall fitness level?

The Cadillac is an essential tool for achieving peak physical performance. Abdominal muscles engage throughout all movements, targeting the upper and lower body. Arms, shoulders, legs, gluteal, and back muscles are active. Various attachments allow for a wide range of exercises that target different muscle groups and challenge the body in different ways. Cadillac exercises target specific muscles to increase strength and control. By using resistance and tension, the client builds lean muscle mass without “bulking up”.

The result is a total body workout that leaves you feeling energized and refreshed.


Set apart from other training regiments, Pilates Cadillac exercises are low-impact and gentle on the joints.

A perfect option to improve fitness without risking injury. Adjustable springs and attachments allow individuals to perform low-impact exercises that build strength and flexibility. Increasing mobility fosters prevention of injuries and encourages natural movement in daily life. As flexibility improves and core strengthens, one can experience a reduction in joint pain and stiffness. Better posture and a stronger core often lead to reduced chances of lower back pain and neck pain. Training on the Cadillac can help prevent injury because Pilates exercises focus on stabilizing the spine and moving in correct alignment. 


Want to move with grace and efficiency and make it look effortless

Slow, controlled movements performed on the Pilates Cadillac promote balance and coordination, leading to a stable and confident physical presence. Many exercises require participants to maintain a position which trains the body to stabilize and balance. Training in this way assists us to do that in everyday life. A favorite quote from Joseph Pilates: “The Pilates Method teaches you to be in control of your body, not at its mercy.”

We lose our ability to balance as we age, so the more we train the muscles needed for balance and control, the healthier and safer we will become. 

Anyone who wants to feel more comfortable and confident in their body will benefit from this valuable piece of equipment. And Better Bodies Pilates in Lee’s Summit at the Woods Chapel location and in Overland Park at 6600 College Blvd have five Cadillacs, uncommon in studios as they are quite expensive and take up quite a bit of space. Both private sessions and classes of five or less are available where corrections on formed are shared by highly trained instructors. Other locations include 400 SW Longview Blvd in Lee’s Summit.

Better Bodies Pilates in Lee’s Summit proudly honors the tradition of Joseph Pilates and the principles of his legacy. Put it on your list and watch your body grow stronger, leaner and more flexible. 

We are dedicated to promoting health and well-being utilizing the Pilates Method of exercise. No Memberships or extra fees. Find more information on how to get started at betterbodiespilates.com.

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