This week I had my first 1:1 Pilates Session with Co Owner of Pilates on Bourke, Brett Webster.  Whilst I have seen the Pilates teachers at Pilates on Bourke take their clients through various exercises on the equipment, I had yet to try them out myself.  For those of you who know me as a person and as an Osteopath, my experience and preference has typically been in the area of strength and conditioning and functional training and I was intrigued to see how and what I would feel like when training with Brett and these different pieces of equipment.  For those of you that are like me and have little understanding of Pilates, I will give you a quick run down on the equipment used and the philosophy at Pilates on Bourke.  The following information on Pilates has been taken directly from the Pilates on Bourke website.

Pilates is a body conditioning method designed to increase strength, flexibility, mobility, balance and body awareness.

As a result, your posture will change and you will move more efficiently. You’ll achieve a strong core, develop longer, leaner muscles and improve your overall sense of well-being. And, if you are a sports enthusiast, Pilates will also improve your game.

Pilates is a safe and effective exercise method that will enable you to look – and feel – your very best. It’s uniquely adaptable for any level of fitness, all types of injuries and any stage of pregnancy. What’s more, because it gives you such a wonderful sense of well-being, you’ll want to do Pilates for the rest of your life!

At Pilates on Bourke we offer classes as either private or semiprivate (up to four clients), all by appointment only.

Studio based Pilates uses apparatus such as the Reformer, Cadillac, Wunda Chair and Ladder Barrel along with other auxiliary equipment.

All classes at Pilates on Bourke are individually tailored, whether one on one or in a small group. The size of the classes ensures that our clients get a level of attention that is second to none.

At Pilates on Bourke there are many different pieces of equipment and I have listed below some of the more common pieces found there.

  • The Pilates Reformer
  • The Trapeze Table/Cadillac
  • The Pilates Chair
  • The Ladder Barrell
  • Sitting boxes and an array of other mobility tools
  • There is also an array of functional training tools used by the Osteopaths at Principle Four Osteopathy and teachers at Pilates on Bourke.  Some of this includes: Plyo boxes, Cable Machine, Kettlebells, Olympic Bar & Platform, Dumbbells, FreeForm Board, Bosu Ball, Swiss Ball and much much more.

I have labelled the equipment below to help give you a better idea of what each piece of equipment is called.


















What was interesting about the 1:1 Pilates Session was that I was asked to perform many movements that are very similar to that of what I do in the gym at Elite Sports Performance where I train.  Brett had me performing the following exercises using a variety of different pilates equipment.  For those in the Pilates know, they probably have specific names, but for those of you who like me don’t know, I will name the exercises based on my understanding from a gym based point of view.  The following types of exercises were performed:

1.  Hip Bridge – Bilateral and Single Leg Hip Bridge

2. Single Leg Hip Bridge with knee extension to load the hamstrings

3.  Abdominal exercises with peripheral arm movements to load the exercise further

4.  Back Extensions

5.  Horizontal pull ups

6. Seated Cable Pressing movements

7.  Seated Cable Pulling movements

8.  Bilateral and single leg hip flexion, abduction and circumduction exercises with resistance

9.  Pikes

10. And a variety of other mobility and strengthening exercises.

Following this first session with Brett it made me realise that Pilates and the equipment is another great tool that can be used to condition the body.  The great thing about the various pilates equipment is that it can be used to regress or progress a client depending on their mobility and strength and can be loaded appropriately to achieve a response.

I would highly recommend those individuals who are either interested in Pilates or would like to try something different to their normal exercise routine to get down to Pilates on Bourke and see one of their great trainers.

For more information about Pilates on Bourke, please go to

This blog was written by Osteopath Heath Williams of Principle Four Osteopathy.  Principle Four Osteopathy is located in both the Melbourne City and Melbourne Docklands.

Principle Four Osteopathy Melbourne City Clinic is located within Jon Weller Personal Training Studio at 29 Somerset Place, Melbourne City 3000.  Open Monday – Friday.

Principle Four Osteopathy Melbourne Docklands Clinic is located within Pilates on Bourke at 717 Bourke St, Melbournel Docklands 3008.  Open Monday, Wednesday & Friday.

Appointments can be made by calling 03 9670 9290 or booking online.