How to Move your Pilates Equipment Part 1: Packing Up

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Moving your Pilates equipment can be a daunting task.  You’ve invested a lot of money, sweat, and energy in your equipment, so how do you make sure it all makes the journey in one piece? Whether you are moving across town or across the country, in this two-part series I’ll share my best tips to make the move smooth.

Note: These tips are geared toward moving equipment yourself, however, many of them will be helpful even if you have professional movers as they don’t often take the time to fully disassemble and prepare your equipment to be moved.  

In this first installment, I want to talk about how to pack up your equipment so you don’t lose anything en route.

Tools and Supplies

In order to pack your equipment and accessories well, I recommend going to your local hardware or moving store to pick up a few items. 

  • Cardboard boxes of varying sizes
  • Packing Tape
  • Masking Tape
  • Plastic moving wrap (the saran-wrap stuff you see in the photos)
  • The tools that came with your equipment (i.e. Allen wrenches) for disassembly
  • A few sizes of English combo wrenches and sockets for disassembly

In addition, I like to have some old towels, blankets, and either newspaper or bubble wrap to pack anything that is fragile or needs protecting from bumps and knocks.  If you are moving your equipment yourself, renting those moving blankets will help cushion things in the truck a lot!

What to Pack

It’s tempting to just throw all your little bits and pieces in an upside down sitting box and put them in the truck, but I urge you to take a little bit more time to get organized so you’ll know where all the little bits and pieces are when it’s time to set up your equipment in your new space.  

Sometimes you don’t know who is going to move which boxes, how long your equipment will be sitting or get moved around the new space, and which accessories go with which equipment.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to set up equipment after it’s been moved and critical parts are missing!

To avoid all this confusion, I use cardboard boxes and organize them by type of equipment. On the outside of each box, I write what exactly is in each box, including how many of each thing so I can easily check once I arrive at the new space.  

This is also helpful for double checking that I get everything in the box in the first place.  I’m moving eight Towers? I should have 16 T-pins. If not, I’m missing one somewhere!

Take a look at the image above for an example of how I labeled a box.  I was only moving 1 Reformer/Tower Combo and 1 Chair, so I didn’t list quantities.

Big Stuff

There are a few things that you should do to make sure everything that doesn’t fit in smaller cardboard boxes travels well.  

On a Cadillac, once the canopy poles are removed from the base, place masking tape over any set screws on the receivers.  Front and back! This will keep those screws from rattling out in transit and leaving you with a Cadillac that can’t be assembled at the new location.

Use the plastic moving wrap to secure all the poles together.  If you have a chair, wrap the chair handles together.

On a chair, use your plastic moving wrap to secure the pedal and springs to the base of the chair so that when the movers lift it, it doesn’t rattle around.

On a Reformer, secure the footbar to the frame, if possible.  For example, with a Revo footbar, fold it down inside the frame and use your plastic moving wrap to secure it in place.  

If you have an Infinity footbar or an Allegro 1 or 2, you have the option to remove the footbars before moving.  It may make your tetris game in the back of the truck easier, however, it is more separate parts to keep track of.  It it totally up to you. I usually err on the side of renting too big of a truck so I don’t need to stress about fitting everything in perfectly.

On any equipment, use masking tape to secure loose pieces to the frame.  For example, lanyards and pins for metal risers. 

By now, you should get the idea: First, pack easily disassembled small stuff in boxes.  Second, wrap disassembled big stuff together so it doesn’t bang around and is easy to carry in and out of the truck.

Hopefully following these tips will ensure that you have several boxes and frames that will be easy to transport without losing or damaging bits and pieces along the way.

Stay tuned for the next installment when I will share my strategy for packing the truck or van effectively so you don’t have to worry about your equipment in transit.

These tips are geared toward moving equipment yourself, however, many of them will be helpful even if you have professional movers as they don’t often take the time to fully disassemble and prepare your equipment to be moved.

In this first installment, I want to talk about how to pack up your equipment so you don’t lose anything en route.

Tools and Supplies

The tools I use for moving Pilates equipment are:

  • Cardboard boxes of varying sizes
  • Packing Tape
  • Masking Tape
  • Plastic moving wrap
  • The tools that came with your equipment (i.e. Allen wrenches) for disassembly
  • A few sizes of English combo wrenches and sockets for disassembly

What to Pack

It’s tempting to just throw all your little bits and pieces in an upside down sitting box and put them in the truck, but I urge you to take a little bit more time to get organized so you’ll know where all the little bits and pieces are when it’s time to set up your equipment in your new space.  

Sometimes you don’t know who is going to move which boxes, how long your equipment will be sitting or get moved around the new space, and which accessories go with which equipment.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to set up equipment after it’s been moved and critical parts are missing!

To avoid all this confusion, I get some cardboard boxes and organize them by type of equipment. On the outside of each box, I write what exactly is in each box, including how many of each thing so I can easily check once I arrive at the new space.  

This is also helpful for double checking that I get everything in the box in the first place.  8 Towers? I should have 16 T-pins.  If not, I might be missing one somewhere!

To get you started, here are some examples of what parts I package up in separate boxes.

Reformer

  • Ropes/Leather straps
  • Handles and Loops
  • Springs
  • Risers
  • Footstrap
  • Shoulder Rests and pins/bolts

Chair

  • Handles
  • Handle Knobs

Cadillac

  • Trapeze and springs
  • Springs
  • Loops and handles
  • Foot loops and fuzzies
  • Safety Strap
  • Push-Through Bar T-pins and 4th side (if applicable)
  • Hand grips (if applicable)

Final tips

There are a few things that you should do to prevent losing pieces or damaging equipment before the movers come, because they won’t always to do it themselves.

On a Cadillac, once the canopy poles are removed from the base, place masking tape over any set screws on the receivers.  Front and back. This will keep those screws from rattling out in transit and leaving you with a Cadillac that can’t be assembled at the new location.

On a chair, use your plastic moving wrap to secure the pedal and springs to the base of the chair so that when the movers lift it, it doesn’t rattle around.

On a Reformer, secure the footbar to the frame, if possible.  For example, with a Revo footbar, fold it down inside the frame and use your plastic moving wrap to secure it in place.

On any equipment, use masking tape to secure loose pieces to the frame.  For example, lanyards and pins for metal risers. 

If you can make it so that all your movers have to do is pick up some boxes and frames and carry them to the truck, that will help ensure you receive a

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