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Ask the Expert: What’s the difference between the Arc Barrel and Stability Barrel™ Lite?

The Merrithew® Arc Barrel and Stability Barrel Lite are great props to incorporate into any STOTT PILATES® Matwork routine to add variety and challenge. Use them to target different muscle groups, increase range of motion, and for spinal support and torso stabilization. In this video, Master Instructor Trainer Laureen DuBeau compares the unique features of the Arc Barrel and Stability Barrel Lite and talks about the types of clients and circumstances they’re each best suited for.

Arc Barrel

The Arc Barrel has a gentler curve than Merrithew’s larger barrels, but a more pronounced curve than the Stability Barrel Lite. This prop is ideal for clients who want to increase their flexibility and range of motion. It’s also suitable for those with shorter torsos.

As one of our smallest barrels, it’s light and portable, making it easy to move around the studio. Since it’s also closer to the ground, it makes inverted positions much easier to achieve.

Stability Barrel Lite

The Stability Barrel Lite’s curve is very subtle, making it suitable for clients with less flexibility and mobility in the spine. Since it has a slightly larger surface area than the Arc Barrel, clients with longer torsos often find it more comfortable for side bends and extensions.

Laureen’s favorite aspect of the Stability Barrel Lite is its dual-purpose design. It can be used on both the curved side and the flat side. The gentle curve provides support for multidimensional movements and the flat platform allows you to introduce instability into the repertoire, challenging balance and control in multiple planes of motion.

It's 15 lbs lighter than the original wooden Stability Barrel and can be stacked on its side for easy studio storage. It also comes with an additional mat that can be used on the floor beside the Stability Barrel Lite or on top of it for added padding and support.

Shop Merrithew’s barrels >

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