Do at Home Pilates
Perhaps you have been doing a bit of research on Pilates exercises and are now thoroughly confused. You have seen major pieces of Pilates equipment that you see in studios, which are huge and quite expensive, and even the home versions are not cheap and do take up a fair amount of space.
And, if you have osteoporosis or chronic pain, you may be worried that you need a lot of gear to safely exercise at home.
Don’t be alarmed or worried! You can do an effective Pilates workout at home without any equipment at all; and there are plenty of small, inexpensive, and effective pieces of equipment that you can easily use for a fabulous in-home Pilates workout. You can fully equip your home Pilates Studio for well under $200, and less if you choose to not have everything.
Even if you do Pilates in a studio with equipment, you may want to supplement your sessions with some workouts at home. And, with some small apparatus, you can mimic some of your studio experience!
What You Need
A Good Pilates Mat
In Pilates there are a lot of exercises where you are on your back, your knees, your stomach and sides, and a thin yoga mat or towel may not be enough to cushion your bones. You can double your mat or have a separate thicker mat.
You want a thicker mat, at least 1/2” thick. The mat should be your most expensive purchase.
Pilates Books, Videos, Audios, or Apps
Alycea Ungaro, Brooke Siler, Ellie Herman, and myself all have good books and videos which will show you how to do the exercises. There are even some great audio classes (including mine) that you can follow. There are also some fabulous Pilates YouTube channels, podcasts, apps, and other free resources on the web. Try my Pilates for Back & Neck pain videos on YouTube.
Small Pilates Equipment
- The Pilates ring or magic circle is a small, light, simple, and extremely effective tool to target muscles in your abs, back, hips, thighs, and arms that are crucial for tone and stability. A good ring costs around $30 and will last forever.
- The foam roller is not Pilates equipment but can be effectively added to many Pilates mat routines to add a bit more challenge. Plus you can do some stretching and myofascial work with the roller that will help ease back, neck, and joint pain. A high-density foam roller will set you back $35
- The Tye4® from PhysicalMind is a wearable resistance device that mimics the Pilates apparatus and costs just $75. See the photo of me using my Tye4®.
- Stretchy bands, looped bands, and tubing with handles and a door anchor can be used to mimic spring resistance and an entire set costs about $25.
- Joseph Pilates also used small weights when teaching his clients, so some 1- or 3-pound hand weights can be helpful as well. You can substitute full 16.9oz water bottles (they each weigh 1 pound).
If you have never done Pilates at all I encourage you to try a session or group class with an experienced Pilates teacher simply to get good corrections and an understanding of the basics of Pilates exercises and good form. Doing this online is a good idea, so you are in the same environment where you’ll be exercising.
Now, you may be questioning whether online instruction can be as clear and detailed as in person, and I’m here to say, “Yes!”
Not sure? I encourage you to head over to my Exercise for Bone Health, Strength, & Mobility course in the Wellness Universe Lounge. This donation-based course has a workout in the very first lesson, so you’ll have an idea of how online exercise instruction works.
Connect with Lynda on The Wellness Universe.
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