Pilates Based Workout Plans The Complete List Rated and Reviewed
Not only is it easy to confuse Pilates with Yoga, it can be difficult to find the right program. Terms that include “barre” and “reformer” can intimidate beginners, and the thought of trying to achieve balance on a stability ball can have others shaking their heads in disbelief. While some Pilates workout programs do call for these types of exercises, it is important to realize that this is not a standard requirement in all plans. To make it a little easier for you to select the best Pilates workout for you, and to help you understand what these exercises actually require we have the top rated programs rated and reviewed by experienced trainers and licensed medical experts.
Pilates Based Workout Plans for Beginners
Any Pilates focused workout plan can seem a little intimidating, and this can be especially true if you are just starting out. A Pilates workout plan for beginners is often the best program for you, even if you are already in great physical shape. Anytime you start a new fitness program it is always best to start at the beginning. Not only will this reduce your chance of injury, it will help you gain confidence and get the most out of the exercise plan.
Some of the factors to look for will include explicit instructions, this is particularly important if you are exercising at home. DVDs and even pictures are helpful, and some will even provide you with access to experienced trainers and coaches.
The beginners program should concentrate on toning your core, and the best Pilates workout plans start off with an exercise referred to as “the 100”. If you aren’t quite ready to do 100 reps of this warm-up exercise you can simply change it to “the 50”. Other exercise moves that you will want to look for will include,
- Single leg circles
- “Rolling like a cannonball”
- Single leg teasers
These seven exercises when they are repeated, usually in sets of two to five for beginners, will boost metabolism, stretch out and tone muscles, which will help you achieve a lean and toned physique. As your stamina increases you can “up” the number of reps, until you feel confident enough to move on to a more advanced Pilates workout plan.
20 and 30 minute Pilates Workout Plans
One important fact to remember is that a 20 or 30 minute Pilates based workout plan does not mean that this is all you have to do per week to see results. While exercise in any amount is beneficial, in order for you to get the best results you need to perform the 20 or 30 minute sessions three to five days a week.
Some of the exercises that should be included are,
- Standing roll-down (5 reps)
- Dynamic core plank (15 per side)
- Thigh stretch (10 reps)
- Kneeling side kick (10 lifts and 10 circles for each leg)
- Double leg stretch (10 reps)
- Scissors (10 reps per leg)
- The 100 (or 50)
- Side teaser (5 reps per side)
- Swan (5 reps)
- Side leg series (10 kicks and 15 circles per side)
- Roll up (5 reps)
You can adjust the number of reps performed based on the amount of time you are working out, along with your fitness level. These exercises will produce results in beginners and those already familiar with Pilates, and are a great way to get in shape or keep yourself lean, trim and healthy.
Toned in Ten
- Duration: > 12 weeks
- Frequency: 3-5 times per week
- Total Cost:
- Money Back Guarantee
- Fat Burning
- Body Transformation
- Bikini Body
- Gain Strength
- Core Fitness
Pilates Focused Workouts for Home
Just like with almost any other type of fitness program, you can easily perform Pilates at home.
This has the advantage of allowing you to exercise at your convenience, whether it is in the morning, evening or the middle of the afternoon.
Along with making sure that you have the necessary equipment, if it is required, and the right exercises to target your “problem” areas it should also be easy to follow.
Pilates home workouts that come with clear and concise instructions are always recommended, especially for beginners. Some also provide you with access to an online support community, along with experienced trainers.
This can not only help you stay motivated, which can be a little more difficult when you are working out at home by yourself, but it can also answer any questions or concerns you might have about the exercises or how to perform them properly.
Since you will be working out alone, usually without supervision, it is important to make sure that it is safe for you.
Pilates Focused Workout Plans with a Stability Ball
There are a few advantages associated with a Pilates programs that use a stability ball. Using a ball can help improve strength, balance and endurance since the unsteady surface does require your muscles to work harder.
If you are recovering from an injury a stability ball can reduce the amount of strain you are placing on your muscles and spine so you can heal faster. Before you choose a workout plan you will want to make sure that it is safe for you. This is especially important if you have an injury, pregnant or have another health condition.
Some of the Pilates based exercises that you should look for in a top rated workout plan will include,
- Overhead ball squat
- Standing ball squeeze
- Balance push-up
- Back extension
- Tricep dips
- Ball jog
- Knee tucks
- Side squats
This is just an example. You can also create your own workout program to target your upper, lower or core, and there are also several top rated plans for you to choose from.
Pilates Focused Workout Plans for your Core and Abs
Even though Pilates is not necessarily intended for weight loss, it can effectively tone core and ab muscles and give you a taut flat stomach.
Best of all most of the top rated Pilates workout plans can be done by beginners and those who are a little more advance.
Simply adjust the number of reps until you can feel “the burn” without overdoing it. An experienced trainer or your primary care physician can provide recommendations on the number of reps you should be doing.
Some of the best Pilates workout exercises for your core and abs will include,
- Wind down
- Frog leg combo
- Tabletop control
- Side bend
- Crunch series
These exercises are also varied enough so that your chances of becoming bored will be minimal.
Pilates Focused Workout Plans for a Beach Body
The best part about looking for an effective Pilates workout for a beach body is that almost all of them can produce your desired results.
You can choose to tone your upper, lower or core muscles or go for a full body workout. There are some exercises that you might want to make sure is included to ensure that you look your best in a swimsuit.
These often include,
- Crossover roll up
- Bicycle stretch
- Bridge attitude lift
- Extended side crunch
- Long spine roll down
- Towel saw
- Forward scoop to reverse plank
- Swan extension row
- Double plank triangle pose
The number of reps that you perform will depend on your endurance and current fitness level, but most experienced trainers recommend starting off with at least 10. This number can be easily adjusted as needed.
Best of all these exercises do not require additional equipment so you can easily perform them at home.
Some can also be done with a stability ball or on a reformer for added resistance and more noticeable results.
Pilates and Yoga classes do look similar, but there are some marked differences. Pilates is relatively new compared to Yoga which has been around for thousands of years, and it also incorporates different exercises.
Yoga places equal importance on the mind and the body, while Pilates focuses more on improving physical health.
If you are looking to get a toned and lean physique, while also improving balance and flexibility than a Pilates focused workout plan is probably the best choice for you.
You can find several lines of athletic clothing that is marketed towards Pilates at varying prices, but what you decide to wear is really a matter of personal preference.
The main thing to remember when you are looking for shoes and clothing is that it is comfortable to wear, and does not limit your range of motion.
Most experienced trainers recommend wearing clothes that are form fitting, without being too loose or tight. Women may want to invest in a sports bra, just to ensure that they get the support they need.
When it comes to the shoes you also want them to be comfortable, and lightweight, along with being flexible. There is also nothing wrong with doing Pilates in your bare feet or in a pair of socks, as long as they can provide you with a little traction.
It is important to remember a Pilates focused workout is comprised of low impact exercises and this means that you won’t be exerting as much energy as you would in some of the other more intense fitness programs. This is not to say you won’t burn a few calories, just not as many as you might want.
On the other hand the repetitive exercises are a great way to strengthen and tone muscles, especially if you use a reformer or stability ball to increase resistance.
Over time a Pilates focused workout plan can help improve your willpower, and this can give you the edge you need to stick to your healthy diet so you can lose and keep off the extra weight.
A Pilates focused workout plan is a great way to improve your overall health and fitness levels. The low impact cardio exercises can also boost energy levels.
Other benefits include increased flexibility and range of motion, and this can help prevent common injuries due to strained muscles. Pilates can also improve heart health, along with your general mental well-being.
If you are new to Pilates there are a few things you can expect from your workout plan.
You will be doing a lot of repetitive exercises that include squats, planks and push-ups. This will be true whether or not you use equipment. You should also expect to do a lot of stretching, and this is important for increasing flexibility and lengthening your muscles.
Even though this is a basic Pilates focused workout plan you should still expect to feel tired after class. Even low impact exercises will work your muscles when the routine is consistently repeated.
Barre exercises can be an important part of a Pilates, but they also do not have to be included. It really depends on the results you are trying to achieve, along with how much you are willing to put into the workout plan.
These workouts can improve strength and your range of motion, and it can also help you burn a few more calories if weight loss is part of your fitness goal.
Barre workouts can also help to break up the repetitions associated with Pilates, and sometimes this small change is all you need to stay motivated to finish the program.
Every trainer will tell you that it is important to follow a Pilates schedule, and it is absolutely necessary if you want to get the best results.
Even if you create your own Pilates workout, it is still critical that you follow a set schedule.
This includes the number and type of repetitions that you perform, along with the order you do the exercises in.
If you are creating your own Pilates focused workout you might want to get advice from an experienced trainer or a licensed fitness experts. This will help to ensure that the schedule you create is the best one for you.
Most experienced trainers recommend getting in between 50 to 75 hours a week of Pilates in order to get the maximum benefits.
The workout sessions are usually divided into three to five days, and this is also important if you want to get the best results.
Overdoing it can cause injury, even though this is a low impact workout program, and spacing the exercises too far apart won’t effectively strengthen or tone your muscles.
The answer to this question will depend on each individual’s health, along with that of their unborn baby.
While the best person to answer this question will be your primary health care provider, in most cases a Pilates focused workout plan is safe for the expectant mother and child.
This is due to the fact the Pilates is considered a form of low impact cardio and this is generally considered safe for everyone, even if you are pregnant.
You might want to consider foregoing the stability ball or performing exercises on a reformer due to safety issues, especially if you are in your third trimester.
You can tone and strengthen muscles, especially in your core by performing Pilates exercises on a mat. For some people it might even be recommended by their health care advisor due to a preexisting medical condition, injury or their current fitness level.
If you do use a reformer you might start to see noticeable results a little faster, but it should be mentioned that this is not always true in every case.
The main difference between using a mat or a reformer is the amount of resistance. Since a reformer is spring based there is increased resistance, and this is what can help you tone and strengthen upper, lower and core muscles a little faster.
It is possible to get the same results with a Pilates focused workout for home as you would if you take a class at the gym, but there are a few factors you should be aware of.
Pilates focused workouts for home are often considered more convenient, since you can do the exercises on your own time, but it occasionally you might find it difficult to stay motivated.
Beginners can also find it hard to perform the routines correctly, but there are a few ways to ensure you still get maximum benefits.
Pilates focused workout programs that come with instructional DVDs and pictures can help you perform each exercise correctly, even if you are just starting out. Others come with access to an online community that often includes trainers so you can get the support you need to stick with the program, along with a little extra help and advice.
As with any other workout program for home it is always best to speak with your health care advisor before starting any exercise plan.
A Pilates based workout can give you benefits that last all day, though they might not always be the ones you expected. When you start a Pilates based workout plan you will see an increase in energy levels, and your ability to focus and concentrate throughout the day may also be improved.
Having improved balance and range of motion will also stay with you throughout the day, along with increased flexibility. Pilates can also strengthen your willpower, and this can help you stay on a nutritious eating plan so you can successfully lose weight if that is your ultimate fitness goal.
The answer to this question is almost always a “yes”, though it is important for adults over 50 to first check with their primary health care advisor to make sure that a Pilates focused workout plan is safe for them to participate in.
The reason that Pilates is often considered safe for older adults is due to the fact that the workout program can be easily tailored to fit their specific needs. Pilates also provides several benefits that can help adults over 50 enjoy a happy and healthy life.
Some of these can include,
- Pilates based exercises can strengthen muscles and improve overall health.
- It can help improve balance and flexibility, which can be a problem in older adults.
- Posture can be improved preventing a “dowager’s hump”.
- Since it is a low impact exercise program it won’t place extra stress on muscles and joints, which is always beneficial to someone with arthritis.
- The repetitive exercises found in Pilates can also improve and help older adults retain their full range of motion.
As with any type of workout program there are a few downsides associated with Pilates focused exercise plans, though this often depends on the participant and the results that they are trying to achieve.
To help you decide if a workout plan that focuses on Pilates is right for you some of the downsides you should be aware of include,
- Pilates based workout plans are not as efficient for weight loss as some of the more strenuous cardio exercises. (ex. running and swimming)
- In order to get the maximum benefits you must follow and perform the exercises precisely, and this often requires a high level of concentration that can be difficult to achieve.
- The Pilates focused workout plan must be customized to the user if it is being used as a part of rehabilitation therapy.
- Since it does take awhile to see results it is not uncommon for some people to become frustrated and give up on their Pilates based workout plan.
The answer to this question will depend on whether you are doing Pilates at home or in a gym, along with how quickly you want to see results. Your overall health should also be considered, especially if you are recovering from an injury.
In most cases the answer is “no” you do not need to spend extra money on equipment, even if you are working out at home.
If your Pilates focused workout is at the gym you can usually take advantage of the equipment there, though you still have to pay for the class or a membership fee.
If you are recovering from an injury you might want to consider purchasing an inexpensive stability ball. This will reduce the strain on your spine and muscles so you can heal without the risk of reinjuring yourself.
You can find several effective Pilates focused workout plans that do not require the use of additional equipment.
In lieu of a mat you can easily perform the same exercises on the floor, but we do recommend that you try to stay on carpeted areas as a safety precaution. The last thing you want is to injure yourself because you slipped on your hard tile floor.
Exercise balls, reformers and barres are effective and can help you get the most out of your exercises, but you can still get the same results without the use of this equipment.
You will have to work a little harder to get the lean toned physique you are looking for, but in the end the overall results will be basically the same.
Not all Pilates routines call for the use of a stability ball, but there are several advantages to using one. Often referred to as an exercise or balance ball, it provides you with an unstable surface so your muscles work harder.
This ensures that you get the most out of your exercises while minimizing your risk of injury.
Sports trainers often recommend using a stability ball to help get back into shape after suffering an injury since the amount of strain placed on your muscles and spine is dramatically reduced.
A stability ball can be used to strengthen and tone upper and lower body muscles, along with the core. It should be mentioned that only basic Pilates exercises are generally performed on a stability ball like squats, planks and push-ups.
Thanks to the popularity of Pilates you can now find several online videos that will walk you through the exercises, eliminating the need for you to pay the added expensive of a personal trainer.
It should be noted that there are advantages to using a trainer, especially if you are a beginner.
A trainer will ensure that you are performing each exercise correctly so you can get the best results. An experienced trainer can also help you create a Pilates focused workout plan that will help you achieve your desired results.
If you do decided to forego a trainer we do recommend that you first discuss your intended Pilates workout plan with your primary health care provider to ensure that the exercises are safe, and able to produce the results that you want.
There have been several studies done on Pilates and how it can affect sleep patterns.
Researchers were surprised to find that when participants in these studies performed at least 50 minutes of Pilates exercises a week for 15 weeks, they were less likely to experience problems with falling and staying asleep at night.
When you are able to get a good night’s sleep your overall mental and physical health can be significantly improved, and for many people this alone is enough to make them stick with their Pilates focused workout plan.
Even though researchers are still not completely sure how doing Pilates improves sleep, they do believe that the exercises can help participants relax and unwind. Reduced stress and anxiety levels can make it easier to fall and stay asleep so you can wake up refreshed, reenergized and ready to face a new day.
It is also thought that Pilates can make you more “in tune” with your body, and in turn this can also improve your sleep habits.
You can find top rated Pilates focused workouts online and at your local gym.
Your primary health care provider can also recommend exercises that will target specific areas that you are concerned about. Family and friends can be another great source of information, and are often able to recommend a Pilates class or exercise plan that has worked for them.
You can also find the best Pilates focused workout plans at Top Workout Programs. Here you will find routines that have been rated and reviewed by experienced trainers and licensed physicians so you can rest assured that the one you choose will be safe and effective.