Good Moves

This No-Prop Pilates Workout Breaks Down Basics for Beginners

Photo: Good +Moves/ Well + Good Creative
Have you ever walked into a Pilates class without any idea what you were getting into? If the session included the classic reformer machine, you were likely surprised and maybe a bit apprehensive. The “reformer” machine is sometimes used in Pilates classes to allow for broader ranges of motion and frictionless movement. Other classes involve props like resistance bands, but you can do practice Pilates with zero props.  So, if you want a no-prop Pilates introduction in the comfort of your own home—look no further than the most recent episode of Good Moves. During this beginner Pilates workout, trainer, Pilates instructor, and founder of Go Chlo Pilates, Chloe De Winter delves into the basics with a ton of patience and valuable information.

De Winter says this 15-minute routine is perfect for newbies, people who want a refresher, or anyone craving a low-key Pilates workout to get your week going. So, if you are part of the former group, let's break down some basics first. Pilates is a movement practice that emphasizes slow controlled movements to stretch, strengthen, and increase muscle tone (with emphasis on the core), Rebecca Lubart, founder of Dynamic Body Pilates, previously told Well + Good. "This allows you to increase your strength and flexibility simultaneously, allowing you to find a better range of motion and to move with ease," she said.

To begin, De Winter starts on the floor and guides you through a series of Pilates-style-crunches. Throughout the workout, she moves slowly into seated postures, as well as exercises on the knees and back. Many of De Winter's go-to exercises involve core engagement moves like hip thrusts, crunches, and leg-lifts. However, De Winter reminds us over and over that the most important part of Pilates is breathing."Try not to hold your breath,” De Winter says. “It doesn't matter so much when exactly you're breathing as long as you are making sure you're doing it."

Ready for some deep breaths and stretches? Grab a mat and some comfortable clothes, and let De Winter guide the way.

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