Pilates For Beginners

Over the past year I’ve received a lot of requests for gentle/beginner Pilates routines. So I’m excited to introduce a new series to you today…Pilates For Beginners.

Pilates For Beginners will be a series of videos that start with the basics and progress week by week. I’ll discuss basic Pilates principles and provide gentle workouts to go along with them.

These will be perfect for anyone who may be in need of gentler workouts. That means those of you who are new to Pilates, returning from pregnancy/childbirth, newly pregnant, or looking to work on the basic Pilates principles to deepen your practice.

Here’s the thing – although I’m titling the series Pilates For Beginners, these videos are for everyone.

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If you’ve been practicing Pilates for a while then you know how important and helpful it is to go back to basics. In fact, the more advanced you get in your Pilates practice the more you can appreciate the foundational movements and principles.

For example, I’ve been doing Pilates for well over 8 years and teaching for 5 of those 8 years. And I still practice very basic Pilates exercises every week so that I can truly get the most out of the method.

Pilates is like an onion.

The more you learn about it, the more you realize there is to know. So going back to the basics after practicing Pilates for a while actually doesn’t feel so basic anymore. There is always more to learn and experience within your own body.


I also know that many of you jump into my free challenges without much formal training, so these are for you too!

The first video will go live next week so this week I just want to get down to business about what Pilates IS and what it IS NOT.

What Pilates IS:

  • a form of exercises invented by Joseph Pilates, originally used to rehabilitate soldiers, later used to train dancers, and eventually spread to the general public due to the effectiveness of the method
  • exercise that focuses on developing a balanced body through strength, flexibility and awareness
  • focused on core training with the understanding that all parts of the body influence the core
  • effective in treating back pain, recovering from injury and reducing stress and anxiety
  • mind/body exercise
  • good for bone healthy and modifiable for osteoporosis
  • focused on precise movements in an effort to maximize efficiency and avoid unnecessary fatigue
  • easily modifiable for all abilities and needs
  • one of the most popular and steadily growing exercises methods out there

What Pilates IS NOT:

  • mindless exercise or a way to go “zone out”
  • focused on going harder to get stronger
  • easy
  • only for women
  • connected to yoga or interchangeable in any way
  • only for your abs
  • about doing 100 reps, squeezing your muscles harder or working to exhaustion
  • a fad

As per usual, I’ll be back with new posts on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of next week. A new video in this series will go live every Friday. 🙂

Have a great weekend!



PS –  Are the specific things you’d like me to include in the series? If so please let me know in the comments.

You may also enjoy 6 Pilates Principles and A Short History of Pilates (<— super cute video).

PPS –  Are you wanting more? Sign up to join the FREE program: Pilates For Beginners

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14 thoughts on “Pilates For Beginners”

  1. Always glad to practice basics again. I’ve read several articles lately, by men, who do Pilates and you state that it is not just for women. Maybe a male guest to work out with you on one of the videos? I know I would love to get my husband to do Pilates. It would be so beneficial for him and I think he might if he saw another male doing it.

    1. Jennifer – I feel the same way! I know your post is old… but my husband has a terrible back and I was telling him HOW GOOD this would be for him! But he’s ashamed/embarrassed to do pilates. I like that Robin says it is not only for women… but then why is it a Sisterhood? I don’t know… I love the idea of women uplifting women and I love the Balanced Life (just joined the Sisterhood in fact!) but I do think it’s sad that this reaffirms the misconception that pilates is for women only 🙁

      1. Hi Gail! I’m so glad you’re encouraging your husband. There are a lot of resources out there for both men and women. The Sisterhood is unique in that it’s geared toward women. We focus on other challenges in life outside of Pilates that are mostly unique to women. In that same vein, I have found that my story and my skill set is best used when serving women and our unique needs and challenges. I also do a lot of one-on-one coaching that gets very personal and feel more comfortable working with women in this regard. My passion is in women coming alongside each other and lifting one another up. Hence, The Sisterhood. 🙂 I am just one Pilates instructor with one focus and there a lot of other resources out there that serve other populations more specifically.

  2. This sounds great! When I happily stumbled onto your website this summer and completed the MindBodyMat challenge, I didn’t know very much at all about Pilates. I really like it, and I love how it makes me feel (body & mind), so it will be great to learn about the basics as I continue my practice.

  3. Perfect timing! I stumbled across your site when looking into Pilates as homework from my physical therapist. I’m a typical almost 40 y/o mom with all kinds of runner’s issues and injuries. She wants me to start Pilates. I joined your running group

  4. So excited!!! First time mom to a 6 month old today! Have missed Pilates since the lady I had been taking from quit teaching about 2 years ago!

  5. Thank you so much, Robin. This is an answer to prayer. I want to learn more about Pilates and begin to practice it. You are the perfect one to teach me. Looking forward to this beginner’s program to set a great foundation to build on.

  6. Thanks so much for pointing out what pilates is, and isn’t! I love doing pilates and have been doing it for along time, but when I try to explain to my friends what it is, I really struggle! It’s good to know that there are specifics and that you put them in such an easy to understand list. I love it!

  7. I love this! One idea… I have a lot of great yogi friends whom I have spoken with about people wanting to compare pilates to yoga. As we delved into conversation regarding the principles of pilates and yoga, we realized how special each were in their own way. Pilates being about stabilization from the powerhouse and working outwards, and for yoga, the grounding coming from the extremities and working inward. I would love to hear other thoughts on this subject as well, because it seems to be a very common topic of conversation.
    Thanks again! 🙂

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