Pilates Mat is Made to Do At Home
Perhaps you have been doing a bit of research on Pilates exercise 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.
Do not 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 Pilates mat area if you want for approximately $100.
Even if you do Pilates in a studio with equipment, you may want to supplement your sessions with some Pilates Mat workouts at home.
What You Need
- A Good Pilates Mat
In Pilates there are a lot of exercises where you are rolling on your spine, and a thin yoga mat or towel will not be enough to cushion your bones.
You want a thicker mat, at least 1/2” thick. The mat should be your most expensive purchase.
- Pilates Books, DVDs, Audios, or Apps
Alycea Ungaro, Brooke Siler, Ellie Herman, and Mari Winsor, among others, all have good books and DVDs out which will show you how to do the exercises. There are also many good DVDs, and even some great audio downloads (including mine) that you can follow. There are also some fabulous Pilates YouTube channels, podcasts, apps, and other free resources on the web.
- 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 stability ball is also not particular to Pilates, but was adopted by Pilates teachers as an inexpensive tool that adds equipment-like stability challenges to the mat exercises for about $25.
- Stretchy bands can be used to mimic spring resistance and cost about $5.
- Joseph Pilates also used small weights when teaching his clients, so some 2-5# hand weights can be helpful as well. These are usually priced per pound of weight.
If you have never done Pilates at all I encourage you to try a session or group class in a studio simply to get good corrections and an understanding of the basics of Pilates exercises and good form. You may find that even with a solid home Pilates practice a check in at a studio every few weeks may be a good idea.