What to expect in Pilates

Pilates focuses on small movements that require core strength and muscle endurance with the emphasis on stabilising muscles that strengthen your trunk and body. It works on muscle imbalances, your posture and correct alignment. You will begin to discover things about the body that you never knew before.

How long does it take to see results in Pilates.

In 10 sessions you will feel better.

In 20 sessions you will look better.

In 30 sessions you will have a whole new body.

By doing 2-3 classes per week, you should start to see results in 10-12 weeks. 

There are 34 classical mat Pilates exercises, however, in a class we use many different variations of these exercises to make it interesting and more challenging. Listed below are a few popular classical exercises often used in a class.

The Roll Down

A warm up exercise to relieve back tension and stretch the back of the legs. The rolling motion helps to improve blood circulation throughout the body. Great move to strengthen the abdominals, plus increases mobility in the back, spine, neck and hamstrings.

The Hundred

Performed Lying on your back.

Develops muscular strength and endurance of all the abdominal muscles and front and inner thigh muscles.

Shoulder Bridge  

Performed lying on your back.

Increases strength and endurance of the abdominal muscles, glutes, hips and lower back.

Improves posture and teaches you how to stabilize your shoulders.

One leg Circle

Performed lying on your back

Promotes pelvic stability and hip mobility. Will challenge the body’s ability to move to a lengthened leg from the hip while maintaining a stable pelvis and spine.

The Scissors

Performed lying on your back. Promotes bodily awareness, balance and control, and increases the flexibility of the hamstrings and the hips. Strengthens the abdominals and leg muscles.

What equipment do I need?

You don’t need to spend a small fortune to attend a class. Over time if you find you are hooked it is then worth investing in a few items that will compliment and enhance your practice. This list is by no way exhaustive, I have just chosen the most practical and useful tools available to further develop your strength, balance, mobility and flexibility.

Firstly, you will need to be in comfortable, un-restrictive clothing, however, nothing too baggy that could get caught or distract your workout.

Exercise Mat  

You will need a mat, it is our recommendation that you purchase your own mat. You can buy inexpensive ones for around £5-10, they will initially serve you well, however, they tend not to last too long. We recommend investing from £30 upwards for a decent mat that can be used for both Yoga and Pilates. (A limited amount are available to use on a temporary basis in the class).


Can be used during a class when blocks and straps are not available. Great for sitting on to allow your hips to open and to lengthen your spine for better posture. Also, place below your knees for extra support. Bring your own along to class.

Yoga/Pilates Block

This is a good investment, and we feel is absolutely necessary to develop your practice and promote good posture. Yoga and Pilates blocks make poses more accessible to you by providing support, and ensuring proper alignment. They can help the body stretch and strengthen without undo strain. The great thing is they only cost around £5 for a decent one. (A limited amount are available to use in class).

Yoga Straps/Belts

This is an extremely useful tool when it comes to developing your mobility and flexibility. They stretch tight hamstrings and tight shoulders, improving your range of motion. A strap can help you to achieve poses that were previously inaccessible, and can even help you to achieve proper alignment. They are usually made from adjustable non-pliable fabric and they cost around £5 or less. (I have a limited amount available to use in class).

Yoga Bolsters

A large soft sausage shape pillow providing the body stability. It is used to provide comfort, support poses and increase stretching during restorative postures. We recommend the use of a bolster if you feel you need extra support for your body. They range from around £30 to £50. The more in tune you become with your body will guide you to possibly invest in one.

Pilates Ring

This is a resistance ring that allows you to do a variety of different exercises for the upper body, waist and legs. It’s a fun prop to use in class and is great for deepening mind-body connection and toning your muscles. They cost around £10. I will sometimes dedicate a whole session to a Pilates ring workout.

Pilates Ball

A small inflatable ball that allows you to work your core in ways you can’t do with standard crunches or large balls. It’s a fantastic prop to use in a class and really challenges the whole body through a variety of strengthening exercises. We will sometimes dedicate a whole session to a Pilates Ball workout. Balls are provided in the class, however, you can purchase on for as little as £6.

Yoga blanket

As long as it feels comfortable any blanket can be used during a yoga class. It good to bring a blanket to provide extra warmth during the calm and still periods of your class. If the body becomes cold, the mind is likely to wonder, making relaxation somewhat more challenging.


This list is by no way exhaustive, I have just chosen the most practical and useful tools available to enhance your practice, and further develop your strength and flexibility.

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