This page is dedicated to the some of the most popular Pilates exercises, using snippets of footage and instruction from the app.  Explore a variety of Pilates routines for all levels, from beginners to advanced practitioners.
Discover the best Pilates exercises to lose weight, the best Pilates exercises to improve posture, what Pilates exercises our community have been doing to recover from various injuries and our top exercises for menopausal symptoms.

Bridge With Heel Raise

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced

Bridging is my all-time favourite Pilates move.

They’re great exercise for posture, hip & spine mobility, core, back, leg & glute strength and they improve knee & ankle stability which in turn improves your balance.
Beginner Bridge exercises are likely to be featured among the list of rehabilitation exercises you’ll be prescribed following knee or hip surgery, because bridges are low impact and focus on building muscle whilst maintaining good alignment.
Bridges are also a surprisingly relaxing exercise, which is an unusual attribute for something so effective.

Toe Taps

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced

Toe taps are a fantastic exercise for deep core strength, particularly your lower abs. They also strengthen your hip flexors and quads. Modified Toe Taps are a safe core exercise if you’re suffering with pelvic organ prolapse, as they create less of a downwards internal pressure than if you’re doing a curl up. However, you’ll need to take it down a level by keeping one foot on the ground, as you lift the other leg to tabletop and slowly toe tap towards the ground. This modification is also a very effective post-partum abdominal exercise once you’ve been cleared to exercise at your 6-week check. Whether you’re post-partum, or suffering with a pelvic organ prolapse, always be led by your doctor or healthcare professional. They’ll guide you as to what exercises are safe for you depending on your particular stage.

Side Lying Inner Thigh Lift

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced

This exercise is deceptively difficult and effective in equal measure!
It’s one of the best exercises to slim your waist by working your deep core, consisting of your internal & external obliques and your transverse abdominis.
The exercise also tones your inner & outer thighs without equipment and strengthens your side glutes (glute medius) to boot!

Oblique Twist With Leg Extension

Exercise suitable for: Intermediate/Advanced

If you’re short for time and you want an intermediate Pilates exercise that works all your ab muscles, as well as your legs, then this is for you! This exercise will strengthen your obliques, six-pack (rectus abdominis), hip flexors, quads and calf muscles as you point your toe. Your spine will get a workout too as you move into spine flexion and rotation, and there’s multiple secondary muscles which assist the movement, so you might be surprised to learn that your glutes and hamstrings get a workout too.
This exercise demonstrates the wonder of Pilates – It truly
is a full body workout!

Spine Stretch

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate

Want to lengthen your hamstrings and stretch your spine and lower back?
Then this beginner to intermediate Pilates exercise is for you.
The deep, small muscles which run along your spine are stretched & strengthened as you bend forwards, so it’s a great exercise for spine strength & spine mobility. It’s also an effective glute max stretch, hamstring stretch and calf stretch. Plus, even though you’re bending forward, the rectus abdominis is worked, as are the internal & external obliques. Taking the arms level to your ears also strengthens your shoulders and upper arms.
Another wonderful example of how Pilates exercises work your whole body!

Single Leg Glute Bridge

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced

This Pilates exercise is amazing for building your glutes and hamstrings. It strengthens the rest of the posterior chain too, so it’s an effective exercise for improving posture. Taking your body weight onto one side at a time, challenges & strengthens the muscles of the knee & ankle joint meaning it’s also fantastic for mobility and balance. These attributes make it one of the best strengthening exercises for skiing, snowboarding & running. It’s a brilliant weight bearing exercise for anyone looking to build bone mass in the lower limbs. It’s one of my go-to exercises when teaching women in the perimenopausal & menopausal phase, as building bone density is often a prime goal. To take it down a level, you can hold in elevated bridge position and take one leg at a time to table-top position before carefully placing the foot down in line with your hip joint.


Dart With Shoulder Retraction

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate

Want an exercise to counteract stooping forward? Then this is for you!
This beginner to intermediate exercise works your deep back extensors, as well as the middle and upper back.
This is also the exercise that made me fall in love with Pilates! I couldn’t believe how effective it was at targeting the small deep muscles of the spine that I didn’t know existed!
Even after years of body pump and lifting free weight in the gym, it’s this exercise that made the most difference to my fight against rounded shoulders… that and finding a neutral position of my pelvis. The action of retracting the shoulders blades works the rhomboids which are the muscles which help keep your shoulder blades flat to your back. If you suffer from neck and shoulder pain, lack of scapular stability could be the reason. If this is you, this exercise will help.

Half Roll Back

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate

The Half roll back is a very effective beginner and intermediate core Pilates exercise. It’s a great way to strengthen the deep core muscles as well as the hip flexors and it’s the perfect way to build up to more advanced exercises such as the Roll Up and Neck Pull.
The Half Roll back is also one of the best core exercises for pregnancy, delivery, and post-partum abdominal recovery. It works the transverse abdominis, which is not only the most important muscle to help avoid diastasis recti, but it’s also one of the muscles that’s used in the pushing phase of delivery. You’re encouraged not to work the rectus abdominis during pregnancy and straight after delivery, so rather than overlook ab exercises all together, incorporate this into your daily routine to gently and slowly reclaim your core, once you’ve had your 6-week check of course. It’s really important to draw your navel to your spine, or towards your baby if you’re pregnant! This will engage the transverse abdominis and stop the rectus abdominis doming (bulging). Take things slowly and reduce the range of motion. You shouldn’t expect to roll back as far as I do in the demonstration video.

Roll Up

Exercise suitable for: Intermediate/Advanced

This is an intermediate to advanced core exercise, and it’s one of my personal favourites. It’s one of the best exercises for your 6 pack (rectus abdominis), but it also works the front of your legs, that’s the quads, hip flexors, and the tibialis at the front of your shins.
Along with this, it works your obliques, transverse abdominis, serratus anterior and your anterior shoulder muscles.
Did I mention that it also improves spine mobility and strength?!
Quite a list, so it’s a great one to build up to from the Half Roll back, which is also featured in this list.

Full Plank On Hands

Exercise suitable for: Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced

Planks features in most exercise forms and with good reason – when done properly they’re mighty effective and work multiple muscles groups at once.
Planks are suitable for beginners, intermediates and advanced alike, it’s just a question of whether you’re on your elbows, hands, knees, or feet.
This is a full plank on hands, but no matter your level of plank, planks are a great exercise for core strength, shoulder strength, shoulder stability, and posture. Your quads, glutes, triceps, and serratus anterior also get a workout.
Watch the video to hear tuition on how to plank properly. The key in is your alignment, shoulders over wrists, and in regard to full plank on hands, ears, hips and heels in one line. Plus remember to breathe!