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I Went to My First Pilates Class Ever: Here Are 14 Moves for Beginners That You Can Try at Home

Seksan Mongkhonkhamsao | Moment | Getty Images

The Pilates technique has been around since the 1920s, but the workout is having a resurgence thanks to social media — Pilates has 5.3 billion views on TikTok.

Despite the fitness craze being around for literal decades, I'd never tried it—until now.

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I went to my first Pilates class ever at The Spring in Tenafly, N.J. I opted for the more challenging class, Sculpt Pilates, which is "designed to work on core muscles, improve posture, mobility and tone your muscles," according to The Spring.

"I try to encourage some heart-raising exercises and balance challenges during the class to spice it up," said Pilates instructor Noa Harari who led my class.

And, she wasn't joking. This class didn't include use of the standard reformer Pilates machines, but floor Pilates was still extremely challenging, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

14 Pilates moves that you can try at home

We started by warming up our joints and muscles, which is important for elevating performance and preventing injuries, Harari says. Shortly after, we hopped right into the movements, and I definitely felt the burn in my core.

Here are 14 movements we did in class that you can add to your own routine at home:

  1. Roll down
  2. Squat variations 
  3. Kneeling lunges
  4. Kneeling side kicks and circles 
  5. Hip hinge variations
  6. Quadruped opposition
  7. Plank variations (including side planks)
  8. Cat cow
  9. Roll up
  10. Single-leg stretch
  11. Double-leg stretch
  12. Single straight-leg stretch 
  13. Leg lifts 
  14. The saw

What I loved most about Pilates was that if something was too difficult for me, my instructor always offered alternatives that helped me achieve the same goal. As a beginner, it was nice to be affirmed and supported.

I definitely see another Pilates class in my future!

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