I know Pilates isn’t for everyone, but let’s be honest: What other workout makes you want to cry without weights, resistance bands, or makeshift wine weights? The answer is NO OTHER WORKOUT.
Also worth noting: They're free (TY, YouTube!) and will leave you feeling strong, bendy, and Kate Middleton-level poised.
Assuming you already got your Tiger King fix in, attempted to box dye your hair once, maybe twice, and scheduled a happy hour with your pet succulent, checking out these Pilates YouTube videos probably isn't such a bad idea on an otherwise boring Tuesday night.
Whether you’re new to Pilates and just want something to do, or you’re a total pro who lives and breathes reformers, these YouTube vids will def deliver.
1. If you want to feel zen in the ~mountains~
Okay, so maybe you’re stuck inside right now (Womp!), but you can pretend like you’re getting some fresh air while doing Boho Beautiful’s core Pilates workout. Her video just happens to be set in the dreamiest mountainous landscape. (How do I make this my Zoom background?)
The workout is only 15-minutes total, but afterward you won’t giggle at any TikTok vids without feeling a ping in your stomach.
2. If you want a total body workout
25 minutes toning my abs, butt, and arms sounds like time well spent. And with this vid, you’ll do just that. Oh, and you can hop onto a Zoom meeting right after without looking like you just worked out too. No serious sweating here, folks.
3. If your back needs help, like, now
Bingeing all of the things got your lower back feeling some type of way? This EFIT 30 video from Katie gotchu. You're in for 15 minutes of core work and Katie's insanely soothing voice.
4. If you actually want to break a sweat
This 35-minute workout requires zero equipment and includes both a warm-up and post-workout stretch. Don’t let the basic white backdrop fool you. Kelli’s sequence of lower-body moves (which includes clamshells and traveling hip bridges) doesn’t have much rest time, so you’re sure to get drippy.
5. If you want core AND cardio
Even the warm-up in this PopSugar Fitness video is spicy. Lisa Corsello, Pilates guru and founder of San Francisco’s Burn Pilates studio, incorporates three- to five-pound dumbbells and cardio moves like mountain-climbers to turn up the burn. Don’t worry though, Corsello demos easier modifications for every single move. Feel free to roll over and take a nap on your mat when you’re done.
6. If you have 20 minutes—and that’s it
Master trainer Deanna Dorman’s 20-minute Pilates flow (aka a super-graceful, fluid sequence of moves) builds strength all over with exercises like single-leg hip bridges, which are no joke, and plenty of stretching. I’m not sure what I love more, the background EDM elevator music or that cute yoga mat. Add. To. Cart.
7. If you’re not here to make friends
If you’ve taken your share of Pilates mat classes but just don’t feel like leaving the house today, move through this advanced hour-long class with Beth Sandlin, founder of Trifecta Pilates, a site with free Pilates workouts. The scene may look a smidge like my parents’ den, but the werkout is legit. After a long, stretchy warm-up, you’ll crank out classic Pilates moves, like the Roll Over, Corkscrew, and Teasers. If those sound like cocktails to you, start with a beginner class before tackling this challenge.
8. If you have some bb dumbbells lying around
With the help of some lil weights (Sydney uses three-pounders), this 40-minute workout promises to leave your arms, core, and legs en feugo. The weighted X-pulses and weighted bird-dog pulses are particularly brutal. Trust, those three-pound dumbbells will feel stupid heavy by the end of this one.
9. If you want to pretend you’re on vacation
Once you get past the cheesy drone shots of trainers casually doing yoga moves on the beach and thinking deep thoughts on some rocky cliffs, you’ll get to an actually awesome workout. Sandwiched between a 5-minute cardio warm-up (jumping jacks included) and 10-minute yoga cool-down, this 30-minute Pilates workout hits your core hard—and seriously tested my balance. (Good luck with those reverse table-top alternating crunches...) Also, the instructor Lindsay is just really happy to be here in her backwards hat. Constant words of encouragement appreciated, girl.
10. If you just want to move around a little
When you’re feeling beat but still want to do something with your body today (ideally without getting up off the floor), this 10ish-minute Pilates flow requires just enough effort to wake up. You might even feel a little bit better while catching up on Bachelor in Paradise the rest of the day.
11. If you want to destroy your abs
Deanna of the Live Fit Girls blog is back with ANOTHER bomb-ass mat. This quick but advanced sweat sesh kicks it off with Roll-Ups, and your abs will be shaking within 60 seconds. This one is fast, dirty, and oh-so satisfying.
12. If you’re not sure what Pilates is
Because 2011 is somehow a million years ago, this one is an oldie but goodie. During the 30-minute beginner workout from YouTube Pilates queen Cassey Ho of Blogilates, you’ll focus on the fundamentals of Pilates, like breathing, posture, and form. Consider it Pilates 101.
13. If you wanna get that butt
Who knew a squishy mini ball (a Pilates staple used to add extra resistance to moves) could be such a game changer! My thighs are sore just watching the first few minutes of mini-ball hip thrusts and glute kick-backs. Be prepared for lots of booty-squeezing and the longest 15 minutes of your life. Don’t @ me if you can’t walk tomorrow.
14. If you sit All. Damn. Day.
This Pilates routine might literally SAVE you. The short flow focuses on building core strength with moves like hollow-holds and planks to get your posture on point AND stretching hip muscles that get tight from sitting so much. Sarah, creator of Kalm Pilates’ online Pilates courses, recommends trying it daily for six weeks. And, TBH, Sarah’s soothing voice might be the only reason I actually do that.
15. If you don’t mind working out like your mom
You might roll your eyes when you first start this very retro—like 2005, retro—video. But Denise Austin’s Pilates workout and those yellow yoga pants are coming for your abs with side planks, Roll-Ups, and superman exercises. And, hey, the workout is just 10 minutes. Denise, wanna grab a marg after this?
16. If you like yoga AND pilates
Okay, this one is basically a mini yoga sesh with a little extra Pilates oomph. The 14-minute session blends classic yoga poses like Warrior Two with slow (read: painful) moves like bicycle crunches. It’ll leave you feeling flexible and strong as hell.
17. If you’re freaked out but also intrigued by Pilates reformers
This 15-minute workout uses resistance bands to recreate Pilates moves you might do on a Reformer, a bed frame–like Pilates machine that adds resistance to basic moves. FYI: The resisted kick-backs are especially killer. Another major perk of band werk? More arm exercise options, like reverse fly pulses. Your limbs will be calling in sick tomorrow.
18. If your gym has a stability ball and you don’t know what to do with it
You’ll have to work extra hard to not to fall over during this 30-minute workout, which means everything from your abs to your legs will be extra sore. (YAY!) Side note: Kristi, I want those leggings!
19. If You had a baby like two months ago
This gentle postpartum flow is designed for people who have recently given birth and wanna get back into exercising, release tension in their back and shoulders (hi, breastfeeding), and start working on that core strength. With chill but challenging moves like lying core twists and bridges, you’ll be feeling good after this 14-minutes sesh.
20. If you love puppies
Peeping Jessica Smith’s mushy lil Frenchie almost (almost!) made me forget how difficult these standing ab moves, like standing oblique crunches, are. From now on, I will only do home workouts if a puppy is involved. Serious.
21. If you don’t need to use your legs tomorrow
Cassey, I just can’t stay away. All you need for this one is your mat, a Pilates ring, and, well, a lot of mental strength. That’s because you’ll be using inner-thigh muscles you didn’t know you had to squeeze that torture device. This burner might only be 14-minutes long, but it makes getting out of a chair the next day basically impossible.
22. If you need a day off from running
Take off your sneakers! This 20-minute Pilates workout is fab for strengthening your legs, butt, and core, or, you know, important muscles for running (and booty selfies). Just be mentally prepared for SO many slow squats. You got this, dude.
23. If you need backyard decor inspo
Did I need another Pilates workout video that has a dog in it? Yes, yes, I did. Also, I’d like to address this backyard setup because it is boho-living #Goals. Anywho, this 15-minute Pilates-yoga fusion workout combines yoga poses and core-strengthening exercises, like the V-sit with arm extensions, which makes me feel pretty freaking graceful. I’ll take it!