Developed by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century, pilates is designed to improve your strength, balance and alignment through controlled, low-impact movements. That defo doesn’t mean that it’s easy – you’ll quickly feel it in your core, in your legs, basically all over your body. Whether you prefer the reformer or mat, these pilates classes will have you feeling stronger, longer and leaner in no time.
Exhale Pilates London
If you want pilates in its truest form, Exhale Pilates London in Chalk Farm is the studio for you. Founder Gaby Noble is all about the classical method here; the classes here are designed to help you find balance in the body, prevent injuries before they occur and achieve a strong, sculpted shape. The studio has all the scary looking equipment, including the reformer, tower, cadillac and wunda chair, meaning you’re able to work your entire body. The classes are always small so you can be sure you’re getting the best instruction and the teachers layer up the exercises so you really can feel your progress.
Ten Health & Fitness
Traditional reformer pilates is at the heart of what Ten Health & Fitness offers but the studio has more dynamic classes to ensure that you’re not getting bored. Whether you need deeper stretches, you want to work up a sweat with some cardio or you’re ready to take your mat practice up a notch with some bodyweight exercises, Ten has sessions for you. And no matter which kind of class you go for, there’s never more than ten people in it.
Chiswick, City of London, Fitzrovia, Hatton Garden, Little Venice, Mayfair, Notting Hill, St James’s
If you prefer to do your pilates on the mat, head to The Refinery. Even though the classes are held on the floor, the capacity is capped at 12 so you still get plenty of trainer attention. There’s a traditional mat-based class but the fun of The Refinery is the twists it offers, so challenge yourself to Mattitude, a dynamic session using hoops, bands and balls, or Pilates and Barre Flow, a mixture of pilates, ballet and yoga set to music.