Beginner’s Guide to Pilates | Start with this 10-Minute Online Class


You’ve most likely heard of Pilates. Perhaps, you’ve wondered what it’s all about? Or maybe you’re looking for a gentle introduction to this renowned exercise form, keep reading as we’ve created the perfect beginner’s guide to Pilates. 

Let’s dive into the wonderful world of Pilates! Plus, we want to help you jumpstart your journey with a very doable 10-minute routine. The 10-minute online class is below!

A Brief Introduction to Pilates 

Joseph Pilates created this mind-body exercise back in the early 20th century. He called it ‘Contrology’ but as it gained popularity, his students began referring to it as ‘Pilates’. It always was a harmonious blend of strength, flexibility and mindfulness. Think of it as a regime that connects and integrates your physical health with mental clarity. 

The Pilates Principles

Before diving into your routine, let’s get to know the Pilates foundational principles. There are 6 Pilates principles. 

  • Concentration: Be present, this habit is fantastic for reducing stress. It’s like every move becomes a moving meditation.
  • Control: It’s not about speed; it’s about deliberate, purposeful motion.
  • Centre: Your core is your anchor. Every move comes from here. 
  • Flow: Each move seamlessly transitions into the next.
  • Precision: It’s quality over quantity. A focus on your form is important, for safety and progress!
  • Breath: Deep, rhythmic breathing fuels each exercise. With most movements the hardest part fo the move coincides with the exhale. 

Why is the Pilates Workout so Good? 

Now that you’ve read a very brief introduction to Pilates (if you want to know more, head on over here, where we discuss the difference between Yoga and Pilates and talk more about history), let’s talk about the benefits you can experience from Pilates.


Here’s a picture of me, Emma, your MerryBody Pilates instructor! Also, if this move makes you nervous, don’t worry! There are many modifications that will offer you an amazing workout (I always offer modifications in our classes). 

Better Posture

In our digital age, slouching over screens has become second nature. But, with Pilates, you’ll learn to stand taller, aligning your spine and shoulders. This will significantly reduce back-related discomforts and strains and will help build your inner confidence. 

Increase Flexibility

Pilates introduces you to a series of stretches and exercises that enhance your natural flexibility. As you progress, you’ll notice a more graceful, fluid range of motion in your day-to-day activities. Flexibility along with strength, work together to boost mobility. This is especially important as we age. 

Core Powerhouse

The core isn’t just about those “six-pack abs.” It’s the body’s central foundation, supporting every movement and activity. With Pilates, you’ll engage muscles you didn’t even know existed. The result? A strong, resilient midsection that powers you through daily tasks with ease.

Mind Boost

You could say Pilates is both fitness for the body and for the mind. By focusing on breath, alignment and precision, you naturally elevate your concentration levels. Plus, you’ll connect breathing with movement, which helps you be more present and release stress. If you want to start a meditation practice but can’t imagine sitting still for 2 minutes, Pilates could be the perfect option.

For Everyone

Sure, some Pilates studios may have that elitest feel, but with our MerryBody classes, you will feel completely able to try out a class, and you will feel welcomed and accepted. Whether you’re a teenager, an older person, a seasoned athlete, or someone who’s never stepped foot in a gym, Pilates offers modifications and progressions to fit every body type and fitness level. It’s a journey that respects and celebrates your unique pace. 

Here’s a picture of us with our Mum. She does our Yoga and Pilates classes every day! 


Are you ready to start? Or are you feeling a little nervous? Don’t worry, we’ve got tips for you!

Tips for Starting Your Pilates Journey

We get it, starting anything new can be quite overwhelming. Especially if you haven’t worked out in a while or if the idea of a Studio or gym makes you feel a little ill. We have tips for you, and we have a feeling you’ll actually even feel excited about starting your new Pilates routine! 

Start Slow and Listen to Your Body

Remember, it’s perfectly fine to start small, a 10-minute Pilates class can and will make a positive impact on your body and mind. Focus on mastering the basic movements before advancing. If something feels uncomfortable, it’s okay to pause, modify or skip that particular exercise. The beauty of Pilates is its adaptability to every individual’s needs.

Join Online Classes with MerryBody

Feeling unsure about heading to a physical studio? No worries. Online classes, like MerryBody, provide guided routines you can follow from the comfort of your own home. Plus, one of the core values of MerryBody is ACCEPTANCE so you can expect warm and welcoming vibes. We don’t obsess over external transformation. We also share modifications for each exercise. Plus, the online nature of these classes gives you the ability to pause, rewind and practice at your own pace.

Set Small Goals

Instead of overwhelming yourself with long sessions or daily commitments right away, aim for shorter, more achievable goals. It could be as simple as practising a specific exercise for a week or committing to a 10-minute session every other day. The little steps get you moving forward towards the bigger picture. If you want more inspiration on goal setting for your workout, head on over here. 

Invest in the Basics

While Pilates requires minimal equipment, investing in a good-quality, non-slip mat can make your practice more comfortable. There are other pieces of equipment you can use like resistance bands or Pilates rings, but they are not necessary. So just start with a basic mat and comfortable attire. The best part about workout out at home is you can really wear what you want, our MerryBody members often wake up and do Pilates in their PJs! 

Be Kind to Yourself

If it’s been a while since you’ve worked out, it’s natural to feel discomfort. Understand that progress in Pilates, as in life, is not always in one straight line. Some days will feel amazing, while others might be challenging.

Celebrate your effort, not just the results. Every time you show up on that mat, you are taking a step towards a healthier, happier you.

Alright, now we think it’s time for you to try out that 10-minute Pilates class! 

We’ve chosen to share this 10 minute lower ab-focused MerryBody class, you can also find it inside our MerryBody App (along with hundreds and hundreds of other classes!). 

Here’s another 10 minute short and effective Pilates class to try! Side body and oysters to work and strengthen your glutes and thighs! 


If you love the classes and want more, sign up for a 2 week free trial of MerryBody over here.   You’ll have access to hundreds of Pilates, Yoga and Meditation classes. You’ll also have access to us for questions, motivational and support! We can not wait to welcome you into the community! 

Always merrymaking,
Emma + Carla


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