9 of the Best Online Pilates Classes to Help Get You Moving at Home

Shape reviewed the best online Pilates classes available right now. Here are those you'll definitely want to try at least once.

Woman at home doing pilates
Photo: Olivia Bauso / Unsplash

Pilates is an exercise modality that focuses largely on the muscles that make up your core through a series of mostly floor-based exercises that flow together. "All Pilates exercises focus on precision, alignment, and control," says Robin Long, certified Pilates instructor and founder of Lindywell, an online Pilates studio. Although Pilates is often compared to yoga because it involves breathwork, it is decidedly different in that it lacks the spiritual component and offers different physical benefits. The more specific movements used in Pilates do a better job of strengthening and protecting muscles than the larger movements in yoga, says Pilates instructor Malak Sharaf.

Although Pilates may not seem as meditative as yoga,it does often emphasize the importance of centering yourself mentally as well as physically. Many classes start with breathing exercises and most online services offer specialized relaxation classes. A high-quality, online Pilates program can provide users with both a foundation that they can bring to in-person Pilates classes and a clear path toward enhancing their strength and receiving the full benefits of Pilates.

Here are the top nine online Pilates programs and classes, according to Shape, available now.

Best Online Pilates Classes of 2022

01 of 09

Best Overall: Pilatesology

Pilatesology
Courtesy of Pilatesology

Key Specs

  • Price: $20 per month or $179 per year
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: Desktop, iOS, Android, Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV

Why We Chose It: Pilatesology has over 1,000 workouts designed to fit every need regardless of whether you're a Pilates pro excited to try out their new Reformer or a beginner using a beach towel for a mat.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Instructors have years (if not decades) of experience
  • Reformer, Tower, and Wunda chair workouts available
  • Over 2,000 videos to choose from

Cons

  • No other types of fitness classes are available
  • No focus on mental health
  • Volume of content can be overwhelming to new users

Overview

Pilatesology singular focus on pilates enables the program to have all of the features you might want when honing this particular fitness style. Users can find dozens of videos on the site to fit their needs, regardless of skill or access to equipment.

Alisa Wyatt and her husband Jack Coble founded Pilatesology in 1997 after working with Romana Kryzanowska — the successor to the founder of Pilates, Joseph Pilates. Since then, they've made Pilates more accessible through their affordable service. Pilatesology only costs $20 per month when you sign up for a monthly subscription, and you can find many of their workouts free on YouTube.

The sites' numerous workout series span all skill levels and can cater to those with or without Pilates equipment at home. For example, there's a beginner mat series and an intermediate Magic Circle program. There are even classes designed for folks with Parkinson's disease. All of these workouts can be streamed on any mobile device as well as on your TV.

02 of 09

Best for Beginners: Glo

Glo
Courtesy of Glo

Key Specs

  • Price: $245 a year or $24 per month
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: iOS, desktop, Android, AppleTV, Roku, FireTV, and Chromecast

Why We Chose It: Beginners have access to a 16-class Pilates course just for them on Glo, as well as live classes ranked by intensity and difficulty.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Users can adjust music and instructor voice volumes separately
  • Platform is easy to navigate, especially for newcomers
  • Users can build their own personal library of favorite classes and programs
  • "Practice Together" feature enhances accountability

Cons

  • Not as many Pilates classes as yoga classes
  • No free classes available without signing up for the free trial
  • No Reformer or other Pilates-specific equipment videos available

Overview

Glo is the ideal platform for those looking to try Pilates for the first time. It guides new users gently through an introductory course and clearly separates the content into categories based on ability level.

Glo's introductory Pilates course grounds the user in the practice by explicitly teaching breathwork and form. Since every video is labeled with a difficulty level, it's easy for beginners to incorporate a broad range of workouts in addition to the beginner classes.

In addition to its library of OnDemand classes, Glo offers subscribers multiple live classes to choose from every day, so you will never run out of content. If you need accountability to complete workouts, Glo offers a "Practice Together" feature that lets you and up to seven other users to complete a class together.

Glo's Pilates library is complemented by extensive yoga, mediation, and general fitness collections that enable users to try a variety of workout styles. It's definitely worth the $24 a month price that kicks in after the seven-day free trial.

03 of 09

Best for Intermediate to Advanced: Melissa Wood Health

Melissa Wood Health
Courtesy of Melissa Wood Health

Key Specs

  • Price: $9.99 a month or $99 per year
  • Experience Level: All levels
  • Platforms: iOS, Android, desktop

Why We Chose It: Melissa Wood Health provides users with programs that progressively increase in difficulty, including ones designed for users already far along in their Pilates journey.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Most videos are under 30 minutes
  • Daily schedule provided
  • A healthy mix of meditation, pilates, yoga, and general strength training

Cons

  • Search function doesn't have filters
  • Workouts over 45 minutes are not available
  • No tracking features

Overview

Melissa Wood's program focuses on strength-building and efficient workouts, especially for more seasoned Pilates students. While there are videos targeting beginners, more advanced Pilates students may appreciate the ability to target specific muscles and programs that challenge their fitness level. However, one of the great benefits of Wood's program is her explicit call for self-love since she founded the program after recovering from bulimia.

Subscribers have access to daily workouts as well as to Wood's sculpt programs that aim to enhance muscle tone. In addition to the workout videos, users can explore Wood's video recipes, guided meditations, and lifestyle videos.

There is no reason not to try MWH—even if you forget to cancel after the seven-day trial, you will only be charged $9.99 if you chose the monthly plan.

04 of 09

Best to Improve Core Strength: Lindywell

Lindywell
Courtesy of Lindywell

Key Specs

  • Price: $27 per month, $144 for six months, or $228 for the year
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: Android, iOS, desktop

Why We Chose It: Lindywell delivers workouts that both activate your core and ground you mentally.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Both a daily workout schedule and an extensive list of extra workouts available
  • Instructors give clear verbal instructions
  • Workouts are organized both by duration and muscles being targeted

Cons

  • Expensive when you consider the lack of additional features
  • Workouts aren't ranked by difficulty
  • Recipes only added monthly

Overview

Lindywell's motto is "grace over guilt." Its short daily workouts efficiently target core muscles with the aim of enabling subscribers to make progress without feeling tortured. Lindywell, previously known as The Balanced Life, was originally founded by Robin Long in 2009 in order to empower women to take care of their bodies.

The Lindywell platform provides users with a streamlined experience. When you enter the app, the first thing you see is a daily workout Monday through Friday or a message saying that you have the weekend off. From there, users have the option to explore the library of workouts, all of which are led by one of four certified trainers, or browse the recipes which were written by the site's registered dietitian.

The classes are generally 20-minutes long, although some are over a half hour. Although a few require common Pilates equipment like a core ball, most can be done with your body alone.

If after checking out their free workout videos available on their YouTube channel, you decide to sign up, you can choose between three payment plans. The monthly plan comes with a 14-day free trial. You have to pay upfront for the annual and biannual plans, but you do get a month to ask for a full refund.

05 of 09

Best for Cardio: HOUSEWORK

Housework
Courtesy of Housework

Key Specs

  • Price: $24.99 a month or $299.00 a year
  • Experience Level: Targets intermediate to advanced, but there are beginner classes
  • Platforms: iOS, Android, desktop, Apple TV, Roku, and Chromecast

Why We Chose It: HOUSEWORK is a pilates fusion program that combines strength building with energetic cardio programs set to upbeat house music.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Instructor gives clear instructions while maintaining an energetic vibe
  • "Headliner" workouts feature music from top house artists
  • Includes live Zoom workouts

Cons

  • Workouts aren't ranked by difficulty
  • Typical Pilates breathwork isn't stressed
  • Workouts are all fast-paced which might be hard for beginners to follow

Overview

HOUSEWORK nails the cardio aspect of Pilates by combining the form with a more typical cardio workout to the beat of energizing house music. Users may find that they leave a pool of sweat behind after each workout.

In 2017, Sydney Miller created HOUSEWORK to motivate users to do "musically driven routines that are equal parts challenging and addicting." After a seven-day free trial, users get access to a large library of videos ranging from five minutes to one hour for $25 a month. If you're looking for a relaxing workout, HOUSEWORK is not for you. The videos are all high-energy and fast-paced — perfect for getting you excited daily to hop on your mat. Despite the speed, Miller doesn't ignore the importance of form and strengthening the core muscles.

Potential subscribers should know that although there are beginner classes, this program is targeted toward those who are already familiar with cardio and Pilates and can handle an intense workout.

06 of 09

Best Free: Move With Nicole

Move with Nicole
Courtesy of Move with Nicole

Key Specs

  • Price: Free
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: YouTube

Why We Chose It

The sheer volume of free workouts and helpful modifications and guidance make Move With Nicole's channel a must-try for Pilates enthusiasts on a budget.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Over 150 free workouts available
  • Heavy emphasis on beginners
  • Workout plans available

Cons

  • May not have enough advanced content for some subscribers
  • No educational content
  • Not all workouts are labeled by difficulty

Overview

Move with Nicole is one of the best free Pilates programs out there because of the sheer volume of content available. The videos range in length from full-body, hour-long Pilates classes to a 10-minute inner thigh workout. While there are workouts available that focus on particular body parts, Nicole takes the time in her longer videos to emphasize the importance of breathing and relaxation.

In addition to the Pilates videos, Move with Nicole also includes yoga and barre content. This diversity allows beginners to figure out what subtypes of workouts they enjoy without financially investing in a class.

07 of 09

Best for Seniors: Pilates Anytime

Pilates Anytime
Courtesy of Pilates Anytime

Key Specs

  • Price: $22 a month or $240 per year
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: iOS, Android, desktop, Chromecast, Roku, and Apple TV

Why We Chose It: Not only does Pilates Anytime emphasize the gentleness of most of their workouts, but it also has classes exclusively for seniors, including those that are osteoporosis-safe.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • A live transcript accompanies each class
  • Users can leave notes that they can review later
  • Modifications are always available

Cons

  • No other types of workouts
  • None of the classes feature music, not even the dance ones
  • There are many videos, but no clear path for advancement

Overview

With over 70 videos dedicated to seniors, Pilates Anytime provides older users with enough content to satisfy every need. It even has a series on "active aging" that emphasizes the importance of loving being in your body as you age. However, Pilates Anytime isn't just for older users; it also has a beginner series for users of any age as well as advanced classes.

Pilates Anytime was founded in 2010 and now has over 3,000 videos. With over 200 instructors to choose from, users will no doubt find one that suits their style. The videos are available on a wide range of platforms including Roku and Apple TV.

Furthermore, the site includes educational videos such as ones advising users on how to choose a Reformer and a discussion about diversity in Pilates. There are also some unique features such as the ability to take notes on videos and a transcript that accompanies each video.

Pilates Anytime isn't for everyone. If you like a step-by-step path to success, it probably won't work well for you because there aren't any programs to follow. And although there are many workout videos, all of them are Pilates-based, so you may find yourself looking elsewhere if you want to expand your workout regime.

After a 15-day free trial, users will be charged $22 per month, which is reasonable considering how much content is available.

08 of 09

Best for Variety of Classes Offered: Obé Fitness

Obe Fitness
Courtesy of Obe Fitness

Key Specs

  • Price: $27 monthly, $65 quarterly, $199 annually
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: Desktop, iOS, Android, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, and FireTV

Why We Chose It: Obé Fitness has one of the broadest ranges of workout videos available. If you get bored with the nearly 600 Pilates videos, you can switch to anything, from boxing to trampoline workouts.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Many classes don't require equipment
  • Classes are high energy, colorful, and accompanied by music
  • Live classes available and replayable

Cons

  • No clear sequence to follow for beginner Pilates
  • Some classes are labeled "open level," making their difficulty unclear
  • No educational content to get you started

Overview

Obé Fitness excels at variety. Its Pilates classes vary considerably in length, equipment used, and focus. Although there are no Reformer or Tower classes, users have the option to include weights, bands, and even sliders to keep things interesting. And the variety doesn't end at Pilates. Obé aims to be an all-in-one fitness platform with classes for every workout style and even nutrition education videos.

Obé is built to make working out the highlight of your day. Users will immediately be engaged by the colorful style and catchy music which keeps workouts exciting. The instructors are vibrantly enthusiastic about whatever they are teaching.

There are no free classes available, but there is a week-long free trial that gives users unlimited access to content before a fee is charged. A monthly payment plan is $27 a month, whereas a quarterly subscription is only $65 for three months, and it's $199 a year if you pay annually.

09 of 09

Best for Busy Schedules: Trifecta Pilates

Trifecta Pilates
Courtesy of Trifecta Pilates

Key Specs

  • Price: Free
  • Experience Level: All
  • Platforms: YouTube Channel

Why We Chose It: Trifecta Pilates features 28 videos that are under 10 minutes long and another 112 that are under 20 minutes long—perfect for users with hectic schedules.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Instructor takes a trauma-informed approach
  • There are playlists specifically for beginners to follow
  • Over 300 free videos available

Cons

  • Videos can feel a bit repetitive
  • Few videos for advanced Pilates students
  • No music on any videos

Overview

Trifecta Pilates is the perfect option for those days when you have to squeeze a workout in between half a dozen other activities. Trifecta founder Beth Sandlin manages to ramp up users' heart rates and tone their muscles in under 10 minutes with her shortest videos, including her "5 Minute Pilates Ab Workout, Pilates Ab Workout with No Equipment" video. Furthermore, her channel features educational videos on everything from the difference between yoga and pilates to how Sandlin got back into working out after recovering from cancer.

Trifecta also features a series of videos meant for people who are contemplating becoming Pilates teachers themselves. It emphasizes her trauma-informed approach which takes into consideration symptoms like dissociation (the feeling that either nothing is real or that you are floating outside your body) while teaching Pilates.

Trifecta Pilates is the ideal YouTube channel for those who want an easily digestible introduction to the world world of Pilates.

Final Verdict

Pilatesology is our top choice on this list due to its ability to serve almost every need at every stage of your Pilates journey. Not only does it have a clear path for beginners, but it also has classes for those recovering from injury, as well as those for more advanced students. With its top-notch instructors, endless streaming options, and smooth interface, there's no reason not to give it a try considering the videos available on YouTube and free trial for the entire site.

While Pilatesology is the best overall company, HOUSEWORK and Obé might be more your style if you are looking for an upbeat practice.

Compare the Best Online Pilates Classes

Company Pricing Experience Level Platforms Free Trial
Pilatesology
Best Overall
$20/month or $179/year All Desktop, iOS, Android, Roku, Chromecast, Apple TV Yes
Glo
Best for Beginners
$245/year or $24/month All iOS, desktop, Android, AppleTV, Roku, FireTV, and Chromecast Yes
Melissa Wood Health (MWH)
Best for Intermediate to Advanced
$9.99/month or $99/year All iOS, Android, desktop Yes
Lindywell
Best to Improve Core Strength
$27/month, $144/6 months, or $228/year All iOS, Android, desktop Yes
HOUSEWORK
Best for Cardio
$24.99/month or $299/year Targeted towards intermediate to advanced, but there are beginner classes iOS, Android, desktop, Apple TV, Roku, and Chromecast Yes
Move With Nicole
Best for Free
Free All YouTube N/A
Pilates Anytime
Best for Seniors
$22/month or $240/year All iOS, Android, desktop, Chromecast, Roku, and Apple TV Yes

Guide for Choosing the Best Online Pilates Classes

How Do I Choose the Best Online Pilates Classes for Me?

Cost, difficulty level, and instructor expertise can all influence whether the program is right for you or not. Make use of free trials and YouTube videos to get a better sense of a particular program and take into account your current and future needs.

Comparing Online Pilates Classes

When comparing online Pilates classes, consider the various offerings of each website. While many have similar workouts, each may include more targeted features:

  • Pricing: Paid subscriptions can range from around $10 to $30. If you're on a budget, check out YouTube to see if you enjoy Pilates before subscribing.
  • Platforms: While almost all sites have desktop and mobile options, some also include ways to watch via your TV.
  • Free trial: Free trials range from seven to 15 days. Set a reminder to decide whether or not to subscribe to the site before it automatically charges you.
  • Experience level: Although many sites catered to all levels, some do so to varying degrees. Have a good sense of your fitness level and the site's target audience before subscribing.
  • Likability of instructors: If you don't like the instructor, you won't be motivated to complete the workouts, so make sure you enjoy the teacher's style before choosing a site.
  • Number of classes available: Services differ in both the number and range of classes they have available. When choosing a program, think through both your current needs and what you may want in the future.
  • Equipment required: Pilates classes sometimes include expensive equipment, such as Reformers that can cost thousands of dollars. If you're not ready to make that investment, choose classes that only require a mat or no props at all.
  • Instructor's attitude: Due to Pilates' focus on core fitness, online programs can sometimes target users' insecurities about their bodies. Aim to find instructors who motivate you without triggering negative thoughts about your self-image.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Online Pilates Classes Worth It?

Online Pilates classes can help you build a stronger core and increase your physical flexibility, all from your home. Most programs offer introductory classes and don't require much if any, equipment. While Pilates doesn't focus on the spiritual aspect as yoga does, it does include breathwork and the potential for relaxation. If you are looking for a new way to work out from your living room, Pilates might be worth a shot.

Should I Check With a Doctor Before Doing Pilates?

Always check with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine, even one considered low impact, such as Pilates. This is especially true for pregnant people whose heart rates don't respond to exercise in a typical manner.

How Much Do Online Pilates Classes Cost?

There are many free Pilates classes on YouTube (including a couple on this list). Most subscription-based platforms cost between $10 and $30 per month.

Are Online Pilates Classes Effective?

They can be very effective, but it depends on what you're hoping to achieve. Pilates classes taught by certified instructors can increase upper body strength. A study conducted on people between the ages of 25 and 65 showed that while Pilates has little to no impact on posture, it improves the flexibility and strength of your upper body. Other research indicates that Pilates can help older people with balance.

It is important to note, however, that these studies didn't have a control group, so their results should be taken with a grain of salt. There is also research that found Pilates can have a positive impact on mental health: A 2018 meta-analysis concluded Pilates can even reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Are Online Pilates Classes Beginner-Friendly?

Most online Pilates classes we researched had options for beginners and some even had introductory videos to teach newcomers the required terminology. These videos tend to be slower-paced and involve less complex movements. While not all programs will work for beginners, there are many that can fit the needs of newcomers.

Methodology

After researching 18 different Pilates programs, we chose our top picks by evaluating instructor qualifications, the usability of the site, and class options. We aimed to find programs that would serve a broad range of users while also not shying away from those that were more specialized. Additionally, we steered clear of programs that had negative body image messages. Our top choices are ones that enable skill development while offering an enjoyable experience for the user.

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