Full-Body Pilates Ring Exercises for Beginners - 10 Effective Pilates Ring Exercises

Full-Body Pilates Ring Exercises for Beginners - 10 Effective Pilates Ring Exercises

Pilates is a form of exercise that emphasizes the balanced development of the body through core strength, flexibility, and awareness to support efficient, graceful movement. One of the versatile tools that enhance a Pilates workout is the Pilates ring, also known as a magic circle. A Pilates ring exercises key muscle groups, providing gentle to moderate resistance in a workout. This tool is perfect for beginners looking to tone, strengthen, and improve their flexibility. Here, we delve into 10 foundational Pilates ring exercises for beginners, offering a comprehensive guide to incorporating this effective tool into your fitness routine.

The Magic Circle: Understanding Your Pilates Ring

The Pilates ring is a lightweight, circular tool made from flexible metal or rubber, about 13 inches in diameter, with pads on either side. It provides resistance, helping to engage and activate various muscle groups more effectively. The Pilates ring exercises we're about to explore will engage your core, tone your limbs, and improve your posture and flexibility. While it might seem simple, the Pilates ring is incredibly versatile, suitable for a wide range of exercises targeting the upper body, lower body, and core. 

Deluxe Pilates Ring in purple.

Benefits of Pilates Ring Exercises

Pilates ring exercises offer a plethora of benefits, including:

  • Enhanced Muscle Tone: The resistance provided by the ring helps in toning muscles that are often hard to target.
  • Improved Core Strength: Many exercises focus on the abdominal muscles, enhancing core stability and strength.
  • Increased Flexibility: Regular use of the Pilates ring can lead to improved flexibility and range of motion.
  • Better Posture: By strengthening the back and core muscles, these exercises contribute to better posture.
  • Mind-Body Connection: Pilates encourages mindfulness and concentration, fostering a stronger mind-body connection.

10 Easy Pilates Ring Exercises: A Path to Full-Body Wellness

Integrating the Pilates ring into your workout regimen can significantly enhance the effectiveness of Pilates exercises by challenging your muscles in new ways. Here are some foundational Pilates ring exercises to get you started on your journey. Remember, the key is to perform each movement with intention and focus, ensuring alignment and breathing are in sync.

Woman using a Pilates ring to perform exercises

1. Pelvic Curls

Objective: Warm up the spine and engage the core.

How to Do It: Lie on your back with knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and the Pilates ring between your thighs. Inhale to prepare, then exhale as you press your lower back into the floor, curling your pelvis and spine off the mat into a bridge position. Squeeze the ring gently as you lift. Inhale at the top, then exhale as you slowly roll down to the starting position. Repeat 8-10 times.

2. Supine Leg Presses

Objective: Strengthen the inner thighs and stabilize the pelvis.

How to Do It: Lie on your back, legs extended towards the ceiling with the Pilates ring placed between your ankles. Press into the ring with moderate intensity while engaging your core to keep your lower back pressed into the mat. Release gently and repeat. Perform 10-15 presses.

3. Standing Chest Squeeze

Objective: Tone the chest, arms, and shoulders.

How to Do It: Stand with feet hip-width apart, holding the Pilates ring in front of you at chest height, hands pressing into the sides of the ring. Squeeze the ring by bringing your hands closer together, then release with control. Keep your shoulders down and chest open. Repeat 10-15 times.

4. Seated Twist

Objective: Strengthen the obliques and improve spinal rotation.

How to Do It: Sit with legs crossed or extended in front of you, holding the Pilates ring with both hands in front of your chest. Keep your spine long as you twist to one side, pressing the ring slightly to engage your core and arm muscles. Return to center and repeat on the other side. Complete 8-10 twists per side.

5. The Rowing Exercise

Objective: Strengthen the upper back, shoulders, and arms.

How to Do It: Sit on the floor with legs extended, feet flexed, and the Pilates ring in your hands. Hinge slightly forward from your hips, keeping your back straight. Pull the ring towards your chest, squeezing the shoulder blades together, then extend your arms back out. Perform 10-15 rows.

6. Squats with Ring

Objective: Tone the glutes, thighs, and calves.

How to Do It: Stand with feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, holding the Pilates ring between your hands at chest height. Lower into a squat while pressing the ring slightly to engage your arms. Keep your weight in your heels and your back straight. Return to standing and repeat. Aim for 10-15 squats.

7. The Hundred with a Twist

Objective: Engage the core, enhance endurance, and improve breathing technique.

How to Do It: Lie on your back with knees bent into a tabletop position and the Pilates ring between your hands, extended towards the ceiling. Lift your head and shoulders off the mat, extending your arms and legs while pumping your arms up and down. Inhale for five pumps and exhale for five, squeezing the ring slightly with each pump. Complete 10 sets of inhales and exhales.

8. The Mermaid Stretch

Objective: Stretch the side body and improve flexibility.

How to Do It: Sit with legs folded to one side, holding the Pilates ring in one hand. Place the ring on the floor beside you, and press down into it as you reach your other arm over your head, stretching the side of your body. Hold for a few breaths, then switch sides. Repeat 2-3 times per side.

9. Arm Circles

Objective: Increase shoulder mobility and strength.

How to Do It: Stand or sit with a tall spine, holding the Pilates ring with both hands in front of you at shoulder height. Arms should be extended but not locked. Slowly start to move the ring in small circles, ensuring the movement comes from the shoulders. Keep your core engaged and your spine neutral. Do 10 circles in one direction, then switch to 10 circles in the opposite direction. This exercise not only strengthens the shoulders but also engages the core and improves posture.

10. Bridge with Ring Adduction

Objective: Strengthen the glutes, hamstrings, and inner thighs.

How to Do It: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground, hip-width apart. Place the Pilates ring between your knees. Press your arms and palms into the mat beside you for support. Inhale to prepare, then exhale as you lift your hips towards the ceiling into a bridge position. As you lift, squeeze the Pilates ring with your knees to activate the inner thighs. Hold the squeeze and the bridge position for a few seconds, then slowly lower your hips back to the mat. Repeat 10-15 times.

Incorporating Pilates Ring Exercises into Your Routine

To reap the maximum benefits, aim to incorporate these Pilates ring exercises into your routine 2-3 times a week. Each session should begin with a warm-up and conclude with a cool-down to prevent injuries and promote flexibility.

Shop Pilates Rings at Aeromat

Incorporating Pilates ring exercises into your routine is an excellent way for beginners to enhance their Pilates practice, offering a unique blend of resistance training with the core principles of Pilates. These exercises target multiple muscle groups, improve flexibility, and build strength in a balanced, holistic manner. Remember, the key to Pilates is precision and control, not the quantity of repetitions. Focus on maintaining proper form and engaging the correct muscles throughout each exercise.

Here at Aeromat, we pride ourselves on providing premium fitness equipment and accessories tailored for yoga and Pilates enthusiasts. Understanding the pivotal role that the right tools play in enhancing your workout experience, we meticulously curate our collection to ensure it meets the highest standards of durability, comfort, and performance. 

For those in pursuit of the perfect Pilates ring to complement their exercises, look no further. Our extensive collection of workout equipment is designed to cater to your every need, ensuring that you have the best possible support on your journey towards a stronger, more flexible, and balanced self. We invite you to browse our selection at Aeromat and encourage you to contact us with any questions or concerns. Let us be a part of your fitness journey, providing you with the equipment that leads you to achieve your goals with confidence and ease.

A stack of black Pilates rings ready to be used for exercises.


How often should I incorporate Pilates ring exercises into my routine?

Incorporating Pilates ring exercises 2-3 times a week can significantly improve strength, flexibility, and posture. It's important to allow a day of rest between sessions to let your muscles recover.

Can beginners use the Pilates ring, or is it only for advanced users?

Absolutely, beginners can use the Pilates ring! It's a versatile tool that can be adjusted to different levels of intensity, making it suitable for both beginners and advanced practitioners.

How do I choose the right Pilates ring for me?

Choose a Pilates ring based on its resistance level, which should be challenging yet manageable for your strength level. Additionally, consider the ring's diameter for a comfortable fit and grip type for ease of use.

How long does it take to see results from Pilates ring exercises?

Results vary depending on consistency, effort, and individual fitness levels, but many people start to notice improvements in strength, flexibility, and posture within a few weeks of regular practice.

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