You Can Do This At-Home Pilates Workout While Social Distancing

Coronavirus 2020

About Coronavirus 2020

Washingtonian is keeping you up to date on the coronavirus around DC.

Looking to get in a workout while social distancing? We asked DC personal trainer and nutrition coach Corey Phelps to share an at-home pilates workout that doesn’t require any equipment.

The workout also doesn’t require much space, either, so you can still lengthen and tone from the comfort of your living room, studio apartment, porch, basement—wherever.

Below, find Phelps’s at-home workout. Go through the whole set for a quick sweat, or repeat it two-to-three times for a longer session.

Roll Up

  1. Lie face-up with your arms extended behind your head.
  2. Engage your core, lift your head, and raise your arms toward the ceiling to roll up smoothly.
  3. Reach forward (like you’re trying to grab your toes) while drawing your waist back. This creates length along your spine and helps you stay connected to your core.
  4. Slowly roll back down and repeat.

Repeat for 10-to-15 repetitions.  

The Hundred

  1. Lie face-up with your arms at your sides.
  2. Curl your head, neck, and shoulders up and extend your legs out straight.
  3. Find the sweet spot where your abs stay engaged but your lower back is not lifting or arching off the floor.
  4. Begin pumping your arms up and down, breathing in for five counts and exhaling for five counts.

Repeat for 10 full breath counts. 

Double-Leg Stretch

  1. Lie face-up. Raise your shoulders off the ground slightly and engage your abs to support your lower back.
  2. Extend your arms by your ears and raise your legs to a 45-degree angle from the floor.
  3. Circle your arms around and hug your knees to your chest.

Repeat for 10-to-15 repetitions.

Single-Leg Stretch

  1. Lie face-up.
  2. Bring both of your knees in toward your chest, place your hands on your shins, and curl your head up off the floor.
  3. Extend one leg out at a time, alternating sides.
  4. Keep your lower back on the floor and your core engaged throughout.

Repeat for 10-to-15 repetitions.


  1. Lie face-up and bring both of your knees in toward your chest.
  2. Place your hands on the back of your head, keeping your elbows wide.
  3. Curl your head up.
  4. Bring your left shoulder toward your right knee as you extend your left leg.
  5. Then bring your right shoulder toward your left knee as you extend your right leg.
  6. Continue alternating sides.

Repeat for 10-to-15 repetitions.

Dynamic Plank Series

  1. Walk your hands out to a plank pose.
  2. Engage your abs to draw your right knee into your chest.
  3. Extend your right leg back, pointing your toes to the ceiling and engaging your glutes and hamstrings.
  4. Repeat for five repetitions.
  5. Bring your right knee towards your left shoulder in the same manner.
  6. Repeat for five repetitions.
  7. Bring your right knee towards your right shoulder in the same manner.
  8. Repeat the entire series on the left leg.


  1. Lie facedown.
  2. Draw your shoulder blades down your back and place your hands underneath your shoulders.
  3. Engage your core and slightly lift your head.
  4. Raise your chest and extend your arms forward.
  5. Lift your legs one inch above the mat. Bend your elbows so that your arms form a W shape.
  6. Hold this pose and then lower yourself down to the mat.

Repeat for 10-to-15 repetitions. 

Thigh Stretch

  1. Bring your knees and the tops of your feet to the floor with your knees directly under hips and your feet touching.
  2. Hinge your upper body back about 45 degrees while engaging your abs, glutes, and feet.
  3. Maintain a straight line from head to knees.
  4. Return to the starting position and repeat.

Repeat for 10-to-15 repetitions. 

Kneeling Side-Kick

  1. While kneeling, lower your left hand to the ground and extend your right leg out, holding your right hand behind your head.
  2. Lift your right leg to hip height, then lower for 10-to-15 repetitions.
  3. Hold your right leg at hip height and rotate your leg in small circles for 10-to-15 repetitions in each direction.
  4. Repeat the entire series on your left leg.

Side-Line Leg Series

  1. Lying on your left side, bring your legs slightly in front of your hips to create a kickstand.
  2. Lift your right leg to hip height and kick it forward and back, maintaining your upper body stability and pointing your toes.
  3. Repeat this for 10 repetitions.
  4. Next, pause at hip height, point your foot, and rotate it in small circles (about the size of a tennis ball). Circle 10-to-15 times in each direction.
  5. Repeat the entire series on your right side using your left leg.

Mimi Montgomery Washingtonian
Home & Features Editor

Mimi Montgomery joined Washingtonian in 2018. She’s written for The Washington Post, Garden & Gun, Outside Magazine, Washington City Paper, DCist, and PoPVille. Originally from North Carolina, she now lives in Del Ray.