Would you like to try Pilates but aren’t sure whether you can afford it? Or do you want to know how much you need to budget for taking up this exercise regime? It might be cheaper than you think although there is no upper limit to what you can spend on this fitness program. So how much does Pilates cost on average?
The high number of people currently practicing Pilates clearly shows that it doesn’t only appeal to a select group of people. In fact, there are over 12 million Pilates practitioners today, of which over 75% are female, with the number of males doing Pilates on the rise. Also, there is a fairly even spread across the various age groups. The same is true for income groups, with over 30% of Pilates practitioners having an annual income of over $75,000.
One reason for this even spread is the fact that it is pretty much up to you how much you spend on Pilates as an exercise regime. If you are on a low budget, there are very affordable ways of practicing Pilates, and if you are more affluent, you can spend more on accessories and on equipment. However, one area where you shouldn’t compromise is initial tuition.
What is the cost of Pilates classes?
When you try Pilates for the first time, it is very advisable to book a beginner’s class to learn the basics. Only this way can you ensure that you are doing your exercises correctly to get the maximum benefit out of them. In addition, you want to avoid hurting your back, neck, shoulders or other parts of your body as a result of performing exercises incorrectly.
There are various types of classes available, such as mat work classes, reformer classes, Barre classes etc. which are either taught in groups or in one-to-one classes. Most people start off in a mat work group class. But if you have specific needs, one-to-one tuition might be more suitable. Group classes are generally considerably cheaper than private tuition, however, the cost of a class does not necessarily reflect the quality of the tuition.
The cost of mat work classes starts at £6 (or $10 in the US) but can be as much as £20 ($30 in the US) depending on venue and instructor, whilst reformer classes start at £8 ($22 in the US) and can be as much as £30 ($100 in the US) per session. Private tuition can be anything from £25 ($50 in the US). The actual cost generally depends on the location/venue and/or on the qualification and experience of the instructor.
How much are online Pilates classes?
Online Pilates classes are a good alternative to studio classes. You can do them at home or wherever you like, at any time of the day or night and as often or as long as you like. There is a wide choice of classes available, from free YouTube tutorials and free online trial sessions to subscription-based workouts and one-to-one Skype Pilates classes. Apart from genuine online classes, there is a variety of Pilates DVDs on offer.
Online subscriptions are available from around £12 ($19 in the US) per month giving you unlimited access to a huge variety of exercises. Alternatively, some online providers also offer the option to get unlimited access to a chosen workout for a one-off fee, which is usually around £10 ($12 in the US). One-to-one tuition via Skype generally ranges between £35 and £60 ($30 and $60 in the US) per session. Most Pilates DVDs are between £5 and £25 ($7 – $20 in the US).
Free YouTube tutorials are a good choice if you just want a change from your usual workout from time to time, provided you are already familiar with the principles of Pilates and know how to do the exercises safely. The same is true for Pilates DVDs. Subscription-based workouts have the benefit of being more structured and targeted. They are ideal when you need a structured workout that you want to do as your main exercise routine. One-to-one tuition via Skype offers the additional benefit of being interactive. This means you can ask questions and get corrected as required.
What do I need to spend on Pilates workout clothing?
Actually, you don’t have to spend anything on a Pilates outfit. If you are on a tight budget, you can just wear any comfortable loose but not baggy clothes. There is no need for shoes. However, if you prefer to get purpose-made Pilates clothes, you can choose from a huge variety of tops, bottoms and underwear.
Pilates tops start at around £10 ($14 in the US) whilst popular quality brands cost around £40 to £50 ($45 to $60 in the US) with no upper limit. Bottoms commonly range between £12 ($14) for lower-end brands to £60 ($70 in the US) for popular designer brands. Again, there is no upper limit.
For underwear, as a female it’s important to wear a comfortable bra which should be wireless. Supportive wireless bras are available from less than £10 (less than $10 in the US) and cost up to around £45 ($60 in the US) for a branded Pilates/Yoga bra.
Whether you wear just any comfy clothes, lower-end fitness brands or more costly designer brands is completely up to you. It won’t have a direct effect on your workout performance whether you spend little or a lot on your outfit – although it might have a psychological impact.
How much do I need to spend on Pilates home workout equipment?
If you have decided to do Pilates at home – be it to save money or to have maximum flexibility – the question arises of how much and what sort of Pilates home equipment you need for your workouts. The answer is: not much, really, although there is quite a comprehensive choice of equipment available if you fancy it, from small items, such as resistance bands, magic circles, exercise balls and foam rollers through to large items, such as spine corrector barrels and reformers.
One item you definitely need is an exercise mat. Mats generally cost between £7 ($10 in the US) for simple unbranded ones and £60 ($70 in the US) for luxury branded ones. Resistance bands are about £7 – £25 ($6 – $20 in the US) for a multi-pack, magic circles are available for £8 – £30 ($12 – $40 in the US) depending on brand, exercise balls cost between £8 and £40 ($10 and $40 in the US) and foam rollers are about £8 – £30 ($7 – $40 in the US).
If you want to set up a Pilates home gym with large Pilates equipment, you need to dish out much more although the cost for larger Pilates items varies considerably depending on model and manufacturer. Spine corrector barrels cost around £180 – £380 ($200 – $700 in the US). A simple reformer bench is available for £280 – £700 ($300 – $900 in the US), whilst the more extensive reformer styles are about £1,200 – £4,500 ($1,200 – $7,000 in the US).
Pilates is as much as you can afford
You see that Pilates can cost very little – if you decide to workout at home, use just an exercise mat and maybe a few pieces of small equipment, watch free Pilates tutorials and wear any comfortable clothes, although most people probably go for more than the minimum. Also, every accessory and piece of equipment comes in a wide range of prices so that you choose how much luxury you can or want to afford.
When you first start off and need face-to-face classes, you have the choice between affordable group classes and one-to-one tuition and between different grades of instructors in various types of venues to suit your budget.
However, if you want to give it a luxurious feel, Pilates can be as glamorous as you wish. In any case, you can enjoy the benefits of Pilates workouts regardless of your budget. So, everyone can afford to work out for a healthy and pain-free spine.
What do you prefer – keeping expenditure to a minimum or going for luxury when exercising?