Before printing, click on File, then Page setup, & select landscape orientation
  Classical pilates mat online workout:   the rest position Classic pilates beginner exercises online
Free pilates exercises online
Pilates information
(1) Learning Pilates from other than a real live instructor is not easy, and does carry some slight risks. You should (in addition to these notes) attend a course of certified Pilates mat sessions. This is the safest way to learn, and it's also a lot of fun! (2) Please ensure that you are competent in "Pilates Contrology". (free pdf e-book).

Setup for Rest Position:
  • From the "table top" position (knees slightly apart, or just wider than your hips), scoop your abs, anchor your shoulder blades to your ribes, and sit back on your heels.
  • Lengthen your arms over your head.
Action for Rest Position.
  • Scoop deep, and breathe normally for 3 breathes.
  • Take the opportunity to check your alignment, and to experiment with using the position to stretch your buttocks, and the muscles around your shoulder joints.
Start Position:
Table Top
The Table top position

Diagram: Alternative rest position for if you have DDH (see "Modifications"). Pilates Alternative Rest Position

(Classical Pilates Cueing: The Rest Position, Scroll right>>>...)

Classical Pilates for Beginners:
The Rest Position

Pilates: The Rest Position
Level: Beginner, Repetitions: 1 - (three breathes)

Previous Exercise:
The The Swan/neck roll-
The Spine Stretch Forward
(In classical Pilates Exercise, The Swan/Neck Roll preceeds the Rest Position).
Next Exercise:
The Shoulder Bridge-Prep.
Classical Pilates Online: Shoulder Bridge Prep
Roll over onto your back with knees bent and feet about 9 inches away from your hips...

Classic Pilates Cueing:
  • Breathe into the sides of your ribs and upper back!

Classical Pilates Technique: The Rest Position, © Bruce Thomson, EasyVigour Project
  • Stretches the gluteal muscles and thus "makes space" behind the hip joint - corrects any tendency for the femoral head to move forward in its socket.
  • Stretches the lower back & around the sacrum.
  • Can be used as a stretch for the shoulder joints and/or the upper back.
  • Stretches the shin muscles.
Precision Points:
  • Keep feet, knees and buttocks in aligment (diagram to right gives an example of poor aligment due to tightness in the left buttock).
  • Work the "powerhouse" and keep the shoulder points back and shoulder blades down.

Rest Position: Bent Knees.
Modifications: Don't let an injury or weakness stop you! There is always a modification. Take your time and find the right one for you. If in doubt, seek advice!
  • Hip replacements - do not sit back, but remain in the table top position - (check with your surgeon!).
  • DDH - Developmental Dysplasia of the Hips with symptoms of hip pain - perform this exercise with knees apart.
  • Pain in groin or knee, rock back as far as pain alows, hold and relax.