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Pilates Mat Exercises with a Thera Band

Pilates Mat Exercises with a Thera Band

class planning Apr 08, 2020

As much as we love Pilates mat work on its own, adding props can be a fun way to add some variety. Depending on how you use them, they can make an exercise more challenging or they can assist you through challenging movements. 

The exercises below use a Thera Band. Try them out and let me know in the comments which ones are your favorites!

You'll find videos and detailed descriptions of each of these exercises inside the Pilates Encyclopedia membership!


  • Ankle circles: Step one foot into the band, bottom leg extended on the mat
  • Hamstring stretch: Pull down on the band
  • Point + flex
  • One leg circles
  • Lift and lower straight leg
  • Straight leg twist with the band in your L hand, R arm in a T-position
  • Adductor stretch: band in R hand, open straight leg out to the right side
  • Footwork on the mat: (aka Bend + Stretch, aka Double Leg Stretch with chest lifted or down)
  • Frogs
  • Roll Up: Step both feet into the band
  • Bridging (arms in slight V with tension on band): Band over the front of your hips
  • Hold chest lift while arms press down: Legs in Table Top, band over shins 
  • The Hundred (pull out to the side instead of pumping up and down): Band behind your thighs, legs in tabletop
  • Butterflies: Wrap band around thighs
  • Double Leg Stretch (pull gently apart as you bring arms overhead): Band between your hands


  • Clams: Wrap band around thighs


  • Dart/Double Leg Kicks/Lift and lower arms/Small pulses out and in: Hold band with your hands behind your back



  • Curl-point-uncurl-flex/Rowing (wide and narrow)/Twist w/ one arm row (pull one elbow back)/Chest Expansion: Sit w/ both feet in band
  • Roll Down
  • Spine Twist: Band behind your back arms wide
  • Spine Stretch (pull band apart while stretching forward): Hold band in your hands


Kneeling + Quadruped

  • The Z: Band between hands
  • One Leg Kick back: One foot in band crossed over, extend leg back, lift and lower leg



  • Standing Roll Down
  • Biceps curls: Standing with both feet hip-width on the band, hold it with your hands (shoulder depression)
  • Shoulder Opening: lift arms, lower arms with band behind you
  • Pull band apart with palms up
  • External Rotation: With palms facing up and elbows by your sides, externally rotate your arms > extend arms away from the body
  • Eversion and inversion of the foot: Stand with one foot in the band, cross ends of band in opposite hand
  • Chest Expansion: Hold band with your hands, across your thighs, pull band straight back
  • Flexion of thoracic spine: band around ribcage, press against band
  • Lateral shift: Band around your upper back, arms move in opposite direction


Do you have any other favorites I didn't mention here? Let me know in the comments!  

Buy Your TheraBand Here:


Want more Pilates tutorials with detailed cues and teaching tips?

It's all inside Pilates Encyclopedia Member Library!
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