Balance and resistance training using small apparatus is a great way to build strength and stability whether you are a novice Pilates student or have been doing it for years!

The coach ball is a great tool to start as it is a simple prop with many different uses. It can add a balance and resistance factor that can make any Pilates class more challenging, interesting, and lets be honest more comical 🙂 There is absolutely something to be said for having a laugh (or two) throughout your workout!

So grab your coach ball, get ready to work hard (and perhaps smile) along the way!

Standing warm up:Thor rotation + leg reach_cr

Ball between knees, Sagittal arm arcs

Sagittal arm arcs, plus heels raises, squeezing ball between knees

Squats + arm raises

Squats + cat cow

Ball underneath right foot, tall on left leg, sending ball forward and back

Straightening right leg, turn head to the left

Straightening right led, turn head to the left, add arm swings

Side bend, passing the ball from one hand to another

Reach one arm up and over, side bend, circle the arm and torso forward and around, restacking the spine.

-Repeat other side-


Ball under right hand, reaching arm forward, twisting spine to the leftQuadruped reaching ball_cr

-Repeat other side-

Ball between knees, rib glides

+knee hovers + ball between knees

+knee hovers + pulsing inner thighs into the ball

Ball under left shin, press into opposite right knee left hand

Reach right arm forward and up, roll ball away with left shin

-Repeat other side-


Sit, then roll down to supine:

Ball in right hand, arm towards the ceiling, with the right knee bent, rotate the body over to the left reaching the right shoulder blade and hand up towards the ceiling; draw the shoulder down, rolling back down, rolling the whole body down in one piece like a log.

-Repeat on other side-Supine hip fold_cr

Ball under pelvis, pelvic tilts

+arms reaching back by the ears as the hip bones slide away from the ribs, arc the arms down by the hip as the pelvis tucks.

Hip swishes (slow and then fast)

Ball under lumbar spine, Larger pelvic tilts.

Keep pelvis tucked, add hip folds, one leg at a time; this will add some isometric work for the obliques

Keep pelvis tucked, add ab curls

Ab curls + Hip folds w/ the tucked pelvisThoracic extension_cr


Ab curl w/ ball between shoulder blades

Ab curl + Hip fold

Ab curl + hip fold, adding an oblique twist

Right side – on elbow:

Ball underneath ankle of the straightened right legSide bridge with foot on the ball_cr

Roll ball away, reaching right arm above head, arching ribcage up towards the ceiling

Keeping right leg light on the ball, lift hips, and arch right arm over the head

Side Lying:

Ball between inner thighs, both legs straight, lifting both legs

legs lifted, pulsing inner thighs into the ball


Ball under chest, arms bent at two capital “L“’s; pressing into hands, lift chest and head

Press into extension, pressing into right hand, rotating spine to the right

-Repeat Left side – on elbow and Side Lying on left side-


Ball under pelvis, ab curl + right leg to table top

ab curl + straighten right leg, lower leg down towards the mat


Ball between the ankles:

Lateral arm arcs

Squats + single arm raises + rotation

Lateral arm arcs + slight thoracic flexion + extension

With breath: sweep arms up and swing them down while bending legs


Author: Lee Melamed

Lee Melamed PilatesLee is a Pilates & Movement teacher who can put a smile on anybody’s face. Her classes are fun and challenging. Lee has a Body Harmonics Comprehensive Pilates diploma and a BA (hons).

“Whether the goal is rehabilitation and injury prevention or simply a new fitness routine, I believe that everyone can benefit from Pilates. I am privileged to be able to spend my days helping my clients get to where they want to be.”