After leaving her corporate job in luxury hospitality, Camai Brandenberg of @embodybycam became a certified pilates and yoga instructor to marry her experience as a division-one high jumper and heptathlete with her love for the mindfulness that yoga bestows. Now the founder of Embody Babe, a 4-week pilates program, Camai is showing us how to do 3 pilates moves right from your living room or backyard in the video tutorials below—one that targets your core and arms, one that targets your glutes, and another that targets your triceps, chest, and shoulders.
Keep scrolling for Camai's pilates tutorials, a list of the equipment you can use (but don’t need), the stretches she recommends doing beforehand, and her tips for how to incorporate classic pilates moves into your weekly workout routine.
- 1-2 lb ankle weights
- Bala Bangles
Stretches specific to the lower body—hip flexors, hamstrings (back of leg), and quadriceps (front of the leg)—are important. People have a tendency to strain their hip flexors and activate their quadricep muscles when performing lower ab work on their back, so it's important to stretch both before and after. I incorporate stretches in between the exercises, such as a lying twist after core work to lengthen the muscles.
Benefits of a body weight workout like pilates:
Body weight workouts are ideal because they creates a strong foundation based in body awareness and attention to form, which is very important in pilates. Your form is the difference between an exercise being so-so or truly effective. This foundation is needed so you can eventually add in additional weights and props. You will gain strength and endurance which will also benefit your day-to-day movements like picking your children up and moving furniture.
How to incorporate classic pilates into your weekly workout:
Classic pilates training is great for strength and toning so one would have to incorporate some type of cardio if their intention is weight loss. This can be achieved by performing the exercises in 2-3 rounds to create a circuit, transitioning quickly from standing to lying work and/or adding slightly heavier weights which will also elevate your heart rate. My go-to cardio is jumping rope several times a week (4 sets of 500 minimum) especially for my 4-Week Pilates Program clients. It doesn’t take long, doesn’t require much space, and provides a fun challenge.
The move: The Hundred
What it targets: Core and arms, warming up your entire body for an effective workout.
How many sets to do: 5 count inhale and 5 count exhale = 10 count for 10 sets = 100
The move: Rainbow Glute Series
What it targets: Glutes and hamstrings to lift your backside and create long, lean legs.
How many sets to do: 20 counts rainbowing the leg to the right and left for 2-3 sets each leg. Keep it even!
The move: Narrow & Wide Push-Up
What it targets: Triceps, chest, and shoulders to develop your secondary powerhouse (upper body).
How many sets to do: 10 reps for 2-3 sets
Follow @embodybycam for more pilates-yoga fusion workouts