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What Should I Wear To A Pilates Class?

Updated: Apr 18, 2023

Pilates often gets partnered with yoga. And yoga is often seen as a activity that you can only do if you are attired correctly.

I'm a firm believer that this isn't so with Pilates...

So what is the ideal thing to wear?

Generally yoga wear is actually perfect. So is what the average person wears to the gym. But think about this - it also doesn't even need to specific active or exercise clothes. I wear a lot of normal non gym leggings or pants with a top I also wear when I'm out for lunch with my mum. Sometimes when you first see me I don't always look like I'm about to take an exercise class. I just suggest to anyone new to Pilates classes that you wear something comfortable, and make sure you can move in it.

Is there anything I shouldn't wear?

You are obviously going to be exercising and although you won't be moving around the room you will still need to move your legs and arms. Jeans and bulky coats that restrict movement aren't a great idea. Neither is a dress with no tights or leggings underneath so you can't lie down and lift your legs wihtout flashing your knickers! I would also remove bulky jewelry for safety reasons.

Other Tips:

You don't need to worry about what is on your feet. you will either be bare foot, in socks or in non-slip yoga socks depending on the preference of your instructor. So you don't need to remember your trainers.

Next is to make sure you dress for your environment. My home studio and the school hall I use can both get a little chilly in the colder months. Layering is key here. There is always a chance you will warm up and get a little sweaty in Pilates as it's not a static format so plenty of thinner layers that you can strip off when needed and put back on for stretches or relaxation at the end are always a must for me.

What about online classes?

I'd definately say as long as you were safe then it doesn't really matter what you wear to an online class as you are in your own home. I have a friend who wears her work clothes to one of my online classes and on the odd occasion she is in a dress she just lies in a way that the camera can't see up her skirt! Again if it is comfortable and you can move it should be fine.

What do you wear as an instructor?

My attire is always a mix of gym or active wear and more normal clothing. I get cold really easily and when teaching do a lot more walking and talking than actual exercising as once I have demonstrated I get up and watch what my participants are doing whilst at the same time giving more directions or individaul corrections where needed.

I definately wear a lot of layers and often wear leggings with yoga pants, or even black PJ pants over as they aren't too bulky. For my top half I usually wear either a long vest top with a long sleeved top over or a knee length stretchy dress with something appropriate underneath depending on the dresses length of sleeves and the weather. I then pretty much always have a cardigan or jumper on over the top and some sort of chiffon scarf.

I find very few things are a complete no no for a Pilates's not like you are about to go pound on a treadmill.

Victoria xx


I'm a little unique and not scared of wearing something a little different. Also I really dislike having to get changed every day before I take a class and always aim to make my life as easy as possible. If you aren't like me then please stick to your yoga or gym wear.


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