Jessica’s 30 Minute Chair Workout

Jessica Wade’s 30 minute chair workout features, as indicated by the name, a chair as the only necessary prop for a complete Pilates mat workout. Did we mention that it’s also super fun? Jessica has thrown in an advanced backbend for an added challenge. So sit back…literally…and get ready for Jessica’s chair workout!


Pure Pilates Pensacola 30 Minute Chair Workout
Warm-up – Standing beside the chair (with the chair facing away) place one hand on the back for some side bends.  (3 X’s each side.)
Place both hands on the chair some spinal flexion and extension.  
Keeping both hands on the chair, walk your feet back for flat back leg lifts. Keep hips parallel.  (10 X’s each leg.)
To the floor: Turn the chair around and place it on the matt for traction.  
Let’s start with roll downs. The feet should be in parallel and almost the width of the chair.  (8 X’s.)
As you progress you can add a foot to the top of the chair or maybe two.  The challenge could also be to extend the legs fully for a Teaser prep.
Moving into the Hundred. Lying on your back with legs fully extended, lifting head and pumping arms from the shoulders.  (Inhale for 5 pumps/ exhale for 5 pumps. 100 X’s) The higher the legs are for the Hundred the easier the exercise.
Place the feet back onto the chair. Place arms on the side of the body. Lift the hips up for bridge by rolling up one vertebra at a time. To add a challenge lift the arms up towards the ceiling.  (3 X’s)
For the super-advanced add a full Backbend. (If you are adding the Backbend, place chair next to wall for safety. 1 X is enough, trust me!)  
Place hips back on the floor. Bring your knees into chest to rock from side to side. Take a second to yourself. 
Extend the Legs up towards the ceiling for Scissors.  (10 X’s each in both vertical and horizontal directions)
Sit up and turn to one side for a nice Mermaid stretch. (2 X’s on each side)       
Onto the stomach with your legs the width of the chair for Swan prep. Press your hands into the floor and lift.  (8 X’s) For the added challenge, extend the arms forward and lift.
Coming up onto all fours. Modified Push Ups. Keep your hands under the shoulders, body weight forward.  For the added challenge, extend the legs. (10 X’s)
Staying on your knees, lift your hands up off the floor for Thigh Stretch. (6-8 X’s)
Stand up for lunges. Depending on your skill level, the chair can help in two ways. You can use the chair as stability support with both feet on the ground. Or for the added challenge place one foot up on top of the seat. (10 X’s each leg)
Have a seat in the chair for tri-cep dips. Keep hips close to the chair. Extend the legs fully for the challenge.  (10-12 X’s)
Extend the legs fully, if you haven’t already done so with the tri-cep dips, and move directly into the assisted Leg Pull. Using the chair makes this wonderful exercise a little easier.  
Then have a seat for a well-earned Piriformis Stretch. Cross ankle over the knee, keep your back as straight as possible and lean forward.  Hold each stretch for about 30 seconds, repeat 3 X’s on each side.
Stand up, tall and strong to have a great day.

Jessica Wade is an experienced Pilates instructor. She was recently accepted into the Balanced Body Faculty Training Program and will soon attend the training necessary to teach up-and-coming Pilates apprentice instructors . If you enjoyed Jessica’s chair workout, join her for private sessions and classes. Jessica is available for privates throughout the week and is teaching over the holidays. To view her holiday teaching schedule, visit us on MindBody. To make an appointment with Jessica, call Pure Pilates Downtown at 850-607-2772.