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The Benefits of Doing Pilates To Burn Calories & Get in Shape

by Prateek Godika 15 Mar 2023

Pilates is immensely popular for toning, improving posture, and building lean muscle mass as a low-impact exercise. For decades, regardless of age and fitness level, men and women have benefited from Pilates to maintain a healthy weight. 

However, compared to the other forms of cardio exercises like rowing or swimming, Pilates has generally considered a less effective workout for shedding pounds.

We will explore more about our calories-burned while using a Pilates reformer, but let's first delve deeper into understanding the science behind burning extra calories. while using a Pilates reformer.


Weight loss and calorie burning are just a couple of the advantages of combining Pilates, which is a total-body workout. It is easier to estimate how many more you burn fewer calories or how much weight you lose while losing weight than when doing Pilates if you exercise in a carefully monitored lab setting.

Twelve test subjects were used in Michele Olson, Ph.D., FACSM's investigation into the effect of Pilates on calorie burning. The study used beginner, intermediate, and advanced workouts according to level and workout intensity. The cardiovascular output of each subject was monitored carefully. No additional Pilates apparatus was used during the test, which was for mat exercises. The number of calories burned was measured using an oxygen/metabolic cart. 5 kcal are the calories burned for every liter of oxygen [LO2] consumed. Regular checks were made on the subjects' perceived exertion (RPE) ratings and heart rates.

The results indicated a clear correlation between Pilates workouts, weight loss and calorie burn. The study demonstrated that when higher levels of regular pilates practice were maintained in frequency and duration, intermediate and advanced levels of pilates workouts quickly satisfied the requirements for weight loss. According to the study, Pilates exercises should be performed at least four days a week for 45–60 minutes each.

Additionally, the findings revealed that beginner Pilates reformer exercises would result in calorie burn rates of 4 per minute, 6 per minute, and 7.5 per minute, respectively, for intermediate and advanced mat Pilates exercises. Every 60 minutes of practice Pilates alone, between 240 and 450 calories are expended. However, this is a typical estimate of how many calories a mat Pilates workout can burn. Consequently, the number of calories burned per hour while doing Pilates depends on using a Pilates reformer can be significantly higher.

The number of calories burned doing the Pilates reformer classes regularly also depends on the person's weight. When using a Pilates reformer, you can combine two or more exercises, burning a lot more calories per hour than a traditional Pilates machine and even fewer calories than doing mat work alone.

The difference in how slightly more calories are burned during an advanced pilates workout is due to the different basal metabolic rates (BMR). Your body's basal metabolic rate (BMR), which varies with age, sex, weight, and body composition, is the number of calories required to maintain health and function. Your caloric burn and metabolic rate can be significantly increased with exercises like Pilates.

To determine whether you are moving toward your cardiovascular health and fitness health goals, measuring the outcomes of every workout is critical. The guidelines also applied to the Pilates reformer class and calories burned per hour.


While there are numerous ways to determine how many more calories per hour you burn calories while using a Pilates reformer, the majority of them can be difficult and call for special lab equipment. The following three calculation methods, however, are much easier to handle:


You can determine how many more calories per hour you burn while practicing hot Pilates with heart rate monitors. These monitors gauge how well the heart is working. The heart's function and the number of calories burned during exercise are directly related because the body needs oxygen to burn calories, and the heart pumps that oxygen throughout the entire body throughout. Additionally, some heart rate monitors on the market estimate how many calories are burned in hot Pilates based on your BMR and the typical heart rate throughout the workout.


To calculate how many calories you burn during a reformer Pilates exercise, or workout routine, you can also use heart rate-based calorie burn calculators. You can perform all the calculations online, so you don't need any additional hardware. The pilates calorie burn calculator readings are constrained because they can't track how many calories reformer Pilates exercises burn across different planes of motion.

Here are two online calorie counters you can use:

Runtastic calories burned calculator

Omni calories burned by heart rate calculator

Does Pilates flatten the belly?

Stomach fat comprises visceral fat, subcutaneous fat, and a weak core. 

The first component of stomach fat is the visceral layer around and between your organs. Visceral fat is used as protection. When you are overweight, it will also act as a storage area. Visceral fat is tight, so even though your stomach will bulge, it will feel familiar.

The second type of body fat is subcutaneous fat. This layer is directly under the skin, and the fat feels and looks 'flabby.' Women store slightly more subcutaneous fat and burn fewer calories than men (mainly for use during child-rearing). In contrast to women, men with excess abdominal fat typically have complex, tight, or flabby stomachs. Women tend to store fat in the subcutaneous rather than the visceral layer, which accounts for this.

Weak core muscles are the third factor in a flabby stomach, and Pilates can be beneficial here. Not only Pilates burn calories to build and muscle tone the muscles in the core, but also to burn fat and improve blood oxygenation to lean muscle, both of which increase calorie burning and cell renewal burn.

A Weak Core Gets Stronger with Pilates

It would help if you lost fat from all over your body because it is impossible to really lose weight if it directly from your stomach. You must increase your cardiovascular activity, eat a more healthy lifestyle, diet less, breathe properly, and do Pilates to lose weight and achieve fitness goals for this.

A weak core is the one area where we can "spot" trains, and Pilates is the best exercise. The core muscles of the pelvic floor, abdomen, and back are the foundation of Pilates. Subcutaneous and visceral fat must be burned off along with the rest of the body's fat. Pilates exercises your intercostal muscles, which help you breathe, and expands and stretches your lung capacity, making your abdominal muscles more robust and more effective at burning calories and fat. The more you burn, the fewer calories burned when oxygen is converted into carbon more quickly and easily. This improved conversion also improves cell function by pumping more oxygen into the blood. However, Pilates will result in something other than significant calorie burn. For this reason, hot do pilates burn calories, we advise trying a different cardio exercise; cycling, walking, and swimming are all excellent options.

Other Factors to Reduce Stomach Fat

There are a few other things to consider about the fat on our stomachs. We all have different genetic makeup; some people store fatter in the stomach, some on the hips and thighs, etc. Also, where you last stored fat will be the first place that it comes off when you lose body weight, or fat. Women tend to store fat on the stomach and thighs first, so this will potentially be the last place that will shed excess body weight too.

There is another factor that will affect stomach fat – stress. When we have a lot of stress in our lives (who doesn't have a lot of pressure these days?), we release more of the hormone called cortisol which triggers fat storage in the abdomen. Pilates helps to address the stress in our lives because it takes you out of your day entirely for one. Two or three hours a week. You focus on your breathing, body, and mind, which is profoundly relaxing and stress-reducing.

To Recap, Can Pilates Give You a Flat Stomach?

Yes! Doing Pilates strengthens core muscles, increasing the body's fat-burning efficiency and reducing stress in your life. Pilates and another form of cardiovascular workouts can provide colossal weight loss benefits. But a one-off pilates session once a week for three or four weeks will only give you a basic understanding of Pilates principles. You will need a more intensive practice of 3 strength training sessions or 4 times per week, plus some form of fat-burning cardio exercise, and address the stress in your life, eat a healthy balanced diet to get great results. Can Pilates change your body in 2 weeks?

Two weeks does not mean a physical transformation will occur through regular Pilates sessions alone; however, a healthier lifestyle, healthy diet alone, and regular exercise can start the process within two weeks. Unlike physical activities, consistent practice can help to produce visible body changes. A good, healthy diet, and daily exercise improve flexibility and posture and increase strength, resulting in toned and streamlined body composition and improved posture.

Is Pilates enough exercise for 30 minutes?

To help you get individualized feedback on your particular strength training needs so that you can benefit the most from the group Pilates classes, we initially advise that you take 2 to 4 private Pilates instructor instructions.

You should take these private Pilates sessions to help you reduce the risk of straining any muscles that might happen if you are unaware of your body's limitations.

Since your body is likely not accustomed to performing all the movements required or other cardio exercises to get your body into shape if you're beginning an all aerobic exercise workout or strength training program, this is true.

To get full body workout and experience the benefits of Pilates (such as weight loss, increased flexibility, better balance, and strengthening), you should attend Pilates classes (either private or group) 2-3 times per week.

Don't expect to have toned arms or legs within the first month of practicing pilates regularly, because it will take several more weeks for Pilates to start showing results in your muscles.

You will, however, lose weight and eventually your weight loss will see results if you keep up the exercises!

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