Pilates instructor Ashley Patten on her favorite gear for your home studio
The pandemic has forced many of us to get creative when it comes to working out. We’ve tried various YouTube workout classes and explored the versatility of the Kettlebell. For Katie, she has taken up Pilates — a form of exercise that focuses on low-impact flexibility and muscular strength. Her instructor Ashley Patten has been teaching Pilates for 13 years and is now offering virtual classes on her website. We recently talked to Ashley about the benefits of Pilates and how you can incorporate these types of movements into your own exercise routine. With a mat and a few pieces of equipment, Ashley says Pilates can help prevent injury and train every muscle. Below, we’ve put together a list of Ashley’s go-to workout gear to get started.
#1 Bala Bangles
Bala Bangles are one of Ashley’s top picks for your home studio. These little weights are the perfect way to add a constant but comfortable resistance to each workout. Starting at just 1/2 pound each, Bala Bangles can be worn on your wrists or your ankles and come in tons of fun colors. From folding laundry to walking the dog, you can make the world your gym.
#2 Beyond Yoga Spacedye Set
The Beyond Yoga’s Spacedye set is by far one of their most popular. Ashley says their leggings and top are the “softest workout gear ever.” Their high-waisted legging hits just above the ankle and will quickly become a go-to piece you wear every single day. The best part? These leggings come in 16 colors. Pair it with the matching Spacedye Slim Racerback Tank, and you’re good to go. “I own multiple colors in all of these things,” Ashley told us. “I’m the kind of person that when I find something I like I buy multiples in case it goes out of stock.”
#3 Alo Cover Long Sleeve Top
“I never know if I am going to be hot or cold, so I love to layer,” Ashley told us. Her go-to layer is this Cover Long Sleeve Top by Alo. It features a front wrap detail and ribbed sleeves. It’s the perfect piece to take you from a workout class to running errands around town. “This is my favorite because it’s light, so soft and doesn’t get too hot,” Ashley said.
#4 AeroPilates Magic Circle
The Magic Circle is Ashley’s number one pick for your home studio. It’s lightweight, easy to use and can be taken just about anywhere. Created by Joseph Pilates, the magic ring is designed to improve muscle tone of inner and outer thighs, arms, and chest.
#6 Pilates Socks
If you’re new to Pilates, try this pair of socks that can help prevent your feet from camping and slipping all over the mat. This pair from Sweaty Betty is made from organic cotton and features a grip panel on the sole to make sure you don’t slip. “I have clients who actually wear these all the time so they don’t slip at home,” Ashley told us.
#7 Sabah Shearling Baba Slides
Say hello to Ashley’s favorite ‘street to studio’ shoe. They’re stylish, comfortable and easy to slip in and out. This pair is lined with thick, furry, all-natural shearling to keep your feet nice and cozy during the cold winter months. Sabah’s shoes are handmade in Turkey and come in a range of different styles and colors. Ashley loves the slip on version when she’s heading to the studio.
#8 TheraBand Resistance Band Set
Since starting Pilates, Katie has loved using these TheraBands. “The resistance elastic bands are awesome for stretching,” Ashley told us. This kit on Amazon includes three five foot long bands, each color-coded with a different resistance level. TheraBands are easy to use and a great addition to your home gym.
#9 Alo Vapor Leopard Bra
Ashley loves this Vapor Bra by Alo. It’s made with a sleek and breathable fabric and designed to fit every size. It comes in white and olive and Ashley pairs it with this 7/8 High-Waist Legging that comes in so many fun colors.
#10 Airex Mat
Ashley introduced us to the perfect all-purpose mat. It’s great for Pilates, Yoga, Aerobics, stretching and more. “Traditional yoga mats are great,” Ashley said. “But this Airex one gives you the extra ‘squish’ you need for your spine.” The Airex Mat comes in two colors and features a non-slip texture that will stay flat on the floor during any exercise.
Ashley started her career in movement as a dancer. From dancing, to yoga and other movement practices, Ashley always came back to Pilates as a way to supplement her training and heal injuries. She began to teach Pilates, and after notable teaching and certifications, is excited to be launching her discipline and share it with the world. Ashley’s classes reflect the authentic principles of Pilates while simultaneously drawing from the vast experience of her movement career. See her full class schedule here.
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