5 Ways to Embrace the Chaos

The first blog in our series: Free Yourself from the Myths of the Perfect At-Home Pilates Practice.
Myth #1: Your Space Must Be Free of Distractions

Reality: Embrace the Chaos

In a perfect world, all of our Pilates sessions would be quiet, serene, and focused. In truth, we tolerate a level of imperfection everywhere we practice - even in the studio. Maybe the client next to you is sneezing, or there are four Private sessions and a Duet happening simultaneously in a studio that only comfortably holds four, or no one is claiming the cell phone ringing loudly from the cubbies. But your level of tolerance might be greater at a studio for one key reason: most of those distractions aren’t yours.

There is a myth, however, that at home, you can control the space, and that myth allows the frustration of distractions to bubble to the surface more easily. Can you really control that space any more than you can control the studio? Maybe not. The phone rings; the cat throws up on the rug (true story); a baby wakes up early from her nap; somewhere, the gardener uses a loud leafblower requiring us to turn up the volume on the online Pilates video we’re watching... Sometimes, we can’t control those things either.

So, what do we do to cope with inevitable distractions and keep our online Pilates practice alive and well?

Here are 5 tips to keep you focused and having fun:

1. Pause If Necessary.

If the distraction is real, e.g., the cat throws up, press pause, clean it up, and, yep, go back to practicing! Hey – it ALL counts. Five minutes here, 10 minutes there. Flow is a Principle of Pilates, and certainly an ideal, but sometimes your practice just is not turning out to be an unending flow. It’s okay to pause.

2. Keep Going!

If the distraction doesn’t need attention right away, keep going. Turn your phone off, turn up the video volume, close the door to your practice area, or turn on some music to allow yourself to fully sink into the moment.

3. Find Your Breath.

Another Principle of Pilates is breath. If you find yourself getting irritated and unable to focus, return to your breath. Distractions can be an unwelcome, but good reminder to get back to the basics.

4. Play.

Reduce the pressure on yourself to make it perfect and make it fun. There is a time and place for a serious practice, but Pilates doesn’t have to be serious all the time. The goal is to move our bodies to feel better. If you’re accomplishing that, you’re doing great.

5. Deviate.

I said it - deviate from the video. Gasp! I’ll let you all in on a Pilates Anytime secret: we know you’re not necessarily doing all exercises the way they are presented on the video. Once, I paused a Pilates video and did jumping jacks. I just felt like I had pent up energy I had to expend before I could get into deep focus on a small movement. It worked, and I was able to return to the video, getting more out of it than if I had just pressed on.

Your at-home Pilates practice environment won't look like anyone else's, and it might change every single day. Press play, embrace the chaos, and just keep moving.

Chanda Hinman
About the Author

Chanda Hinman

Chanda is a Pilates teacher, certified on all apparatus by the Equinox Pilates Institute. She has been an employee of Pilates Anytime since 2016. She believes that Pilates is about returning to our natural state, forgetting our mind's machinations and improving symmetry, focus, mobility, strength, and confidence. Pilates makes it possible for her to do everything she loves to do in life from Lyra (aerial hoop) to Skiing. Photo Credit: Pilates Anytime


When I started this business, I thought it was going to be for people other than me, people who didn't have a studio of their own, a studio or teacher to go to, or who worked long hours. Before long, I found that the end of the day had arrived and I still needed to do my Pilates! I am one of the biggest users of Pilates Anytime at home now (and I do mean user, not watcher)! I whole heartedly agree with you Chanda. Pause when necessary, rewind if it takes you longer to set up something or you get distracted, but keep going, claim your right to breathe whenever you want, have fun with it, and when you know different variations that you prefer... deviate!! Thank you Chanda!
Chanda Hinman
Thank YOU Kristi Cooper ! For making it all possible.

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