Can overweight people do Pilates?

Yes, absolutely! At Pilates Northwest, we have clients of all shapes and sizes. We have people here who are younger, older, injured, At, beginners and advanced. They all get what they need here. We adapt Pilates to their needs.

For those who are overweight, determining what exercise modality is best has several considerations. As body fat significantly increases, range of motion, speed and agility typically decreases. We keep these things in mind. We won’t ask your body to do something it is not ready for. We will not start you too quickly. We will honor where you are and ask you where you want to go. We’ve seen strong athletes with too much body fat here. We’ve seen clients who are overweight and new to exercise. There is a perfect program for every person here at Pilates Northwest.

Together, we figure it out.

We have commercial equipment here that can accommodate all shapes and sizes. We welcome everyone. We like to personalize our teaching based on the clients’ goals, objectives and any limitations that may exist. Our equipment, made by Balanced Body® is the best available for strength, resilience, and durability.

pilates trapeze table pilates reformers

Balanced Body® Equipment

Studio Reformer
26.5″ wide, weight capacity 350 pounds

Trapeze Table
29″ wide, weight capacity 350 pounds


When working with overweight people, we work without overly compressing the abdomen. We do not overstress knees and we look at alignment and function, keeping the session “joint-friendly”. We keep clear communication about how exercises are feeling and write chart notes. We want you to feel better, get stronger, be in less pain and move with more ease.

We progress clients according to function, strength progression and their feedback. If a slower day is needed, that’s what will happen. Pilates is highly adaptable if the studio is adaptable. We all need something different, and our fully certified instructors have the skill set to figure out what will benefit each person. Pilates Northwest is an adaptable studio teaching individualized sessions.

Pilates has significant benefits for overweight or obese people, including:

pilates reformers

Pilates helps people

  • Increase strength and coordination
  • Develop and engage core musculature
  • Decrease joint stress by improving alignment
  • Breathe intentionally for stress reduction
  • Improve balance
  • Move more freely and with more ease

We want you to move better and feel better. We think Pilates is for improving life experience and for helping you do what you want to do with greater ease. Our clients report:

More ease in bending / squatting down with less joint and back pain. More success with navigating stairs and less knee pain.

More freedom in breathing from more lengthened, alignment posture. Less chronic musculoskeletal pain from strengthening the Pilates way. More ease in navigating everyday activities.

Pilates is an adaptable form of exercise for overweight or obese people that is easy on the joints with great benefits. Choosing a studio that customizes and personalizes sessions is important. Pilates Northwest does just that, and we are ready to help you get started.

Ready to try Pilates? We’re ready for you!

We modify your program to fit your specific needs. All our instructors are fully certified, professional, and friendly. Come see the difference of having an experienced, certified instructor with advanced education can make.

Have questions?

Email us, call us at (206) 368-6904 or send us a message!