Absolute Pilates


Located at 305 Carbondale Rd, 
Waverly Twp. PA, 18411
 (570) 851-1259

Pilates is for Riders
Create a deeper seat and an ideal riding partnership with your horse.
  • Frustrated that your horse won't respond properly to your commands?
  • Having trouble keeping a stable seat?
  • Feeling unusually sore and tired after a ride?

Imbalances develop over time, based on physiology, posture and lifestyle. How you move when not riding – other types of exercise, the amount (and quality) of sitting you do at work, etc. – directly affects how you function on a horse. Resulting asymmetries greatly affect movement and alignment, resulting in impediments like:

  • Rounded shoulders
  • Tightness and curving in the lower back
  • Tight hamstrings
  • Why Pilates?

    Pilates exercises increase your body awareness, and improve flexibility, balance, and strength in order to facilitate an optimal riding experience. Pilates helps equestrians:

    • Lengthen the spine and strengthen the core, which stabilizes the body in movement
    • Sculpt a stronger body with increased flexibility, strength, and balance
    • Create a deeper seat and enhance the suppleness of the lower back
    • Strengthen the abdominals
    • Increase hip independence
    • Increase leg and body length

    Performance Benefits

    With a strong core and increased flexibility, riders can:

    • Freely and gently move arms and legs around a stable base
    • Help clarify aids and hold jumping form
    • Avoid collapsing and bouncing in the saddle
    • Better absorb a horse's movement
    • Improve posture to help you deepen your seat
    • Increase comfort during and after your ride
    • Maintain neutral pelvis so you can easily follow your horse's movements
    • Develop a trusting riding relationship, where your horse responds to your commands and is confident in your ability


Exercises for Riders

Circles: With pelvis stable and inner thighs together, move legs down, open legs out to sides and circle them around to starting position. Do 6 to 10 circles in each direction.

  • Leg positions - Parallel, turned out or turned in.
  • Place straps around knees to warm up hips and decrease the challenge.

Frogs: With the pelvis stable, the legs turned out, the knees bent and the feet together, raise and lower the legs.

  • Breaststroke: From frog position, straighten legs into a "V", bring inner thighs together and bend knees to start again. Reverse direction.


Hamstring: Place one ankle in strap and opposite leg on footbar. Straighten leg in strap to stretch hamstring. Straighten leg on footbar to decrease stretch.

Adductor: Place both arches in straps and open legs to stretch adductors.

Hamstring and Psoas: Place one ankle in strap and straighten leg to stretch hamstring.


  • Engage abdominals before legs lower, and keep them engaged.
  • Scoop abdominals to begin and don't let them pop as legs lower.
  • Lower legs only as far as back can stay stable throughout exercise.
  • Monitor low back position with hands.
  • Move legs symmetrically.


For low back and sacroiliac joint problems: Make sure low back is not changing positions as legs move. Support low back in a neutral position with a towel. Limit range of motion as legs lower. Avoid if symptoms increase.
For hip flexor injuries and arthritis: Work only in a range of motion that does not increase symptoms. Work with knees rather than feet in straps to decrease load on hips, or avoid if symptoms increase.
For limited hamstring flexibility: In order to avoid stress on low back, hamstring flexibility needs to be great enough to allow back to stay stable as legs move to approximately 65 degrees of hip flexion.