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Which Pilates ring is best?

A regular Pilates practice helps you get stronger, tone your core, improve your posture, increase flexibility and sculpt your full, providing rapid improvement and benefits. If you’re just getting into Pilates, there’s no need to invest in pricey equipment like a Pilates machine or a series of in-studio classes. You can get the full benefits of Pilates at home with nothing but a workout mat and a Pilates ring. 

The best, the Gaiam Pilates Ring 15-Inch Fitness Circle, can be used for a variety of Pilates exercises.

What is a Pilates ring?

A Pilates ring is a small, versatile tool for providing resistance and encouraging good form during a variety of Pilates exercises. It provides feedback during Pilates movements to allow you to maintain balance and good posture and to tone and strengthen your body.

Pilates rings feature pads that support your hands and feet, and are used regularly in Pilates mat and machine workouts. Rather than being tightly clenched for intense strength training, Pilates rings are meant to be gently or moderately squeezed. 

What to look for in a quality Pilates ring 

If you already frequent a Pilates studio, ask your instructor what features they recommend for you. Your instructor might recommend a smaller or larger ring based on your height or a higher or lower tension level based on your level of strength. 

Materials and resistance

Pilates rings are typically made from flexible fiberglass covered by a molded rubber padding and additional plastic and foam pads for holding the ring in place. Some Pilates ring models include a steel core to increase durability. 


Pads enable a greater level of range and increase comfort during Pilates exercises by letting your arms or legs grip the inside of the ring while pressing outward or inward on it. 

When considering which Pilates ring to buy, aim for versatility and look for one with rings facing inside and outside to ensure you’re able to complete a wide range of exercises using it. Rings that only feature handles on the outside are more difficult to stabilize with pressure and less comfortable to hold during exercises that require you to push out on the ring from the inside. 

Tension level 

Pilates rings can be found in a number of levels of tension and resistance, typically indicated by labels like “light” or “firm.”

For an entry-level Pilates ring, you should select a standard ring with a normal level of tension. If you are working with an injury or need to build strength up slowly, look for rings that indicate low resistance. 

If you’ve been practicing Pilates for a while or are an athlete, you may benefit from selecting a ring with a higher tension level. 


The standard size for a Pilates ring is 14 inches. Shorter or smaller students can select a 12-inch ring to enable them to have a better range of motion. A taller or broader shouldered person may wish to select a 15-inch ring for a more comfortable workout.


You might wish to select a Pilates ring that comes with added accessories like workout guide pamphlets, Pilates DVDs, resistance bands and Pilates stability balls. These combinations are good for beginners who are still learning what they like. If you want to incorporate these supplemental materials into your workout, look for a Pilates ring that includes these accessories. 

How much you can expect to spend on a Pilates ring 

You don’t need to splurge to get a quality Pilates ring. A sturdy, high-quality ring costs $16-$30. More expensive options, for $35 and up, are typically designed to withstand years of use in a studio and are therefore more durable or offer added features like more resistance and weights. 

Pilates ring FAQ

How long will my Pilates ring last?

A. A standard-quality Pilates ring should retain its shape through multiple years of regular use. More expensive rings are designed for constant use in studios and should not break even over multiple years. 

How can I learn about Pilates exercises?

A.  The best way to learn Pilates exercises for the first time is to take a few classes in a studio and observe the instructor and your classmates. Pay attention to the feedback your instructor gives you on your form and posture. Once you’ve nailed the basic Pilates exercises, you can bring your workout to the mat in your own home. 

If you don’t wish to take a class in person, the next best thing is to either take a virtual class (offered by many studios) or watch Pilates videos on YouTube. Try mastering a beginner’s routine to build a strong foundation before moving on to more advanced workouts. 

What muscles do Pilates rings target?

A. Pilates rings are versatile Most pilates exercises are intended to target either your upper or lower body. If you wish to target a specific group of muscles, research Pilates rings exercises for that region. For example, if you wish to target your abs, look up a Pilates routine intended to target abs.

What’s the best Pilates ring to buy?

Top Pilates ring

Best Gaiam Pilates Ring 15-Inch Fitness Circle

Gaiam Pilates Ring 15-Inch Fitness Circle 

What you need to know: This  lightweight, versatile ring is ideal for use in a variety of Pilates mat and standing exercises. 

What you’ll love: It’s a highly portable, travel-friendly 14-inch ring with a moderate amount of tension. The ring includes non-slip grips.

What you should consider: Some users say its handles aren’t durable enough. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top Pilates ring for the money

ProBody Pilates Ring 

ProBody Pilates Ring 

What you need to know: This is ideal for users who need a smaller Pilates ring. It comes with a useful Pilates guide and carrying case.  

What you’ll love: This durable well-priced ring is a comfortable way to add resistance to your Pilates workout routine and target abs, thighs and legs. 

What you should consider: While ideal for shorter or smaller users, it may not be appropriate for very tall or broad-shouldered users. 

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Best AeroPilates Magic Circle Pilates Ring

AeroPilates Magic Circle Pilates Ring 

What you need to know: This steel core Pilates ring offers proven durability, moderate resistance and moderate weight. It comes with a DVD of Pilates exercises. 

What you’ll love: It’s similar to the rings used in Pilates studios, with a comfortable outer mold and handles. 

What you should consider: Some users say it doesn’t maintain its shape after a couple of years’ routine use.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

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Evelyn Waugh writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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