While it looks like people are just stretching and rolling around on exercise mats, the discipline is actually quite difficult. This particular class is suitable for beginners, but the teacher also gives trickier options to advanced students in the room who are keen to really push themselves.

The exercises are designed to strengthen the core muscles, and allow you to stand up straight. The movements also help with flexibility, strength and endurance, so you really do feel the effects quickly. The moves also have hilarious names like “monkey squat”, so if you can’t nail the positions perfectly, you can at least have a giggle about them.

Pilates is not designed for weight loss, so if you’re trying to work off the Christmas carbs, go for something that will get your heart racing. You’re more likely to feel the effects of this class the next day, rather than while your doing it. If you want to be able to bend without breaking, don your tracksuit and you’ll be able to put your leg over your head in no time! 

Classes are £7.60 each and on Tuesday nights between 8pm-9pm.
Clissold Leisure Centre, Stoke Newington

Photo: Getty images