- A Pilates bar challenges and tones the body in dynamic ways, and especially helps strengthen the core.
- Our top choice is the Gaiam Restore Pilates Bar for its quality and functionality.
- We’ve also included options for beginners, those on the go, and more.
- Read more: The best yoga mats
Pilates was first developed in the 1920s as a low-impact form of exercise specifically designed to strengthen the core, as well as other muscles in the body, and promote postural alignment. As a Pilates instructor, it’s my job to challenge clients in each and every session. Adding equipment to the workout is one way to ramp up the intensity and add new and creative movements. Pilates bars are great tools that can further target the core and work the body in dynamic ways. Lightweight, portable, and with bands for added resistance, the bars will add a strengthening element to your Pilates workout that can help better define your muscles.
Here are the best Pilates bars
- Best overall: Gaiam Restore Pilates Bar
- Best on a budget: BQYPOWER Pilates Bar Kit
- Best for beginners: Viajero Pilates Bar Kit
- Best for strength training: Cretee Pilates Bar
- Best portable: NoviFit Pilates Bar Complete Kit with Carry Bag
- Best for added value: CHAMPYA Pilates Bar
The Gaiam Restore Pilates Bar is a high-quality piece of equipment to practice reformer-style movements.
What we like: Quality, ease of set up, digital workouts included
This polished and robust Pilates bar has been thoughtfully designed to help you build a strong core, while also increasing flexibility and improving balance. It features two, 30-inch Power Cords and attached foot straps, plus downloadable exercise workouts that guide you through essential Pilates bar movements with proper technique and form. The intensity can be increased simply by rolling the bands around the bar to generate greater resistance. Weighing just two pounds, this lightweight bar is designed for you to flow between reformer-style exercises with grace and ease.
Best on a budget
The BQYPOWER Pilates Bar Kit is an affordable option that doesn’t sacrifice quality.
What we like: Price, multi-use, straps hold their stretch
For those on a budget, the BQYPOWER Pilates Bar Kit delivers on all fronts without neglecting quality. The strong steel bar is protected with sweat-absorbing foam pads for comfort as you maintain optimum postural alignment, and the straps are made with TPR (thermoplastic rubber) elastic tubes which help them keep their stretch, even after continued use. As a bonus, the kit includes an eight-character tensioner, useful for both strengthening and stretching purposes.
Best for beginners
The Viajero bar is flexible in resistance and comes with a guided e-book for beginners to learn proper technique.
What we like: Durable, portable, exercise guide included
For beginners, the Viajero bar is an effective addition for your workouts. You can adjust the resistance by simply rolling the tubes around the bar, which is useful for alternating between strength exercises. The bar splits into three sections for easy transport and has two attachable natural latex resistance bands (up to 50 lbs) that can stretch six to 10 times in length without losing resilience. The bar also comes with a handy workout e-book and video to teach you proper form and movement patterns.
Best for strength training
Adjustable between 60-180 pounds, the Cretee Pilates Bar is best for those who want to build strength.
What we like: Multi-functional, height adaptable, up to 180 pounds of resistance
The Cretee Pilates Bar comes with six bands, varying in resistance from 60 to 180 pounds, with the strap length adjustable depending on your height and the exercise. The bands are made from durable natural latex and can withstand daily exercise sessions without losing elasticity. As a multi-functional bar, the resistance can be reduced for Pilates and more stabilizing-focussed workouts, or increased to challenge the muscles in a strength-training session.
The NoviFit Pilates Bar is the best portable option for those working out on the go.
What we like: Adjustable, comes with a carry bag and training guide
The anti-slip NoviFit Pilates Bar has adjustable bands to change both height and resistance, making it suitable for all heights and fitness levels. It also features widening, non-slip foot belts and thick resistance bands for lasting durability. The bar folds up to a compact 19 inches and comes with a cooling towel and waterproof storage bag for workouts on the go. As a bonus, the included workout guide offers a selection of exercises for the entire body.
Best for added value
With additional straps and a follow-along workout app, the CHAMPYA Pilates Bar offers nice extras.
What we like: Adjustable, sturdy nylon handles, fitness app included
The bar is made from durable materials, including a three-part stick made from sturdy steel, a thick foam exterior, and tough nylon handles to withstand up to 40 pounds of resistance. The adjustable knobs allow you to change the height as desired, and there are two additional foot straps that can be connected for workout variation. Included is access to the Champya App, with a follow-along guide teaching you how to properly stretch, strengthen, and sculpt.