Trying Pilates Moves On A Rowing Machine Is A Genius TikTok Hack

No Reformer? No problem!

Olivia Rodriguez/TikTok/Elite Daily

When content creator Olivia Rodriguez (@hellooliviablog) shared a TikTok of her doing Pilates moves on a rowing machine at her gym, she had no idea it would go viral. “I could not believe it. I was in absolute shock,” Rodriguez tells Elite Daily. “I uploaded the video and closed the app, thinking it would flop.” A few hours later, her best friend started blowing up her phone, telling her she was going viral. With how expensive some Pilates Reformer machines are, it makes sense that TikTokers are looking for hacks to recreate the experience in a budget-friendly way, and Rodriguez is sharing all the best Pilates moves to do on a rowing machine.

“I saw one of the trainers at my gym using the rowing machine and the movement of it reminded me so much of a Reformer,” Rodriguez told Elite Daily about what gave her the idea. “It was like a light bulb went off in my head. The next day when the gym was completely empty, I pulled it out and just started building my own little Reformer with the equipment around me.” While she says the big difference is that there is “no resistance,” this can actually be beneficial. “The beauty of it is, without resistance, it forces you to rely more on your strength and tightening up every muscle,” she said. Another major plus is that rowing machines are easily found at almost any gym. All you need is the right moves to practice, and Rodriguez shared seven Pilates exercises you can easily do on a rowing machine.

Side Split
Olivia Rodriguez

The first move Rodriguez demonstrates in her viral TikTok video is a side split with a rowing machine. With one knee on the apparatus and the other standing firm on the floor, she moves her leg on the rowing machine out and holds before coming back in. You want to engage your core to really feel a burn from this exercise. Rodriguez says she does 10 reps of each move with “three rounds of slow and controlled movement.”

Olivia Rodriguez

“Doing a movement like a pike is unmatched and so challenging,” Rodriguez said. Her favorite Pilates moves to do with a rowing machine are the ones “that work out your core,” and this is one that she loves. To perform a Pike with a rowing machine, bring a block over and start in a plank position with your arms on the block and feet on the rowing machine. Bring your legs in towards you so that your body forms an upside down V shape.

Bear Plank
Olivia Rodriguez

Another Pilates move that begins in a plank position is this bear exercise, or a tabletop. From your plank with your arms shoulder-width apart on the block and feet on the rowing machine, bring your legs into a tabletop position. Keep your back flat and in line with your neck.

Twist Crunch
Olivia Rodriguez

A twist crunch is easy to do with a rowing machine as well. Just begin in the same plank position with your feet on the machine, and slightly twist your body to one side. Bring your legs in like you did in the bear plank, and feel the burn in your abs. This is a great core workout. Just remember to repeat on the other side with 10 reps each.

Olivia Rodriguez

Flip around so that your arms are on the rowing machine and your legs are on the block for your next Pilates move. Begin with your knees down on the block from your plank position. As you inhale, slowly extend your arms out in front of you. Rodriguez does this exercise with her elbows down on the rowing machine, but you can also do this with your hands down if that’s easier. Once you return to your starting plank position, repeat for about 10 reps.

Skater Lunge
Olivia Rodriguez

Grab some dumbbells to deepen your skater lunge stretch, like Rodriguez does. With one leg firmly on your block, push out the other leg while in a squat position. As your leg is extending out, bring your arms in for a hammer curl. After about 10 reps, switch to the other leg. Rodriguez does another variation of the skater lunge, but with bicep curls. This is perfect for a full body workout of your arms, legs, and core.

Olivia Rodriguez

To “lift your booty,” try this hamstrings Pilates workout with a rowing machine. With your shoulders and head on the floor and feet on the rowing machine, lift up your booty into a tabletop position. Keep your arms straight on the floor underneath you for balance. While you can always just hold here for a quick burn, you can get more of a hamstrings workout by extending your legs out and bringing them back in to your starting position for about 10 reps.