Move over, hot yoga, and make room for Hot Pilates.

Though it may seem like the latest trend, Hot Pilates has been around and growing since 2009.

Gabriella Walters, a former competitive athlete, developed Hot Pilates to provide a cardio element and intensity in a low impact workout. She founded Inferno Hot Pilates in Las Vegas in 2009 and has been teaching her method around the world.

If you love to sweat, love the heat, and are considering a new hot workout, read on to learn more about Hot Pilates.

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Hot Pilates is a challenging full-body workout using the Pilates principles. Its high intensity, low impact format is designed to strengthen muscles without the pounding of high impact workouts.

Of course, as the name suggests, it’s taught in a hot space and it’s going to make you sweat — a lot. The room is heated to 95°F (35°C) and set at 40% humidity.

While every instructor and class will differ, this isn’t a traditional or typical Pilates class. You won’t see exercises like the Hundred, Rolling Like a Ball, One-Leg Circle, or Saw.

Hot Pilates uses a lot of variations and repetitions of Pilates core- and back-strengthening exercises alongside a variety of squats, lunges, and mountain climbers.

The high intensity component comes from integrating high intensity interval training (HIIT) into the workout.

If you enjoy a tough workout and tremendous sweating, the number-one benefit will likely be how it improves your mood. Moving to high energy music in a fun setting is a surefire way to ease stress and boost morale.

While there are no studies specifically about Hot Pilates, there is significant research on the benefits of Pilates, strength training, HIIT workouts, and exercise in general.

Research has shown that Pilates can improve quality of life through improvements in strength, balance, flexibility, mobility, and injury prevention (1, 2, 3, 4).

Strength training and HIIT workouts can build muscle mass to support your body’s structure and daily activities. They have been shown to be effective in increasing metabolic rate and burning fat (5, 6, 7, 8).

Doing any type of exercise in a hot environment increases your risk of heat exhaustion and dehydration.

These risks are significantly higher for older adults and people with heart conditions or neurological conditions that hinder the ability to sweat (9, 10).

Exercising in the heat places more load on your cardiovascular system. Your heart rate will be higher because it takes more energy for your body to cool itself down.

If you’re new to exercising in the heat, it’s important to pace yourself and stay well hydrated. It’s a good idea to become familiar with the techniques of Pilates, strength training, and HIIT classes before trying Hot Pilates.

The idea that excessive sweating equals weight loss relates to loss of water rather than burning calories or fat.

Currently, there’s no data specifically on the amount of fat or calories burned in a Hot Pilates class as compared to other types of workouts.

However, Hot Pilates does utilize principles of HIIT and is performed in a heated environment.

Research does support the idea of higher levels of calorie burn during HIIT workouts and increased metabolic rate for hours after exercise (8, 11, 12, 13, 14).

If you don’t do well in the heat or you dread summer, you might want to pass on Hot Pilates.

If you have any type of heart condition or high or low blood pressure, it’s best to avoid exercising in extremely hot environments.

During pregnancy, your body’s blood volume increases and your heart works harder than ever. Overheating is a health risk, and you should avoid engaging in exercise such as Hot Pilates for long periods (15).

It’s always advisable to consult a healthcare professional before starting a new fitness program.

Hot Pilates classes will differ according to each instructor’s training and style.

Classes are typically 45–60 minutes long and are set to high energy music while keeping a consistent rhythm and a moderate-to-fast pace.

All you’ll need is a mat, your body, water to stay hydrated, and a towel. Some instructors may use weights or other small props such as magic circles and mini resistance bands.

Dress comfortably, knowing that your clothing will get sticky and wet.

Most Hot Pilates classes follow a structure of starting with bridge exercises on the mat and moving on to focused core work, side body work, back extension exercises, and then standing work. The standing portion focuses on legs and upper body as the main cardio component.

Hot Pilates is a high energy, high intensity, low impact fitness class that uses Pilates principles in room heated to 95°F (35°C).

If you love a tough workout, like the heat, and enjoy sweating, this may be a fun workout to try.

Remember to consult a healthcare professional before starting a new fitness program and, most importantly, to stay hydrated.