Professional male athlete doing pilates

Baseball (MLB)

Professional Baseball players who do pilates

Jake Arrieta

“What I noticed from Pilates last year was that I have much better control of my body. I repeat my delivery consistently. My balance is much improved. And the mental and physical toughness Pilates requires to complete movements the correct way have directly helped me on the mound.”

Mark Canha

“Having a nice variety in your workout program, whether you’re doing Pilates or yoga, is good, just to kind of keep the body guessing, I think the more wide-range of things you do, the better off you’re going to be athletically.”

Aaron Judge

“Pilates—that’s something really that activates a lot of core. With the Yankees we have a couple Pilates machines at our training facility, so it just fits in. The biggest thing is just being able to stay flexible. If I’m flexible, loose, and I’ve got a strong core, I’ll usually be able to stay healthy and on the field.”

Chris Sale

“Pilates is an interesting thing for me and the reason I appreciate it is if I don’t feel good one day, I can go in and get like a flush workout, still sweat good. But if you feel good you can make it a hard workout, so it can be rejuvenating, but it can also crush you.”

Kolten Wong

“I love it. I’ve always been a guy who prides myself in being agile, and Pilates gives you the option of getting all the little muscles stretched out. I’m definitely a big advocate of it.”

Basketball (NBA)

Professional basketball players who do pilates

James Harden

“Harden, who joined Oscar Robertson as the only other player to average at least 29 points, 11 assists and eight rebounds per game in the regular season but also had a career-high usage rate of 34.1, looked tired at the end. So he added yoga and Pilates to his routine, focused on his rest and tweaked his diet.”

Lebron James

“In particular, the King says he enjoys versaclimber classes, which are popular in Los Angeles and essentially is a workout on a step climber. He also practices Pilates and enjoys spin classes. James says he’ll work out 5 days a week, even when he’s supposed to be resting up for the season, and often wakes up at 5 AM to exercise.”

Jason Kidd

“I don’t lift the big heavy 300-pound bench and all that anymore. I just try and keep a fine line of a little iron and a lot of the Pilates machine.”

*The link is to a 2005 article. It was included in this post because: 1. Jason Kidd! 2. It’s one of the better articles out there about an elite male professonal athlete’s close relationship with Pilates.

JJ Redick

“I have a foam roller and I alternate between foam rolling and doing Pilates moves. I do the Hundreds, I do some Rolling Like a Ball… abbreviated versions of the series of five. I kind of mix it all up.”

*Speaking on what he does to stay loose/activated for the moments he’s not on the court during games

Dwayne Wade

“I really felt the Pilates loosen up my muscles. I recall making a move, and the basketball ended up on my foot and I almost did a split on the ball. Normally, that’s a groin pull, but I bounced back.”

Football (NFL)

Professional Football athletes who do pilates

Martellus Bennett

“From the first time that I did it, it just made sense to me… Pilates has a way of finding your weakness and showing you what you need to be working on. I feel that a standard football workout uses the major, dynamic muscles, but not the smaller, supporting muscles that hold up the bigger ones. That’s where Pilates comes in for me.”

Antonio Brown

“Even more remarkable than his dynamic play this season is the fact that Brown doesn’t lift weights in the off-season. Instead, he incorporates Pilates workouts into his training. They have enhanced his core strength, developed explosive power in his hips and glutes and created muscle balance through strengthening and alignment.”

Bradley Chubb

“I’ve been doing Pilates a lot lately. I’ve been doing private sessions and all that. At the time, you’re like ‘I’m just doing body weight stuff – it’s not going to be hard at all.’ But then you actually end up sweating and struggling. So I feel that’s one thing that a lot of people wouldn’t expect me to be doing.”

Christian Covington

“This offseason I was introduced to Pilates and that’s really opened up my world with regards to hip mobility and flexibility, and my flexibility in general.”

Eric Ebron

“I was shaking really bad — my legs, my core, my whole body was shaking really bad. That’s all I can remember. And I could not stop sweating to save my life.”

*Speaking about his first Pilates session

Hockey (NHL)

NHL Players who do pilates

Phillip Danault

“I take it seriously. It helps to heal my mind. It’s a great way to be strong and stay focused at the same time. I wish I knew Pilates before. I feel very good.”

Auston Matthews

“I focused a lot on body posture this summer. I started doing Pilates, just kind of opening myself up more a bit, being more upright and avoiding other injuries. I think I’m more flexible. …I feel good and I’m pretty excited to get going.”

Tyler Seguin

“I’m really into Pilates and yoga in the summer. I think it’s helped with my flexibility and helped me not to get injured. Yoga, Pilates, and stretching go a long way for guys. And there are a ton of guys doing it right now—it’s really picked up.”

Lee Stempniak

“Pilates was part of a revamped off-season routine that helped Stempniak progress from a precarious professional tryout to leading the Devils in scoring with perhaps the finest season of his 10-year career.”

Cam Ward

“He has started doing Pilates as a way to keep his back strong and healthy after it cost him a large chunk of last season.”

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