Footsteps into Pilates – THREE Taster Video Classes!

Footsteps into Pilates – (for strength, balance, flexibility and wellbeing)
THREE Pilates Classes FREE to try again and again
With Physiotherapist and Pilates teacher Zoe Rex


This is a web based course which culminated in a live event on 13th July, the recording of which is included. Learn about Pilates and try it out as often as you please.
These classes are suitable for most abilities.
zoe standing in a white tshirt and colourful trousers on a beach

Zoe Rex is a Physiotherapist and Pilates Instructor who has used Pilates to great effect in her work with people with persistent pain. We are delighted that she is donating her expertise for the Footsteps Festival 2021 to give a taste of what and why Pilates can be so helpful for people who live with pain.

It can be hard to find a good place to start when you are looking to get back into exercise or if you have been advised to try Pilates as a way of helping to manage pain and you often need a stepping stone to further movement or exercise.

This is something the Footsteps Festival is determined to provide – trusted, good quality taster sessions so you can decide what suits you and your level of need and what is available out there to try and do. So often we meet barriers that mean it’s so much harder to get going when it should be simple. It is also easy to have preconceived ideas about the different types of movement classes available.

Pilates – Not Just the Core!

Pilates is not just about the core – it includes work on flexibility, balance, strength, and getting the body gently moving. The breath and breathing is also very important and fundamental to Pilates – when you are in pain you will often hold your breath as an automatic protective response, but this is like driving with the brakes on for the body and mind. Pilates helps you to recognise and retrain the breathing which can have huge benefits.

Zoe comes to us not just as a highly qualified professional but as a person who herself has experienced back pain. In fact that is how she first came to find Pilates and its benefits. She was injured at work as a newly qualified physiotherapist but finds that her experience has informed both her career and how she treats her patients and clients.

She has worked in NHS pain management services but also runs her own business teaching Pilates because she realised that there was very little available for people who were recovering from injury or who had graduated from a Pain Management Programme.

Zoe’s style of teaching and ethos ensures that it is all about starting at the level that feels right for you and gradually building up. Taking it at your own pace and your own time. Encouraging you to build movement into your life, taking little steps to build your confidence, strength and flexibility in a way that feels right for you.

We have a series of videos which you can access and two special pre-recorded sessions to get you started with simple Pilates concepts and exercises, which built up to Zoe’s live session on the 13th July 7.30pm –the video of which is also below. Please do check out Zoe’s other resources which are linked below.

Please read the disclaimer below.

“Physical exercise, in all of its forms, can carry the risk of injury. You are therefore advised to seek the advice of your GP or Health Professional before beginning any physical exercise program, including our videos and resources.
Please work at your own level, rest when you need to and build up gradually.
You understand that it is your responsibility to judge your physical and mental capabilities for such activities and that you do not exceed your limits while performing the exercises.”

Find Zoe online here:

Pilates Health Online

Facebook page here

YouTube Channel here



Video introduction from Zoe Rex – Physiotherapist and Pilates Teacher

How to get on the floor

If you were worried that Pilates means getting on the floor, in this video Zoe shows how to do this safely using a dining room chair – this is a useful thing to know how to do even if you don’t want to use a mat or floor for Pilates, as it means you know how to safely get up from the floor if you find yourself down there for any other reason.

You can do Pilates on a bed if you really need to, but it should be a firm surface (and remove the duvet). This is because if you sink down into the mattress you lose the natural neutral position and your muscles actually have to work harder to maintain that position or adjust for that. Thus if you are able to get onto the floor with a mat or blanket it is actually safer and easier for you.

Tips on how to get comfy on the floor

What can you use instead of a mat – something soft but not too thick, a blanket or big towel is ideal. It’s best to have it only under your spine as this stops the blanket ruching up under your legs. Use a folded towel to give support for your head; it can be folded to the desired height. This helps you maintain and support the natural neutral position.

A to Z of Pilates – A

This is really good place to start to understand what Pilates can be about – a series of videos that Zoe is making for her YouTube channel – “A” is seen below and you can see the whole series in a playlist below that.


A to Z of Pilates – The Playlist (plays all the available videos one after the other or so you can choose what to watch)



Next are some specially recorded “Taster classes” for the Footsteps Festival which you can do along with the video of the live class below.

Taster Class One – 25 minutes, slow, easy warm up and low level Pilates – suitable for all

Taster Class Two – 38 minutes – gentle warm up and some more challenging work but still suitable for most abilities

Work at your own pace and have a go!


Class Three – The Live Class

One hour including a Question and Answer session – the class is in three parts, warm up, standing work, prone work and stretches.


A to Z of Pilates – L is for Low Back Pain

This is another one of Zoe’s great A to Z videos that deserves its own link – this one is about Low Back Pain and will be of interest to many of you.


Follow us on social media


Help keep Footsteps Festival free

Can we ask a favour? If you find value in any of the Footsteps Festival events, a small “pay as you feel” donation would be gratefully received – this means we can keep it free to access.

Pay as you feel donation

Back to Active Zone