Pilates Exercises That Work Your Core

One of the things and most important things you can do to gain overall fitness is to strengthen your core. The core includes your lower back, obliques, and abs. A strong core helps the body keep stable and balanced, allows you to maintain accurate exercise form and posture, keeps the spine safe and stable, and overall supports your gait so that you are able to move in a more efficient and controlled manner. There are so many ways to work your core but including Pilates in your every day workout routine lets you engage your core in a new way- as after a period of time, everyone gets tired of doing planks. 

Pilates moves are a mind-body workout which targets your core. Even if you are performing a move which targets other muscles, your core is still engaged. It works on the abdominal on superficial as well as deep levels to gain true core strength. The best part is you don’t need any type of equipment to perform these exercises. 

The Pilates Exercises are:

1. Leg Circle

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Bend your right leg and keep your foot flat on the ground. Raise your left leg straight.
  • Make a circle with your straight leg and then take it to the initial position.
  • Try to make the circle as big as you can but don’t lift your lower back from the ground.
  • Repeat the same with the other leg.

2. Single Leg Stretch

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Bend both the legs. Bring both the knees towards your chest.
  • Keep your hands on the shins and lift your head and upper back up from the floor. Straight one leg and do it alternatively on both the legs.
  • Don’t lift your lower back and keep your core engaged throughout.

3. Double Leg Stretch

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Bend both the legs. Bring both the knees towards your chest.
  • Curl your head and keep your hands on your knees.
  • Then take your arms overhead and extend your legs.
  • Don’t lift your lower back and try to straighten your legs as much as you can.

4. Teaser

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Bend both the legs. Bring both the knees over your hips.
  • Lift your feet from the ground.
  • Straighten your legs in the air and try to touch your feet with your hands.
  • While doing this, try to make a V with your upper body and legs.
  • Hold for 5 seconds and then come to your starting position.

5. Plank Leg Lift

  • Begin in a high plank by keeping your hands exactly under your shoulders.
  • Lift one leg as high as high as you can but don’t take it beyond the shoulder’s height.
  • Perform this on alternative legs.
  • Avoid rocking your hips by engaging your quads, butts and core.

6. Slow Motion Mountain Climber

  • Begin in a high plank by keeping your hands exactly under your shoulders.
  • Bring your right knee towards your chest. Take it back and then bring your left towards your chest.
  • Avoid rocking your hips by engaging your quads, butts and core.

7. The One Hundred

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Lift both the legs off the ground and lower them midway.
  • This will make an angle.
  • Curl your head. Place your arms o the sides with palms down.
  • Taps your arms on the sides while inhaling for 5 seconds and exhaling for 5 seconds.
  • Repeat this breathing pattern 10 times.

8. Criss-Cross

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Bend both the legs. Bring both the knees towards your chest.
  • Keep your hands behind your head and keep your elbows wide. 
  • Curl your head upwards.
  • Bring your right shoulder towards your left knee while extending your right leg.
  • Repeat the same with other shoulder and knee.

9. Scissors Kick

  • Lie down on your back.
  • Lift your left leg straight so that it makes a perpendicular to the ground. 
  • Curl your head upwards and pull your left leg towards your face.
  • While doing this, keep your right leg few inches above the ground.
  • Switch the legs.

10. Pendulum

  • Lie down on your back. Place your arms on your sides.
  • Bend your knees over the hips.
  • Lift your feet off the ground.
  • Make both knees fall on the left side. Come in the initial position.
  • Repeat the same on the right side.

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