Here are two Pilates moves that will work your core and improve stability. It’s always good to have a couple of exercises for your abs that you can do at home when you’re short on time. Vivian from The VIVA Group – Pilates & Wellness talks us through how to do them!
- Lay down on the mat with your knees bent at hip-distance apart; arms should be to the side of your hips and fingertips skimming your heels.
- Contract your abdominals and glutes; then, lift your hips up towards the ceiling, creating a long line from the shoulders to knees. Squeeze your glutes to lift your hips higher, while maintaining the connection with your abdominals.
- Using your glutes to keep your hips high and level, lift your left leg up to table-top position and then reach your toes up towards the ceiling, straightening your leg, and lengthening it through your hamstrings.
- Flex your ankle, reaching your heel away. Then lower your leg to the height of your other knee without losing the connection through your glutes, hamstrings and abdominals, and keeping your hips up.
- Lift your leg up, reaching your toes towards the ceiling, and repeat the lower and lift motion twice more.
- Bend your knee back to table-top position, lower your feet to the mat, squeeze your glutes and abs to lift your hips higher (that’s one rep!). Then switch legs. Repeat two or three repetitions on each side.
Alternating Leg & Arm Extensions
- Kneel on the mat on all fours; hands should be shoulder-distance apart and under your shoulders, and knees should be hip-distance apart, below your hips. Be sure to maintain equal weight on your hands and knees. Slide your shoulder blades down to activate your shoulder blade stabilisers and contract your abdominals to maintain your stability.
- Keeping your hips level, reach your right arm forward and your left leg backward.Squeeze your glutes to keep your leg lifted, and point your toes away from your sit bones to create length through your leg.Contract your abdominals to maintain stability and to avoid arching your back.
- Lower your arm and leg back to starting position. Then, switch sides. Repeat five to 10 repetitions. Tip: Focus on maintaining your weight at the centre of your body – your shoulders away from your ears, your neck long and hips square, looking down at the mat