Fitness

Recalibrate Your Body with Pilates

How often do listen to your body? Is it trying to tell you that something is amiss and needs to be addressed?
With Pilates, you will learn to listen to and respect your body before those warning signs shout out your discomfort! Pilates is all about moving efficiently while learning correct posture. Good alignment allows the head and neck to move freely with relaxed shoulders and relieves stress on the hips, legs and feet.

Single Leg Stretch/Hands on the Knee

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This is the most basic torso stability exercise of the Pilates method. The challenge begins when reaching out one leg at a time without moving the torso. This is an abdominal exercise not a neck exercise. Do not lose abdominal engagement, and a maintain stable position with the feet at the same height throughout.

Establish position:

Lying supine, place legs in the table top position (90 degree knees and hips), knees bent, with one hand on the knee and the other on the heel. Keep the lower back on the mat and gently roll your head and shoulders up so you are looking at the thighs.

  • Inhale: No movement
  • Exhale: Straighten one leg, hand on the bended knee
  • Inhale: Switch the leg
  • Exhale: Straighten the other leg

Repeat 5-8 times on each leg

Criss Cross

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This exercise builds abdominal strength with emphasis on the obliques. It also teaches how to rotate the trunk through the waist area. Keep feet at the same height throughout. Maintain a stable position with the height of the feet eye-level throughout.

Establish position:

Lying supine, place legs in the table top position (90 degree knees and hips). Interlace the fingers and place behind the head without pulling. Keep the lower back on the mat and gently roll your head and shoulders up so you are looking at the thighs.

  • Exhale: Rotate on the side with wide open elbows toward the bent knee, other leg straightens
  • Inhale: Return to center and change the leg
  • Exhale: Rotate on opposite side with wide open elbows toward the bent knee, other leg straightens
  • Inhale: Return to center and change the leg

Repeat 5-8 times on each leg.

Neck Roll

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This is a very good exercise to release any tension in the neck muscles.

Establish position:

Set a neutral spine position.

  • Inhale: Take a deep breath
  • Exhale: Gently roll head to the side
  • Inhale: Repeat on the other side
  • Exhale: Return to center

Repeat 3-5 times

Head Nod

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This exercise demonstrates how to find the correct position for the head and neck so there is no straining the neck when curling up off the floor.

Establish position:

Set a neutral spine position.

  • Inhale: Take a deep breath
  • Exhale: Lengthening through the back of the neck, slightly dropping the chin
  • Inhale: Take a deep breath and return to neutral position
  • Exhale: Tilt the head back in a small move
  • Inhale: Return to center

Repeat 3-5 times