Freshly Centered

Pilates Inspired Living

The 5 Pilates challenge!

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It’s nearly Friday again! Do you find it hard to keep motivated over the weekend? I’ve made it really simple for you- here are 5 Pilates exercises to try!  It’s that simple! 10 minutes and a well exercised body covering core, glutes and upper body! Can you do this Friday, Saturday, & Sunday?! Happy weekend!

Before you start: In each position ensure you have a neutral spine (back is flat with no arching, no ribs flaring out and pelvis level). Engage your core by gently drawing in the core muscles in between the hip bones. Remember to breath with each movement! None of the exercises should be painful, and if in doubt, stop!

Each exercise 10 repetitions (except the Plank and Hundreds- hold them for 1 minute)

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1) Scissors: Raise 1 leg up to table top position (90 degrees), and as this leg returns back down to the mat, raise up the opposite leg. Keep a slow, steady pace and focus on the core engagement! Point the toes away from you and reach out with the foot for a longer lever and a more intense workout.

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2) Side kick: Raise your top leg up to hip height. Glide the knee forwards to approximately 90 degrees and then return. Aim for a smooth, steady leg that never touches the lower leg! Keep your trunk still.

Front plank

3) Plank: On elbows and toes. Rest on to your knees if your back strains. Draw shoulders away from ears and pull up through your stomach for a straight back. Hold it here! Keep holding! Even longer up to 1 minute!

Push up  

4) Press ups: On your knees or toes, whichever is more manageable. Draw shoulders down and tuck your tailbone under to engage your core. From your plank position, bend your elbows to lower the body down towards the mat, ensuring your back stays straight and the chest, hips and thighs all lower together. Press up strongly to the top again.

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5) Hundreds: With a neutral, flat spine, raise the legs to double table top (90 degrees). If that is too much today, keep one foot on the floor. Engage the core to bring you up at the head and shoulders- but no higher. Pulse the arms up and down (as if splashing puddles at your sides) while breathing in and out! Keep going! Stay here for 1 minute!

Repeat the circuit 3 times! 

Happy weekend with extra Pilates!

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