With all of the warm weather we’ve had lately, it feels like summer is already here! Where everyone seems concerned about getting a beach body, we encourage you to be concerned with having a strong healthy body, mind, and spirit all around. One of the best ways you can feel ready to start the summer off right is to start every day off with a few simple Pilates exercises. You can use these simple exercises to wake up your body, get ready to move and face your day. Whether you’re sore from yesterday’s class with Jennifer or just need a little morning energy boost, these exercises will help you say hello to summer the right way.
Bridging is one of the most common movements that we use in our classes. Start by lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Make sure your pelvis is neutral. Your feet should only be as wide as your sits bones–as if you have a tennis ball between your ankles. Imagine you’re lying on a sticky surface with a string tied around your tailbone. If somebody pulled that string, your body would come off the mat one vertebrae at a time, like someone slowly peeling a piece of gum off the floor.
To start bridging, exhale as you roll from a neutral pelvis through a posterior pelvic tilt.
Gradually lift your pelvis until your body forms a diagonal line from your knees through your hipbones all the way through your shoulders.Once you’re at the top of your bridge, take a breath in. On your next exhale, slowly roll back down placing one vertebrae at a time on the mat placing your tailbone down at the very last. Repeat 10 times.
If you want a little extra fun, try the same thing but lifting one foot at a time off the mat at the top of your bridge. You can even try tipping your pelvis from side to side.
*Please note if you have a bulging disk, herniated disk, or osteoporisis, do your bridging with a flat back as you raise and lower your hips in the bridge.
Hundreds are one of the most dreaded exercises in my class! They are simple and effective, a great ab exercise, and a great way to energize your body. Start in the same position you would for bridging. Curl your chin into your chest, and begin rolling one vertebrae at a time off the mat until your shoulder blades are off the ground. Be sure you’re keeping your pelvis in a neutral position.
Begin to pulse your arms up and down at your sides, inhaling for 5 pulses then exhaling for 5 pulses. To enhance the ab work, try doing it with your legs in tabletop position. For an even more exciting challenge, try the same exercises with you legs straightened out on a diagonal, about 45 degrees off the ground.
*Please note if you have osteoporosis, leave your head on the mat for this exercise as spinal flexion is contraindicated for this condition.
Keep checking back for more simple and effective exercises you can do at home!
Making better bodies,