We are often asked for some pilates sample
exercises, and we are also asked about pilates ball exercises. Pilates is a
great form of exercise, combining gentle movements with rhythmic breathing. It
is similar to yoga, but involves more movement. We’ve put together a few
pilates sample exercises, including pilates ball exercises, for you to get a
feel for it.
The pilates pelvic tilt is a good exercise to start
with. Pay attention to the breathing as you do the movements.
Pilates Pelvic Tilt
Lie on your back with your knees bent and your
feet flat on the floor. Align your feet, ankles, knees, and hips.
This exercise begins in the neutral spine
position. In the neutral spine position, the natural curves of the
spine are present, so the lower back is not pressed against the
Breathe out. As you breathe out, use your
abdominal muscles and pull your belly button down toward your
spine. The abs should press the lower spine against the floor.
Breathe in. As you breathe in, press down with
your feet, allowing the tailbone to begin to curve up toward the
ceiling. The hips lift, then the lower spine, then the middle
spine. You will come to rest on your shoulders at the level of your
shoulder blades, with a straight line from your shoulders to your
hips. Do not arch beyond this point. Be sure to support this
movement with the abdominal muscles and thigh muscles.
Breathe out. As you exhale, begin with the
upper back and unroll the spine back down to the floor, vertebrae by
vertebrae, until the lower spine settles to the floor.
Breathe in. Relax into the neutral spine
Another good pilates exercise to try is the spine
stretch. Again, remember to pay attention to your breathing.
Sit up tall with your legs out in front of you
about shoulder width apart.
Breathe in. As you breathe in, stretch your
arms out in front of you at shoulder height.
Breathe out. As you breathe out, stretch your
spine to curve forward into a “C” curve. Reach your fingers toward
Breathe in. As you breathe in, reach a little
Breathe out. As you breathe out, slowly
straighten the spine to a sitting position.
As you practice these pilates sample exercises, pay
attention to the breathing that goes along with the movements. The
breathing is as important to the pilates sample exercises as the
Pilates ball exercises are a great way to add
variety to your pilates exercise routine. Exercise balls can be
purchased online or at stores that sell exercise equipment.
Here is a sample pilates exercise using a ball.
Lie face down on the ball with the ball under
your hips. Your hands should be flat on the floor.
Walk your hands forward until your mid-thighs
are resting on the ball. To make the exercise more challenging,
walk your hands forward until your knees are resting on the ball.
You should be in a straight line from head to toe.
From there, shift your weight back and forth,
moving only at the shoulders.
Breathe deeply and rhythmically as you perform
the pilates ball exercises.
We hope you enjoy these pilates exercises. You can
find more pilates sample exercises and pilates ball exercises online,
but the best way to learn is to take a class with a qualified
instructor. The instructor can show you the proper form and demonstrate
the exercises for you.
beginning a new exercise routine, be sure to speak with your doctor to
make sure the exercise program is right for you.
More than pilates sample exercises on our benefits of exercise page
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