Pilates Inspired At Home Core Workout

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With it being the start of a new year, we know how busy life can be. We also know that although we have ambitious intentions, sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day to do all the things we wish to do! And sometimes, although you may want to get to your favourite Pilates class, a meeting gets put into your diary over lunch and you can’t quite make it. So, despite the various hurdles than can come in between you and your Pilates fix, we want to help you to keep moving if you’ve got one of those busy days and only have a spare 10-15 minutes to yourself. 

Zoe-Maia, has created a short step-by-step Pilates based core workout for you that you can practice in the comfort of your own home - you don’t need any equipment, all you need is yourself, your mat and a love for Pilates. 

SINGLE LEG STRETCH

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Lie on your back with both knees into your chest. Keep your left knee towards your chest, placing the right hand on the inside of the left knee. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off the mat and place your left hand on the outside of your left ankle.

Stay lifted with your chest (to the base of your shoulder blades) as you extend your right leg, keeping the leg extended as low as you can whilst keeping the lower back stable.

Inhale with your left knee into your chest whilst sinking your abdominals to the mat and as you exhale, switch legs, bringing the right knee to your chest (left hand on inside of left knee, right hand on outside of right ankle) whilst extending the left leg. See image for this position.

Stay lifted with your head, neck and shoulders the entire time, looking forward, sinking the abdominals, keeping the torso steady and elbows wide. Repeat 8-12 full sets.

DOUBLE LEG STRETCH

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Lie on your back with both knees into your chest. Lift the head, neck and shoulders off the mat so your upper body is rounded off the mat, placing your hands on the outside of your ankles (right hand on outside of right ankle, left hand on outside of left ankle). Keep looking forward, with your gaze towards your knees as they are into your chest.

Inhale and whilst you keep the head, neck and shoulders lifted off the mat, extend your legs out as low as you can without arching the lower back, keeping inner thighs and ankles together. At the same time, extend your arms overhead to the ceiling or behind you without dropping the upper body or changing the position of your lower back. See image for this position.

As you exhale, circle the arms around by your sides to place the hands back on the outside of your ankles. Keep the head, neck and shoulders lifted up throughout. Repeat 4-6 times.

SINGLE STRAIGHT LEG STRETCH

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Start lying on your back with your legs extended to the ceiling, as straight as possible, toes pointed. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off the mat so you’re lifted to the base of your shoulder blades and depending on your level of flexibility, hold onto the back of your left calf, ankle or left thigh, just not behind the knee, keeping your elbows wide.

At the same time, extend your right leg out straight as low as you can go whilst keeping the lower back stable and not disturbing the stability of your pelvis. Inhale and engage the abdominals, pulsing the left leg with a short inhale to your centre for x2 counts (keeping the leg as straight as possible). As you exhale, switch legs, bringing the right leg towards you and extending the left leg out. See image for this position.

Keep the torso steady, low back in place, shoulders away from the ears and stay lifted with the upper body

If you’re looking to stay at a hotel, head to The Slow (pictured above). The project of fashion designer George

throughout. Repeat 8-12 full sets.

DOUBLE STRAIGHT LEG STRETCH

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Start lying on your back with your hands behind your head, elbows wide and your legs reaching up to the ceiling. Lifting your head, neck and shoulders off the mat to the base of your shoulder blades whilst keeping the head pressing into the hands to avoid pulling on the head/neck. Keep a space for a small orange between the chin and your chest.

Inhale with the legs to the ceiling and as you exhale, engage your abdominals and slowly lower the legs towards the mat only as far as you can go without arching the lower back, disturbing the stability of the pelvis or flaring the ribs. See image for this position.

Inhale as you slowly lift your legs back to the starting position, keeping your lower back stable, abdominals engaged and your head, neck and shoulders lifted off the mat. Try to lower the leg for counts of 5, then lift back up towards the ceiling for counts of 5. Repeat 4-6 times.

CRISS CROSS

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Lie on your back with both knees into your chest. Place your hands behind your head, keeping elbows wide and space for a small orange between your chin and chest. Lift your head, neck and shoulders off the mat to the base of your shoulder blades.

Keep your left knee towards your chest whilst extending your right leg out. Keeping your torso stable, bring your right elbow/armpit towards your left knee, looking past the left knee with your gaze. Switch sides, extending the left leg out, bringing the right knee towards your chest and bringing your left elbow/armpit towards your right knee, as you look past the right knee. See image for this position.

Try to keep the upper body lifted as you twist to each side without dropping the head, neck and shoulders. Repeat 8-12 full sets.

WORDS BY ZOE-MAIA X

INSTAGRAM / @MAIA.WELLCO

WEBSITE / WWW.MAIAWELLCO.COM

Rebecca DaviesComment