5 Pilates moves you should master

Pilates were those moves formulated to strengthen the core muscles.They focus on elongating and strengthening your bigger muscles and the deep intricate ones as well. This is why Pilates is so great for posture, core strength, muscle definition, circulation, sleep, energy, and … the list goes on!

Pilates can be done by everyone. And you don’t necessarily need equipment for doing them. Here are a few that don’t need any equipment and now you have no excuses to get fit.

Here are 5 moves that will boost your flexibility and tone your muscles:

5 Pilates moves you should master

  • Single leg circles

Lie down on a mat. Raise one leg straight up at a 90 degree angle with toes pointed towards the ceiling. Slowly trace a circle with your toes 5-6 times in one direction. Switch legs and repeat.

Do not make circles that go beyond the width of your hips.

  • Criss Cross

This is a great way tone your upper and lower abs simultaneously.

Move your knees into your chest. Curl your head and chest up and stack hands behind head with elbows wide to the side. Extend one leg out to 45 degrees.
Twist your body toward your bent leg, deepening abdominals. Switch legs and twist toward the other leg. Repeat 10 times.

  • Mermaid

Sit up tall with knees bent and legs stacked on top of each other. The hand closest to the legs wraps around the ankle; the other arm reaches up toward the ceiling resting against your ear.

Take a deep inhale and lift your spine up tall. Exhale; lengthen body out over legs. Inhale; draw body back upright. Exhale; deepen abdominals and sit even taller.

  • Plank

This is the most common Pilates exercise step that strengthens the core. Lie face down on the mat. Prop your body up on your forearms (elbows and fists shoulder-distance apart. Hold your tummy in while keeping your back straight. Hold for a minute or two. Don’t forget to breathe deeply while you are holding your position.

  • Abdominal chest press

Lie on your back with your knees into your chest. Curl your head and chest up and extend legs out to a 45-degree angle with arms out reaching straight by sides.

Begin pumping arms forward and back. Inhale for five counts, exhale for five counts. Repeat this 10 times.

Remember to keep your back and neck straight.