Pilates exercises for building core strength and balance

8 Simple Pilates Postures for Core Strength and Balance

Pilates is a low-impact great full-body workout suitable for many different fitness levels. As an addition to your exercise routine, it can help improve your posture, core strength, flexibility and balance. The exercises below only require your mat.

It’s important to use lateral breathing, directing your breath to your rib cage rather than your belly, and practice each posture with focused attention and control. Key points to note are keeping your abdominal muscles pulled up and in as you inhale and enter the pose, and exhaling as you release.

 

Knees Side to Side

– Lie face up with your arms extended by your side and bent knees.
– Whilst keeping your lower back and feet on the floor, slowly lower both knees to your right side.
– Repeat the same to the left.
– Repeat the sequence 10-15 times altogether.
 

 

Pendulum

– Bend knees at a right angle over your hips with your feet hovering above the mat.
– Lower both knees fall to the right, keeping your lower back on the floor.
– Repeat the same to the left.
– Repeat the sequence 10-15 times altogether.

 

 

 

Pelvic Tilt

– Lie face up with your back flat against the floor and your arms by your sides, palms down.
– Tighten your abdominal muscles and tilt your pelvis up slightly so your bum is lifted above the mat.
– Hold for up to 10 seconds. Repeat 10-15 times.

 

 

 

Single Leg Heel Slide

– Lie face up with your arms by your sides, palms down.
– Bend your left knee and place your left foot flat on the floor.
– Slowly extend your right leg keeping it slightly above the mat and perpendicular to the floor.
– Repeat 10-15 times
– Repeat on the other leg

 

 

 

Clam

– Lie on your side with your hips and shoulders in a straight line.
– Bend your knees so that your thighs are at a 90-degree angle to your body.
– Keep your feet together as you slowly rotate your leg in the hip socket and raise your knee
– Bring your knee back to the start position.
– Repeat the clam 10-15 times, then change sides.

 

 

 

Side Lying Leg Lift

– Lie on your side with your hips and shoulders in a straight line.
– Bend the knee resting on the mat and extend your other leg up so that it’s perpendicular to the floor.
– Slowly lift the extended leg up and down.
– Repeat 10 – 15 times, then change sides.

 

 

 

Dead Bugs

– Lie face up.
– Inhale, lift your hands straight with elbows above your shoulders.
– Lift your legs to a 90 degree angle with knees above hips.
– On exhale, slowly lower your right arm and left leg, then on inhale bring them back.
– Repeat on the opposite side 10 – 15 times altogether.

 

 

 

Bridge

– Lie face up.
– Raise your hips off the floor until your hips are aligned with your knees and shoulders.
– Return to the start position.
– Repeat 10 – 15 times.

 

 

Would you like to have a printable instruction guide for these postures?

Pilates Exercise for Strong Core and Balance

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