Pilates exercises for your core
Your core is about more than just the abs you can see; your core is a complex series of muscles that don’t include your arms and legs, and are the centre of your strength and stability. These groups of muscles are your power house and are responsible for keeping you stable and are incorporated into almost every movement of the human body.
Pilates exercises are one of the best ways to improve your core strength and stability. The following exercises specifically target the smaller and deeper core muscles. Once recruited, these muscles control the position of the spine during dynamic movements of your body.
When competing in an Ironwoman race in big surf I need to be strong enough to dive through the white water, punch through a breaking wave on my surf ski or catch a big wave from way out to sea on my board. All of this requires me to be fit, strong and powerful. My core is my powerhouse that is constantly working hard to help control my limbs and keep me balanced in such an unstable and unpredictable environment. Just as I place a huge importance on strengthening my core, many athletes and novices alike are adding Pilates sessions into their weekly programs.
I love doing Pilates because it allows me to relax and focus on my body awareness and control. Pilates gives me time to really concentrate on my body, and how it is feeling. I think it is important for all athletes and exercisers alike to take some time away from ‘huff and puff’ exercise to focus on breathing, muscle activation, body symmetry and core stability.
Strengthening your core helps to relieve lower back pain, prevent injuries and improve your posture and flexibility. Almost every Pilates exercise uses your core.
Try out six of my favourite moves and not only will you be stronger and more stable, you may even end up with a six pack too!
(Video coming soon….)
1. Toe taps
2. Side Plank
3. Single leg glute bridges
4. Roll up
5. 4 point diagonals