How to Strengthen the Abdominals with Spinal Rolldown Pilates Exercise





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Published on Apr 7, 2013

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INTRO: This is such a nice stretch for the back and spine, and really strengthens the abdominals at the same time.

Hello, and welcome to Inner Strength Pilates.

I’m just going to show you now a great exercise that’s going to both work your abdominals, get you a nice flat tummy, but also articulate and stretch the spine for you at the same time.

Alright, right let’s get started, so find yourself a mat or a blanket that you can lay on, place that on the ground and then let’s get started, okay.

So what we’re going to do is we’re going to start sitting up nice and tall through the spine, you want to flex your toes back so that your toes are reaching back towards your chest.

Okay, now this is quite a hard exercise so what we want to do is make sure that we are switching on our core correctly, if you don’t know how to switch your core on correctly, please, please make sure that you do see a proper Pilates instructor to train you how to do it correctly.

It’s not something that you can learn over a video which is why I’m not going to show you how to switch on your core, so yeah, you really need to make sure that you get your core working correctly, otherwise you can injure yourself whilst trying to do Pilates without using the correct core stability, okay.

But for those of you who know how to do the breathing correctly, use your pelvic floor muscles correctly and switch on your core correctly, then let’s go ahead!

Okay, now this is quite hard so you might want to find something to help keep your feet down, otherwise your feet might lift up during the exercise, so something like some ankle weights or just something that’s quite heavy, place them on your ankles so that your legs are nice and supported there.

Alright, so what we’re going to do is we’re going to breathe in to prepare, breathe in into the backs of the ribcage, and then exhale switch on your tummy and pelvic floor, switch on the core, keep breathing out and start to roll down through the spine.

Breathe in is to hold here, now the movement happens all on the breathe out, we’re going to roll back up one vertebrae at a time.

Okay, if you’re finding it easy, take the weights off.

If you want a little bit of help but not with the weights you can grab a thera band if you’ve got one, tuck it behind the feet and hold onto the thera band just to help support you again because it is quite hard to control if your core is not strong enough.

Once again, if you want to challenge yourself, no weights, no thera band, just your core strength supporting you completely, alright, so let’s do 10 of them.

Now nice and careful, make sure your core is switching on the whole way throughout the movement and imagine that you’ve got a spike in each vertebrae, I want one spike to plant down into the mat or the ground one at a time.

Breathe in is to hold once you’re laying down nice and flat, and then on the breath out, tuck the chin in towards the chest and pull out one spike at a time, so not two vertebrae moving at a time, really tuck and curl the spine so we get lots of articulation through the spine.

Here we go for 10, so grab your ankle weights or little weights on the ankles if you need or your thera band, and here we go.

And the slower you go the harder it is, breathe in, so the slower that you curl up the harder your abdominal and core must work.

Alright, so keep going with that, if you want a couple of variations, then when you come up you can go into a hamstring stretch, so grab onto the toes and reach right forward in between.

Now if you want to make it a little bit harder, you can actually just roll down half way, breathe in to hold, and breathe out to roll back up.

So I’ll show you that exercise now.

Bring your hands here like a genie position, make sure your shoulders aren’t lifted, drop them down, breath in is to hold, exhale for your tummy and pelvic floor just to roll down to here.

So I hope you’ve enjoyed that exercise, I hope your tummy is starting to feel a little bit stronger now, and I really look forward to our next video next month.

Alright, enjoy, take care, and I’ll speak to you then.

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