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Hey guys, I’m Olivia and this is Todd, and we’re from Active Life Fitness.

Today, we’re going to be running you through a short Pilates workout.

Pilates is excellent for lengthening, strengthening and toning the muscles. It’s also something you can do at home, without any equipment and you don’t need anyone else’s help.

First, we’ll work through a simple bridging exercise. This is great for your glutes (gluteus maximus) and hamstrings!

So, the level one position is just lying on your back, with hands down by your sides and palms facing up to the ceiling. For the level two position, float your hands up to the ceiling at shoulder height, and keep long through your fingertips.

Tuck your pubic bone into your navel and then slowly roll your hips up, one vertebra at a time. Lift the hips into a strong alignment, and make sure you keep the weight through the heels the whole time. Keep a nice straight line through the shoulder to the hips and up long to the knees. Hold this position for about ten seconds and then slowly roll back down, vertebra by vertebra.

For the level twos – keeping your arms floated up to the ceiling, tuck the pubic bone to your navel and slowly roll up. Keep your weight through the heels, and make sure the knees are stacked over the ankles. Keep hips relaxed. For bottom squeezes – slightly lower the hips, and then when you exhale, lift your hips back up into alignment. And repeat. Now, slowly roll back down to the mat, vertebra by vertebra. Do about ten bottom squeezes, then have a rest, then come back up to the bridge position. Do three sets in total.

Now, keep those hands floated to the ceiling, we’re going to work into a contraction. Let’s get into tabletops – so, the right knee comes up above the hip, and the left knee joins it. Exhale, take chin to chest, eyeline to knee, and fold the ribs to hips into contraction. Lengthen your fingertips long then inhale, and lower back down. Repeat. The level two position is, lengthen the legs up to the ceiling and squeeze the heels together. Then exhale, fold up, squeeze the ribs to the hips, lengthen fingertips long, inhale, and lower back down. Do about ten to twelve of those and again, three sets total.

The last exercise is clam for our glutes. So we roll onto our side, and the hips stay stacked one on top of each other, and your heels should be just up under the line of the bottom. We exhale, open the knee to the ceiling, squeeze into the glutes, make sure you don’t roll back through the hips, and then inhale and lower back down. Make sure you keep those hips open! Repeat three times, and then hold the knee open for ten seconds, then release. In total, ten clams and one ten second release.

Let’s finish with our bottom circles. Extend your leg out in front of the line of the body, turn the toe down to the ground and the heel up to the ceiling, keeping the hips stacked. We circle the foot around for ten, and back the other way for ten. And then we lift and lower, so the heel lifts up the ceiling and toes lower down. Do ten of those, and release.

We do teach pilates classes here at Active Life. We have lots of mat work on the timetable, so please feel free to come in and trial a class with us.

Have an awesome day, guys!