Archive for the tag - pilates

Pilates-Style Ab Workout! [Video]

While I was on my recent week-long Pilates adventure, I learned a new ab exercise called “100s” that I’d like to share with you. It’s powerful, effective and you can do it pretty much anywhere.

It’s important to incorporate new exercises into our routines. It keeps our bodies evolving and helps prevent plateaus – so I’d recommend that you give this one a try.

Watch the video below.

Why Pilates is for Everyone.

Today is the last day of my week-long Pilates adventure in the south of France.

Pilates isn’t part of my normal gym routine. For the most part, my workouts focus on building or maintaining lean muscle mass with free weights and intense cardio sessions – and so I’ve always thought of Pilates as something that wasn’t necessary for me. And indeed, Pilates participants often skew older and female.

By the end of the first class, I realized how wrong I was. Pilates isn’t just for women or an older population – Pilates is for anyone that is.

While I am strong, fast and muscular, I quickly learned that my body was ripe with dysfunction. My feet and knees pigeon outward; my pelvis angles incorrectly; my shoulders pull forward. While my primary muscles are developed, my much smaller stabilizer muscles are weak and rarely used. Almost everyone has structural issues like these with their bodies – and it is through Pilates that we can begin to correct them.

At our Pilates retreat, we’ve started with the basic. As a foundation, we learned how to breathe properly. And from there, we learned how to activate the smaller stabilizer muscles in our bodies. It’s baby steps, but even after a week of two Pilates sessions per day, my posture is improving and my body moves with greater ease and efficiency.

Pilates alone might not give you bulging muscles or a glistening six pack – but it will improve the way you move your body and it may prevent issues (i.e., the need for a hip replacement, etc.) down the road. For these reasons, Pilates is truly for everyone.

How to Breathe Correctly. [Video]

It’s no secret that we must breathe to live, but most of us don’t do it properly. When we’re born, we use proper breath – but over time, with stress, tension and fear – we adopt less effective and efficient techniques.

As I’m on a week-long Pilates retreat in Provence, France, I asked my instructor to teach us how to breathe. Check out the video below.