Pilates swimming exercise

Some of the muscles targeted in this Pilates swimming exercise are the obliques, multifidus, erector spinae, gluteus maximus and hamstrings.

Pilates beginner mat exercise

This is a beginner Pilates position and you should move in a controlled slow manner.

You will work on your co-ordination and also improve your hip and shoulder mobility.

Keep the abdominals and pelvic floor active throughout this exercise.

  • Assume the position of kneeling with knees hip width apart. Palms should be placed on the floor, hands are shoulder width apart. Spine should be neutral, neck relaxed, head neutral in line with the spine.

    **You can place a towel under the knees if it is a little uncomfortable to be in this position.

  • Inhale and prepare to stabilize your spine.

  • Exhale and reach one arm and opposite leg out away from your body. Do not lift the arm and leg too high but reach long through the leg out through the toes. Reaching long out through the fingertips.

  • Shoulders should remain stable and away from the ears. Check that you are not rotating your hips or leaning to one side.

  • Place that arm and leg down gently onto the mat and reach long with the opposite arm and leg. Continue to alternate arms and legs. Keep the spine stable and don't allow the belly to relax and become heavy. Draw the navel in and upwards as you breathe and continue to move.

  • If this movement is too challenging you can raise one arm at a time and then work on the legs one at a time. Work on keeping hips level and a relaxed neck and shoulders. Keep your head level with your spine throughout this exercise.

    Pilates beginner mat exercise

  • Repeat this exercise six to eight times remember to work each side of your body evenly.

  • Relax back into your starting position and sit back onto your heels.

    Always check with your doctor before starting any new exercise routine. If you feel any discomfort stop immediately and do not resume until you have seen your doctor.

    Intermediate Pilates