It’s summer! You know what that means, right? Everyone is showing off their beach-ready bods with crop tops and body-hugging tanks. First of all, when it comes to bodies there’s NOTHING to be afraid of showing! Let everything hang out! But, if you were interested in getting fit for the remainder of summer, then you’re in the right place! Here’s some killer pilates moves that’ll get you that chocolate-bar shaped torso you always wanted. All the pilates moves picked here are BEGINNER FRIENDLY! So don’t be afraid, first-timers!
1. The Hundred
One of the most classic core targeting pilates moves out there. And it’s no wonder why. This move manages to encompass everything about pilates in just a few simple movements. Some like to use it as a warm-up exercise for your abs, but lets be real here. This pilates move can make my abs quake on its own!
1. Lie with your back flat on the floor (or mat) and bend your knees so your lower legs are perpendicular with the floor.
2. Raise your chest and head from the floor to engage your core.
3. Hover your arms in front of you fingers pointed and pump them up and down (kind of like a bird flapping its wings).
The criss-cross pilates move is a favourite for its side to side movement targeting the obliques. And let me tell you, this one gets me. EVERY TIME. It doesn’t take many reps for that sizzling pain to start sinking in, and your abs will hate you for it the day after when you can’t even get out of bed…but that just means it works!
1. Lie with your back flat on the floor, lift your hands to support your head, elbows wide and chest raised.
2. Bend your knees into your chest then extend your right leg to hover above the floor. At the same time, twist your body so the right elbow comes in contact with the left knee.
3. Do the same movement on the other side and repeat. The burn will be present…
3. Double Leg Lift
I’ll be honest with you. When I first started, I had trouble with this pilates move in particular. Having the strength to pull my legs up and down took me a while. So don’t be discouraged if you have a pilates move you just can’t get! As you can imagine, this move can really build strength! Attacking the lower abdominal muscles in particular, this move is a great choice for eating away at that tasty muffin top!
1. Back flat on the floor, elbows with and hands supporting your head, lift your legs up straight and high.
2. Slowly and gently lower your legs until they’re barely touching the floor and then lift them back up again. Repeat movement for maximum ab-killing effect!
TIP: The slower you lower your legs the more work it is for your core with this pilates move! So don’t try and rush it!
4. Candlestick Dipper
We are going to get that pelvic V-shape defined with this pilates move! The candlestick dipper is both fun, very beginner-friendly while also being just a little funky! Still encompassing everything pilates with emphasis on breathing, precision and control, this move offers a new tackling the classic side-crunch movement and really enhance it!
1. Kneel on the floor with your right leg and stretch your left leg out straight to your side. Make sure your foot is flat on the floor.
2. Bring your hands together and hold them over your head in a prayer position, arms straight.
3. Bend at the waist to the right and lean as far as you can. Right yourself.
4. Continue and then repeat on the other sides
5. The Teaser
The Teaser. With a Capital T. Also known as the V-sit up, This is often the pilates move that people like to end their workouts on since it’s a static move, but still high intensity. While some moves include upper and lower abs isolation, the teaser is an all rounder that targets both areas effectively. And, it looks so cool when you get your body into that V shape perfectly!
1. Back flat on the ground, lie with your arms stretched above your head.
2. Lift your legs to a 45-degree angle, keeping toes pointed and legs straight. At the same time, bring your arms to your sides keeping your head and chest raised.
3. Raise your legs and torso further until you’re sitting in a V-shape, legs extended and back straight.
4. Hold position before gently lowering yourself.