News Reality

5 Pilates At-Home Exercises Borrowed from the Reformer

by www.huffingtonpost.com
By Tiffany Ayuda for Life by Daily Burn Photo: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn For anyone who isn't familiar with the Pilates reformer, it can intimidate even the most well-versed fitness fans. With a variety of straps overhead, a moving bed and metal springs beneath you, who wouldn't be afraid to use the muscle-burning contraption? Created by Joseph Pilates, the reformer is designed to provide resistance to what he calls your body's powerhouse: your abs, lower back, hips and abdomen. With about 500 exercises, the Pilates reformer is equipped with flexible lightweight bands, a carriage (at the foot of the reformer), which is attached by a set of springs that have different levels of resistance and shoulder blocks to keep you from sliding when you push and pull off the carriage. Daily Burn: Daily Burn Pilates: 3 Moves to Try Now But Pilates-via-reformer isn't the only way to reap the benefits of this core-focused workout method. What's great about Pilates is that you can do many of the reformer exercises with just a mat and little or no equipment. Here, Sylvia Ostrowska, founder of Pilates by Sylvia, shows us how to reap the benefits of the reformer with these basic Pilates mat exercises inspired by some of nature's fiercest animals. Think: Floating like an elegant swan but attacking like an agile snake. Trust us, after this workout, no one will want to mess with you. 5 Pilates Exercises (No Reformer Needed!) GIF: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn 1. The Elephant "This exercise specifically targets the hamstrings and calves. Some abdominals are working as well because you're pulling your legs. It's also great for someone who wants to improve their flexibility and mobility," Ostrowska says. Depending on your flexibility, you can keep your entire hands down or your fingertips touching the floor. Ostrowska recommends using yoga blocks (or books) if you're not able to touch the floor. How to: Stand tall on a mat with your feet close together and toes pointing towards the front of the room (a). Bend forward so your hands are flat on the mat and fingers face the same direction as your toes. If you need to adjust your stance so your lower back feels more comfortable, you can place your feet farther away from your upper body (b). Slowly move each foot back and away from your hands so you form a downward dog. Then, move each foot back to the starting position (c). Do 12 reps (moving both feet back is one rep). Daily Burn: Pulse, Plank, Plie: The Barre Workout You Can Do at Home GIF: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn 2. The Clam This Pilates move may sound gentle and easy, but don't be fooled by its innocuous-sounding name. While lunges, squats and leg raises aren't to be skipped, adding the clam to our lower-body workouts will bring the heat to your lower half. "This movement strengthens the gluteus medius, which enables a steady walking gait," Ostrowska says. Remember form is key to get the maximum calorie burn from this exercise. And once you're ready for more resistance, you can place a band or tie a towel around your thighs. How to: Lay on your right side and press up so your forearm anchors you to the floor and raises your upper body. Straighten your hips and align them with your back (a). Place your left hand on your waist. Keep your knees bent in front of you and feet slightly raised off the floor (b). Using your thigh muscles and glutes pulse your legs open and closed, while keeping your feet off the ground. Your hips shouldn't be moving (c). Do 12 reps before switching sides Daily Burn: 5 Standing Ab Exercises for People Who Hate Crunches GIF: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn 3. 100s "Even though the 100s are an abdominals exercise, the lats and triceps are engaged while your muscles are beating rapidly. Your inner thighs and quads are also working as you squeeze your legs together," Ostrowska says. This classic Pilates move makes a great exercise for improving your cardio endurance. Pumping your arms up and down rapidly five counts while inhaling and five counts while exhaling trains your core and lungs to work harder. "Additionally, for those that need extra athletic training, it's possible to pump your arms and inhaling for five counts and exhaling seven to eight counts. This is a great way to improve lung capacity," Ostrowska says. How to: Lay flat on your back with your hands at your sides and feet straight in front of you (a). Raise your legs about 45 degrees off the floor and lift your head up so your shoulders are off the ground (b). Engage your abdominals and start pumping your arms at your sides, inhaling and exhaling for five counts each (c). Count up to 100 and repeat the exercise for two more sets. GIF: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn 4. Swan with T If you're familiar with the superman pose, the swan with T engages some of the same muscles but packs an extra punch to your shoulders and arms. Pro tip: Ostrowska says you should keep your eyes looking down, then you lift your chest as much as you can. Your neck shouldn't be arched, which is what most people tend to do. "The neck is the extension of your spine and it should move with it. As you peel yourself away from the floor, your sternum should be coming up as well. This is a back exercise," Ostrowska explains. How to: With or without weights, lay on your stomach with your face touching the mat. Extend your arms at your sides in a straight line to form a "T" with your body (a). Engaging your upper-back muscles, slowly lift your chest off the floor, while your arms remain lifted at your sides (b). If you can, try to left if your lower body off the mat, too, slightly raising your thighs and toes off the ground. Remember to keep your gaze down (c). Lower your chest back to the mat to the starting position and repeat the movement 12 times. GIF: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn 5. The Snake This pose is one of the most challenging Pilates exercises, according to Ostrowska, because there is a lot of spinal articulation and shifting your weight from your arms to your feet. "This exercise is reminiscent of the Chaturunga in yoga, where the triceps are the emphasis. But with the snake, you're working your shoulders, back and oblique muscles," Ostrowska says. How to: Get into a plank position with your hands on the mat and your arms straight to lift your body off the ground (a). Cross one leg under the other with your bottom knee slightly bent, and your top leg straight (b). Using your arm muscles and core, arch your back so your chin meets your chest, and your upper body moves towards the back of the mat. Keep your body lifted throughout the entire movement (c). Peel your upper body back up to starting position so your back and neck are super extended into a Chaturunga pose (d). Do 12 reps. GIF: Tiffany Ayuda / Life by Daily Burn Bonus: Short spine massage This Pilates exercise is a great way to end your workout because it helps massage your spine and the muscles in your upper- and lower-back. "This exercise is mostly a stretch for your back. The dismount should be slow and thorough," Ostrowska says. That means engaging your abdominal muscles and triceps to keep your body stable and send your legs over your head. How to: Lay on your back on a mat with your feet and legs together and your hands at your sides with your palms facing down (a). Inhale to prepare while you lift your legs 45 degrees off the mat (b). Exhale, slowly rolling your body as you bring your heels over your head (c). Once your feet and back can't extend any farther, slowly bring your feet back, bending your knees, and then extending your legs back to 45 degrees (d). Do 12 reps. For more challenging Pilates workouts, sign up for Daily Burn Pilates. More from Life by Daily Burn: Are You Foam Rolling All Wrong? 5 No-Equipment Back Exercises You Need in Your Life Ab Challenge: 5 Planks to Sculpt Your Core

-- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website.


Read Full Article On www.huffingtonpost.com
Latest
Raymond Sackler, the only living brother out of the three who introduced the controversial painkiller OxyContin in the mid 90s has died. The Sackler family was the 19th wealthiest family in the countr
You can do a little detective work yourself.
The Saskatchewan government says there have been three cases of Lyme disease in the province since 2008. Five Lyme patients beg to differ.
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A wildfire in central California was contained enough on Saturday for authorities to consider allowing more people back to their houses, a day after evacuation orders were lift
Congregating around a table is one of life’s great pleasures, surrounded by good friends or family, but gathering around the apparatus a table of another kind I recently got to found out about w
Steven Weultjes, founder of Cura Digital Agency, provides global perspective on how healthcare is changing. Steven gives his insight into the key drivers of the shift in consumer-driven healthcare and
Babies' diapers may hold clues to their brain development, a new study suggests.
We have a say in how we respond to our emotions.
Nearly 1 in 5 American adults deals with a mental illness or substance abuse problem each year, a U.S. government study says.
Here's Republican candidate Kelli Ward said about McCain and "stepping away as quickly as possible" after his cancer diagnosis.
“I realize now how messed up my body was, and I’m working hard to get it back to normal,” said the Mets starter, who has not pitched since April 30.
ROME (Reuters) - Authorities have ordered a halt to pumping water out of a lake near Rome following a prolonged drought, a decision that could force city officials to impose water rationing in the Ita
Alzheimer's is common, costly and harms patients and their caregivers, but there are no effective treatments to slow the disease. This is bad news for companies. Caregivers are absent and distracted e
Can farting on an airplane make passengers ill?
Professional support eases tension and provides new skills for young families
LONDON, (Reuters) - HIV experts at an international conference starting on Saturday are keenly courting colleagues in oncology to explore whether advances in harnessing the immune system against cance
Trump's mixed messages on "Obamacare" raise questions over White House strategy on health care
War on GOOP breaks out into the open and a second look at sweetener scare. Read our weekly roundup of eclectic and under-the-radar health and medical
War on GOOP breaks out into the open and a second look at sweetener scare. Read our weekly roundup of eclectic and under-the-radar health and medical
LOUISVILLE, Kentucky (Reuters) - Patricia Canon drives poor rural Kentucky women to distant abortion clinics each week, part of a national army of volunteers who are growing bolder even as abortion fo
Road trips are a quintessential summer travel experience, but the jam packed Rockies are driving everyone crazy. Fret not road warrior! We put you back in the driver’s seat with three scenic rou
LONDON (Reuters) - British pharmacy chain Boots has apologized for its response to a campaign calling for it to cut the price of one of its morning-after pills and said it was looking for cheaper alte
ZURICH (Reuters) - A European Medicines Agency (EMA) panel said on Friday it has recommended Roche's immunotherapy Tecentriq as a treatment for advanced bladder and lung cancer, setting the stage for
What started as a chat over coffee has evolved into a hugely successful golf tournament. Like-minded individuals felt the need to support less-advantaged kids in our city and decided to start the Busi
(Reuters) - Residents of a historic gold-mining town in central California began returning home on Friday as evacuation orders prompted by a massive wildfire were lifted, but some 1,500 structures rem
(Reuters) - The largest city on New Zealand's south island has declared a state of emergency amid a severe storm which has already seen hundreds of homes evacuated across the Pacific island nation, hi
The pharmaceutical company says it is looking for cheaper morning-after pill options.
Baby Beckham Ralph has returned home to Martinsville, Indiana, after Hospiten Cancun in Cancun, Mexico, allegedly pressured the family for $30,000 in medical bills.
Parents might want to shield their children from unpleasant experiences but experts say that playing it too safe is actually harmful.
DENVER (Reuters) - U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said on Friday that Colorado's Canyons of the Ancients archeological site is no longer on a list of more than two dozen national monuments under r
Baby Beckham Ralph has returned home to Martinsville, Indiana, after Hospiten Cancun in Cancun, Mexico, allegedly pressured the family for $30,000 in medical bills.
(Reuters Health) - Jewish women of European descent may be at risk for additional genetic mutations that increase their risk of breast cancer, according to a new study.
(Reuters) - An outbreak of salmonella food poisoning linked to a type of papaya has sickened 47 people from 12 states, including one person in New York City who died and 12 who were hospitalized, U.S.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The U.S. Customs and Border Patrol plans to use a 2005 anti-terror law to sidestep an environmental impact study for a section of President Donald Trump's border wall that will pa

Recent News

William and Harry share intimate memories of life with Princess Diana

In new documentary, they discussed the happy times and keeping her memory alive
Read Full Article

Chiefs' Tamba Hali is upset with his team, tweets more than a dozen times about it

"Am I needed in KC anymore?” the 33-year-old asked, after complaining about his lack of sacks.
Read Full Article

Ryan Raburn will go on bereavement leave Sunday; Pedro Severino to join Nationals

Washington will call up the young catcher to fill their roster Sunday.
Read Full Article

If the Jays are going to sell, there's not much to offer

It’s time to sell. But the bigger question for the Blue Jays is: Sell what?
Read Full Article

'Stranger Things' Season 2 Trailer Is An Eleven Out Of Ten

Your day just got “stranger” in the best way.
Read Full Article

Census data highlights challenges of rural education

It's not just the economy— population loss can take a toll on the schoolhouse too.              
Read Full Article

Civil rights veterans highlight role of Rust College during movement

For Frank Smith and other civil rights workers, Rust College was a safe haven as they braved the dangers of registering blacks to vote in Mississippi.             
Read Full Article

Best way for Dodgers to win the World Series is by adding a pitcher

There is no great mystery about the most effective way to win a World Series. The Dodgers demonstrated how in 1963, when they swept the New York Yankees. The Dodgers got 108 outs in that World Ser
Read Full Article

Video: Shannon Purser crashes the "Stranger Things" panel to question Barb's fate

Read Full Article

Popular Finance

Best way for Dodgers to win the World Series is by adding a pitcher

There is no great mystery about the most effective way to win a World Series. The Dodgers demonstrated how in 1963, when they swept the New York Yankees. The Dodgers got 108 outs in that World Ser
Read Full Article

Video: Shannon Purser crashes the "Stranger Things" panel to question Barb's fate

Read Full Article

Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo discuss Batman vs. 'his nightmare versions of himself'

Read Full Article

Three up, three down: Pirates focus on winning now rather than later

A look at the trending topics this week in MLB: THREE UP Pirate flag: Kudos to the Pittsburgh Pirates, another team “trying to win” rather than “collecting controllable assets.” The analytical pun
Read Full Article

Ben Affleck squashes Batman exit rumors

The squad played an action-packed "Justice League" trailer for the capacity crowd, and briefly addressed the exit of director Zack Snyder, who handed off the reins of finishing the film after a fa
Read Full Article

A veteran on the FYF Fest bill, Jonathan Richman displays eternally boyish charms

Read Full Article

Vader Trump Cosplay wants to 'Make the Death Star Great Again'

Read Full Article

Trump tweets that he's pondering presidential pardons related to Russia probe

Read Full Article

Amid widening Russia investigation, Trump tweets that the president 'has complete power to pardon'

President Trump raised the specter of presidential pardons Saturday — declaring his “complete power” to grant them — amid a string of angry tweets that reflect his growing concern about the wideni
Read Full Article