Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Move of the Month: Double Leg Stretch

I am in a pilates state of mind after a killer class last night and thought I would share another move with you.

(So excited, next month, I am having a photo shoot with more moves to come for the blog and my website :)

The double leg stretch is a very challenging pilates exercise with much room for error and injury.  Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Remember to keep your abdonimals contracted and slightly imprint (or press) your lower back into the floor for support.
  • If you are a beginner, decrease the angle of your arms and legs by simply pointing them to the ceiling.
  • Watch for tension in your neck and shoulders.  If you are feeling any shake or stress, take a rest and then continue with the posture.

Lets get started!

Double Leg Stretch

  1. Begin in working position with your feet flat on the floor and arms at your side.  Your knees should be in line with your hips and your heels in line with your glutes.
  2. Bring both knees into your chest and lightly hold on to your shins.
  3. Tuck your chin into your chest to prepare and on an exhale, contract your abs and slowly peel your spine off the mat.  The neck and shoulders are relaxed and you are looking at your thighs.
  4. Take 2 full, deep breaths in this position.
  5. Then, extend your arms and legs to a challenging angle (as pictured) or modify as needed.
  6. Squeeze your inner thighs together, point your toes and bring your heels together to form a "V".
  7. Keep your shoulders away from your ears and continue to look at your thighs.
  8. Hold this position for 2 full breaths.  
  9. Then, sweep your back around as you bring your knees back into the the chest and hold your shins.
  10. Repeat 2-3 times.
  11. On an exhale, slowly bring your head back down to the mat.
Do you practice pilates in a studio or at home? 
What is your favourite move?

Stay Healthy,

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