Double Your Chances

Double Leg Stretch and the 100 were elected by a recent study as the best way to tone your core, even over traditional crunches.

Prepare Your Mind And Body: 
  • As always review the 5 basic principles of alignment (click). 
  • Of course, you need to include the basic principles of Pilates. 
  • With those in focus, let's begin.
  • Steal away some time for yourself. 
  • Props: Your Pilates mat, a mirror to view yourself in, some quiet music, and a small towel in case you need it for your neck.
The Double Leg Stretch:
  • In supine position (on your back), begin to prepare: Inhale. Exhale.
  • Inhale and with your exhale begin to lift your head and upper back off the floor with your hands behind your head (try not to use them as a means to hold up your head). 
  • If you can, have your fingers touching just tip 2 tip so that you are not tempted to use your hands as a prop. 
  • Take ONE leg at a time off the floor into a table top position, making sure you are keeping your core engaged so as not to go into your lower back. 
  • Inhale and as you exhale slowly extend your legs outward while you extend your arms back so that you are basically in one long position (note photo). 
  • If you can't extend your legs outward without keeping steady or without popping your belly, you might want to back off and not extend your legs quite so far. Are you engaging your core?
  • Inhale and as you exhale, bring your legs and arms back to together (photo). This time you are bringing your arms and hands in and around to your knees OR your ankles, IF you can (photo). 
  • NOTE: One method may teach you to allow your arms to travel out and around your body, then bring them back up along on the inside of your body, back to the top above your head. 
  • Repeat 5 times and you may increase to 10 WHEN you are able to control the move with precision. 
Watch 4:
  • At all times, engage your core. 
  • Let your head follow your spine. Do NOT allow your head to take the lead. 
  • Keep your legs level, not allowing one to fall lower or higher than the other. 
  • Do the same with your arms. 
CAUTION: Exercise at your own risk. Always seek the advice of a health professional before starting ANY exercise program. 
Copyright © 2008 by Pilates Worx 4 Life. All rights reserved. Check out website: www.pilatesworx4life.com