The classic Pilates Series of 5 is a core workout you can do anywhere!
Why you need to be doing the Pilates Series of 5
The Fab 5! If you’ve taken my class before, you know that I love this simple series as a warmup and core strengthener. It seems easy enough, but done in sequence without stopping, the Pilates Series of 5 will get your abs burning in just a few minutes, making it the perfect exercise routine you can literally do anywhere. If done several times a week, you can develop great core strength in just five to 10 minutes a day!
How to Perform the Pilates Series of 5
Do 10 to 12 reps per exercise, then rest 1 minute and repeat.
Exercise 1: Single Leg Stretch
Lay on your back. Legs come to table top. Lift head, neck and shoulders looking toward your thighs. Reach one leg out and then the other guiding the knee in with the hands. Inhale leg away and exhale as you alternate.
Exercise 2: Double Leg Stretch
Legs at table top. Lift head, neck and shoulders look towards your thighs. Hands come to your temples. Reach both legs and arms out. Circle arm around and hug the knee in.
Exercise 3: Scissors
Legs to the ceiling. Lift head, neck and shoulders and look towards your thighs. Grab behind the right leg and lower the left leg towards the floor only as low as you can keep the pelvis square to the ceiling. Pull the leg toward you and exhale. Inhale switch.
Exercise 4: Lift and Lowers
Legs to the ceiling, toes turned out laterally, heels together. Hands behind the head, look towards the thighs. Inhale lower both legs away for midline only as far as you can maintain your low back on the floor. Exhale flatten the belly and raise the legs to the ceiling.
Exercise 5: Criss Cross
Legs come to table top. Hands behind head, elbows out wide, lift head, neck and shoulders, look toward your thighs. Reach one leg out as you rotate and bring your underarm towards the opposite knee. Inhale leg away and exhale as you alternate.
Modification: Leave your head down; when reaching legs out, reach them more toward the ceiling to help protect the low back.
Amy Federman is a certified Pilates and TRX instructor at ABC Pilates in Laguna Niguel, California. Amy found her passion for Pilates eight years ago; her desire to teach was ignited by the fantastic results she achieved for herself both physically and mentally. She is committed to the teachings of Joseph Pilates and the rewards that come with the discipline. As a mom of two, Amy says she appreciates the total body workout that Pilates can provide in just an hour.
Click here to learn more about Amy and the other ABC Instructors.