April 10, 2008

Pilates workout - The Mermaid

Level of difficulty: Advanced Beginner

The Mermaid is part of the Pilates stretching exercise series; you can do it at home with no other element than a Pilates mat.

Graceful moves that stretch out your upper body -as when you get up in the morning- and open up your chest. They lengthen and strengthen your lateral obliques, the muscles that help to form your waistline. Yeah, these are the troublesome muscles that give rise to the infamous love handles.

Keys for the mermaid exercise

  • Breathe: Inhale as you stretch up inone straight direction. Exhale when you are going to move to the other side.
  • Energize: Visualize yourself as a marionette with a string pulling you from the ceiling. Then imagine this string is pulling you upwards as to form a curve of a side-stretch.
  • Align: Keep shoulders and hips horizontal in home position. If your ribs are poking out, it is because you are sitting on one hip.

Mermaid step by step

Source: Jillian Hessel


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