It all starts with good posture. Without making an effort to sit or stand up straight, your bones, muscles, ligaments and tendons are not able to function optimally. Poor alignment results in all body imbalances and can lead to many health problems (headache, stiffness, reduced flexibility, sciatica, digestion issues, etc...)
The best way to improve your posture is to focus on exercises that strengthen your core. Spend 10 mins a day to stretch, straighten and strengthen the spine- Jenny (our instructor in bePilates) presents wall series exercises which will help you to transfer Pilates principles into daily life.
Wall Series: Standing
Goal: This basic standing exercise establishes correct alignment and re-educate the spine.
How: Stand against the wall with feet about a step away. Legs in Pilates stance or parallel together. Align spine firmly against wall from tailbone to head. Navel drawn in and up and breathe naturally. Stand for several moments to feel the imprinting and vertebral spacing of spine
- Shoulders back and open
- Slightly tuck chin to back of head to lengthen the neck
- Expand ribs but avoid arching the lower back
- Soften knees or start with feet further away to keep lower back flush against the wall.
Wall Series: Arm Circles
Goal: This exercise reinforces the concept of controlled mobility and promotes learning to use the arms from the Powerhouse.
How: Set up for Wall Series: Standing. Breathe naturally throughout; raise both arms to shoulder height, open arms within peripheral vision, lower arms to complete the circle in front of thighs. Repeat 3-6 repetitions each way.
- Continue to stretch the neck long behind you.
- Focus on connecting to the Powerhouse to move the arms from the lowest back rib.
- Glue each backbone in to the wall.
Wall Series: Alternating Arms
How: Alternate lifting the arms over head, passing at shoulder height.
- Firmly press the small of back in to the wall.
- Move the arms from the lower back rib, pulling the lower abdominals in and up.
Wall Series: Roll Down with Arm Circles
Goal: This exercise teaches spinal articulation and helps with vertebral stiffness.
How: Set up for wall Series: Standing. Start with nodding the head forward, then the shoulders, then peeling the vertebrae one by one until pelvis is slightly away. Broaden the back to circle the arms 4 times each direction in little circles with the head and shoulders hang freely. Repeat 3 times.
- Pull navel up higher to control the roll down.
- Lengthen the spine in both directions
- Release the tension in the neck while circling the arms.