HIGHETT PILATES and FITNESS CENTRE

2 Tips For Awesome Abs

Studio Pilates in Highett - Pilates Plus Lifestyle Studio

Every single person who comes to Pilates Plus wants stronger abs and core strength. I can tell you from personal experience that having strong, functional abs feels awesome!! Your entire body feels lighter, your spine is supported, flexible and able to do everyday tasks without pain! And, your belly is flatter, toned and has shape…always a good thing!

Have you ever thought about why most people struggle to have strong abs? There are a few reasons.

The first is knowledge!

You wouldn’t expect someone who has never played tennis to be able to get on the court and to immediately hit aces. But when it comes to exercise, specifically ab work there is an assumption that by just doing some crunches and planks…like everyone else is doing, is enough.

Learning how to use your abs effectively takes time and is a definite learning curve, as anyone who has done Pilates will tell you! And every person has a unique body that requires specific ab exercises, for instance if you have a tight lower back, this will affect how your abs work.

The second little hurdle is having a structured, time framed program.

Doing random ab exercises doesn’t work! You need to assess your starting point, know which exercises are most appropriate for you to start with and progressively build the challenge and complexity of the program.

An initial program would generally last 6-12 weeks, training at least 3 times a week. Awesome abs don’t happen overnight, (although you will start to feel the benefits pretty quickly) and you need to be very persistent and consistent with your training. This is a foundation principle that Joseph Pilates talks about a lot.

 

Then there’s the burn!

There is nothing quite like the sensation of the ab burn! What is it? It’s when you have worked your abdominal muscles effectively, they are being challenged and they need to “dig deeper” to get stronger.

Now in my teaching experience, most people STOP when they start to feel the burn so lose the potential benefits. Muscles get stronger by being challenged and put under load…this includes your abs!

So my 2 tips for awesome abs are:

  1. Learn about abdominal strength and how to do abdominal exercises correctly
  2. WORK HARD! Work through the burn as long as you can maintain correct form and technique and be persistent and consistent!

I’ve included these videos to demonstrate technique and the different levels of a basic Pilates ab exercise. If you are familiar with them and understand the technique, try doing 3 sets of 15 repetitions, every second day for 6 weeks.

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