Healthy Body

In This 20-minute Pilates Session, All Roads Lead to Your Core

If you've ever heard the phrase all roads lead to Rome, there's a fitness equivalent: All roads lead to your core. That's the message in the most recent episode of Good Moves with Brian Spencer, an instructor at East River Pilates. This 20-minute core Pilates workout aims to strengthen your core through a whole-body routine—because your core is involved in so many different moves.

Spencer has you try some reverse, seated cat and cow stretches to get started. This is a refreshing take on the classic stretch that allows you to get deep stretching at the start of a core-engaging workout. Spencer encourages you to lean back and stretch your neck and shoulders. "You want to warm up the areas you're about to work to prevent injuries and have a broader range of motion," says Spencer.

Then, you'll try a series of arm raises in your seated position. This can slightly engage the core, which prepares you for some harder moves later in the workout. You'll then move into a few back stretches to prep for moves that involve the muscles in your back and legs. This is a great way to get the blood flowing and limber up your limbs.

Throughout this 20-minute core Pilates sequence, Spencer takes you through a wide variety of moves. As always, Spencer moves through challenging stretches with loads of encouragement. He stresses that each move in this core Pilates workout helps build strength. It might sound challenging, but fear not: You'll ease into each section of the workout and leave with a stronger (and potentially sore) core.

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