Pilates Workouts

Prepare to Be Sore: This 7-Move Pilates-Inspired Workout Will Light up Your Full Body

Rachel Lapidos

Pilates-inspired workouts—one of Well+Good’s 2020 wellness trends—are known for their really, really slow, small movements that burn like hell. While you could hit up a studio in your ‘hood, you can get a Pilates in home workout in your very own living room—with that same level of muscle-quaking burn.

This month, Solidcore trainer Triana Brown is bringing us at-home Pilates exercises that you can do anywhere, anytime, with just a couple of sliders (or a towel or some paper plates). In February, Brown will be our Trainer of the Month, and she’ll be bringing you four weeks of how-can-this-be-so-hard workouts. This week, target your core, upper and lower body, and glutes in a 15-minute, seven-move sweat sesh. PS: You might need a towel for yourself too, because it’s gonna get sweaty.

Try this full-body slider workout

1. Plank to pike: Starting in plank position with your hands directly underneath your shoulders, put your toes right on top of your sliders. With your tailbone tucked under, contract your abdominals and lift your hips up to the ceiling into a pike. Keep your hips lifted throughout the entire range of motion as you slide back into a plank. Go as slow as you can—you should feel the burn right away. If you want to make it harder, you can hold at the top of the pike for a few seconds and even add a pulse so that your hips go up and down. You could also add a plank up-down at the bottom, coming down onto your elbows and pushing back up. If you need support, you can go down on your knees and elbows with a flat back and a tucked tail as you lift your hips up two to three inches. Do this for two minutes total.

2. Plank crunch with twist: Use just one slider and bring your hands to the ground in a high plank, both of your feet on the slider. Open your hips to one direction and squeeze those abdominals to bring your knees into your chest for a crunch. Then, come back out into neutral plank position, and alternate to the other direction, opening the hips to the other side with a crunch. To add tension, you can hold halfway or add a pulse. Stay slow and do this for three minutes. For a modification, you can do this on your knees and elbows, keeping your hips square. For more of a challenge, add in a plank up-down.

3. Hamstring curls: Come to a supine position and put your heels directly on your sliders. Lift your hips into the air, make sure your tailbone is tucked under and your glutes tight, and push your feet out past your knees as your hips remain lifted. Then squeeze your hamstrings and glutes to re-stack your knees on top of your ankles. Avoid arching your back. If this is too much, you can lower your hips a bit as you go in and out. You could always alternate one leg out at a time. For a challenge, lift up onto your toes, which will create more instability. Do this for two minutes.

4. Platform lunge—right: Standing up, put your right foot firmly on the ground and your left toes on the slider. Keep your hips hinged back and decelerate down into a lunge, bringing your glute all the way down in line with your knee. Try to shift your weight back into your heel and lift your toes, driving into your heels to extend your leg back up just 90-percent of the way. Keep a microbend in the knee at the top. Keep your shoulder blades down and abs tight to protect your spine. Keep all of your weight in the active leg to avoid tension in the back hamstring. For more of a challenge, come down halfway and hold with an option to pulse, or for more support you can hold onto a surface. Do this for two minutes.

5. Platform lunge—left: Switch legs and keep your right heel lifted as you drag it back into a lunge. If you feel unstable, you can widen the stance of your legs. If you did a hold and pulse on the right side, do it here too for balance. Square your hips and engage your abs as you perform the exercise for two minutes.

6. Plank up + down: In a high plank position, hold your hands underneath your shoulders. From here, come down to your elbows, then come back onto your hands. Focus on keeping your elbows nice and close to your body and your ribcage so that you get more tension in your triceps. Alternate from side to side to make sure each arm is getting an equal challenge. If it feels like too much, you can do this from your knees. For more, add in a push-up at the top. Do this for one minute.

7. Narrow plank extension with tricep push-up: Grab your sliders and come down to your knees. Your hands go directly on your sliders. Before you start, push your hips forward, reaching your hands out past your shoulders and bending at the elbow. Keep your elbows tight to your body as you push up, then slide back up. If it’s too much, just do the extensions, reaching your arm out and then back in slowly. Do this for two minutes.

Be sure to add this 10-minute yoga for arms workout into your sweat vocabulary, along with this resistance band leg workout from last month’s Trainer of the Month. 

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