When you start off a Pilates routine, there are certain fundamental exercises that you need to start off with doing before you get into the more complex work as these prep your body for what it needs to do. The Pelvic Lift – which is one such exercise – is performed on the mat and is a great way to start off your Pilates routine. Here’s why.
Beenfits of the Pelvic Lift
Your core isn’t just your six-pack. It is the inner part of your body that provides the strength it needs for the other muscles in your body to function.
Having a strong core is particularly important for athletes – especially runners. Says Julie Wiebe, a physical therapist who specialises in working with athletes:
“The inability to use the deep core muscles is a contributing factor to running injuries. Runners need a better strategy to create stability that supports the demands of running.”
The Pelvic Lift plays a significant role in strengthening your inner core as well as spinal mobilisation and hamstring control. This exercise also is great for alleviating lower back pain. In fact, obstetricians recommend the Pelvic Lift to pregnant women.
How do you perform the Pelvic Lift?
Lie on your back on a mat. Your knees must be bent and your feet will be facing forward. Rest your hands gently at your sides with the palms resting on the mat.
Inhale to prepare and bring your naval to your spine. What this means is that you will tighten your pelvic floor muscles as well as your lower abdominals.
As you exhale, slowly lift your torso off the mat starting with your glutes. As you do so, engage your hamstrings and squeeze your glutes once your entire spine has been lifted off the mat.
Inhale and slowly lower yourself again, making sure that you replace each vertebra on the mat, one by one.
Watch this video for a demonstration of how to do the Pelvic Lift:
Which muscles are worked?
This exercise works the following muscles:
- Hamstring group
- Glute muscles
- Back stabilisers
Points to look out for
As a Pilates instructor, you’re going to need to watch your client like a hawk because if they do the exercise incorrectly they run the risk of injuring themselves badly. So during the Pelvic Lift, make sure that your client doesn’t hyperextend their lumbar spine. If they feel any pain, you can put a small rolled-up towel under their lumbar spine region.
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