Articles by Arielle Bendory

Tighten Up: Top 3 Pilates Moves for a Toned Booty post image

Looking to tone up your booty for the upcoming short shorts season? There are a variety of Pilates exercises that are perfect not only for glute strength, but for hamstring, back, and ab strength as well. Many of us who spend a lot of time sitting during the day have tight hip flexors. Hip flexors are a group of large muscles that connect the front thigh to the pelvis and are in charge of flexing at the hip joint. Tight hip flexor muscles can pull your pelvis out of whack, which can lead to bad posture and low back pain. Performing exercises that focus on the glutes and hamstrings is perfect for realigning the pelvis and opening up tight hips while also shaping up that booty.

In my last article about toning your abs, I mentioned that Pilates is a full-body workout with an emphasis on the core. Meaning you never just work one muscle group; instead, you use the core to develop a deep connection through your entire body, from head to toe. Strengthening the core connection can help correct posture, heal back pain, prevent injuries, and rehabilitate.

It’s no surprise that Pilates is gaining immense popularity in the fitness world. I truly believe that if done mindfully, it is the healthiest and most efficient form of exercise.

Here are my three favorite exercises to tighten and tone your backside:

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Tighten Up: Top 3 Pilates Moves for Flat Abs post image

Cardio workouts are a great way to shed pounds, but my favorite way to tone up is by focusing on deep core muscles. Pilates exercises develop a strong core connection through a full-body workout.

We all hear talk about the core, but many don’t realize the core goes beyond abdominals. As defined in Pilates, specific muscles make up the core: the transversus abdominis, your internal abs; the pelvic floor, at the base of your abs and attached to the pelvis; the diaphragm, which extends across the bottom of the rib cage and is used for breathing; and the multifidus, a small but powerful muscle that supports your spine. Essentially, these muscles are in charge of stabilizing your trunk and pelvis, so a strong core will enhance balance and stability as well as help prevent injuries.

Pilates exercises are a great way to get you to a flat tummy because of their abdominal focus and overall core challenge. In addition to all the core muscles already mentioned, Pilates exercises can challenge the rectus abdominis, your superficial abs, and the obliques, your lateral abs. When engaging your core, imagine a corset around your waistline hugging your abs in towards your spine.

Want to give your abs a run for their money? Here are three of my favorite ultra-challenging Pilates exercises. As you work through them, pay attention to detail by beginning with a slow and steady pace.

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