A growing percentage of Australians are finding themselves living between hotels or city apartments and their family home due to work commitments. This lifestyle makes it very difficult to commit to a fitness regime especially if you enjoy classes such as Pilates.
If you're reading this article I’m guessing you fall into this category.
Have found yourself wanting to try Pilates, but never in one spot long enough to commit to classes? Well, you’ve come to the right place!
At Online.Physio we are asked regularly about how people can strengthen their bodies, whether for rehabilitation purposes or general fitness, while travelling for work.
Our exercises are often Pilates inspired due to the beauty of obtaining an overall body workout that requires no equipment.
Pilates, contrary to popular beliefs, can be high level and challenge both females and males.
You can get your muscles burning, legs shaking and body toned while at the same time gain flexibility and mindfulness.
I have put together a 10 minute Pilates series that you can complete on a daily basis when stuck in a hotel room for work.
1. Pelvic Floor And Transversus Abdominis (A.K.A Core) Activation
Sounds scary I know, but one of the 5 fundamental principles in Pilates is ‘Centering.’ This means engaging your core and will allow you to perform the rest of this Pilates series more effectively by targeting the correct muscles. Take 5 minutes to watch this video for females and read this explanation for males.
Once you know how to activate your core, repeat on/off x 10 and 1 x 10 second hold.
2. Double Leg Float
Start by lying on your back with a finger width gap under your lower back, and your knees bent. Engage your core as you learnt in step 1 above. Bring one leg up to a 90 degree bend at the hip and knee, followed by the other leg. Bring one leg back down at a time to the starting position. Its important you feel the muscle under your belly button (transversus abdominis) tighten and brace or push out, and make sure your back doesn’t arch.
Repeat x 20 alternating the leg you bring up first.
Main Pilates Series
An all time favourite abdominal exercise that can be modified to all ability levels. Start by lying on your back with a finger width gap under your lower back, and both your legs straight at a 45 degree angle. Engage your core. Hover your arms by your side and pulse, sharp, quick pulses, counting to 100. Again it’s important you feel the transversus abdominis muscle tighten and not bulge, and make sure your back doesn’t arch. Also, BREATHE!
2. Single Leg Bridge
Lye on your back with a flat back, bend one knee and bring the other leg up to 90 degree bend at the hip and knee. Engage your core and squeeze your glute muscles (your butt!) to lift your hips. Aim for your hips to be straight while keeping your lower back flat. A useful imagery is to imagine your tucking your bottom under as you press your hips up. Lower back down to the start position.
Repeat x 20 each leg.
3. Plank Arm Reaches
Start in a plank position on either your hands or forearms. Engage your core and slightly tuck your bottom under to flatten your lower back. Keep your body as centred as possible while reaching one arm overhead.
Keep alternating arms until your reach 20 reps.
1. Roll up
Finally it’s important to cool your body down. Start by lying on your back with your arms stretching overhead and your legs out straight. Engage your core and flatten your lower back into the floor. Start rolling up with your arms, tuck your chin in and then imagine your peeling up one vertebra at a time until you are touching your toes. Roll back down in the reverse fashion until your lying flat.
Repeat x 10.
2. Chest Opener Stretch
Start by lying on your side with your knees bent and arms stretched out in front. Lift your top arm and twist as if you are aiming to tap the floor behind you. Try to keep your knees touching to isolate the stretch in your upper back and chest.
If you have any serious injuries then this Pilates series may not be for you. I would highly recommend speaking to one of our Physios at Online.Physio for a tailored exercise program.