Pilates Spinal Rolldown – Strengthen the Abdominals


Hello, and welcome to Inner Strength Pilates.

I’m just going to show you now a great exercise that’s going to both work your abdominals and get you a nice flat tummy, but also articulate and stretch the spine for you at the same time.

Alright, great, let’s get started. So find yourself a mat or a blanket that you can lay on, place that on the ground and then let’s get started, ok? So what we’re going to do is we’re going to start sitting up nice and tall through the spine. You want to flex your toes back so that your toes are reaching back towards your chest.

Ok now this is quite a hard exercise so what we want to do is make sure that we are switching on our core correctly. If you don’t know how to switch your core on correctly, please, please make sure that you do see a proper Pilates instructor to train you how to do it correctly.

It’s not something that you can learn over a video which is why I’m not going to show you how to switch on your core, so yeah, you really need to make sure that you get your core working correctly, otherwise you can injure yourself whilst trying to do Pilates without using the correct core stability, ok?

But for those of you who know how to do the breathing correctly, use your pelvic floor muscles correctly and switch on your core correctly, then let’s go ahead!

Ok, now this is quite hard so you might want to find something to help keep your feet down, otherwise your feet might lift up during the exercise, so something like some ankle weights or just something that’s quite heavy, place them on your ankles so that your legs are nice and supported there.

Alright, so what we’re going to do is we’re going to breathe in to prepare, breath in into the backs of the ribcage and then exhale, switch on your tummy and pelvic floor, switch on the core, keep breathing out and start to roll down through the spine.

You’re going to keep rolling down, toes reaching back towards you until you lay down nice and flat. Breath in is to hold here; now the movement happens all on the breath out, we’re going to roll back up one vertebrae at a time.

Breath in to prepare for six counts, exhale, switch on your tummy, lift your pelvic floor muscles, chin in towards the chest, and exhale all the way throughout the movement to come back up.

Ok, if you’re finding it easy, take the weights off. If you want a little bit of help but not with the weights you can grab a Theraband if you’ve got one, tuck it behind the feet and hold onto the Theraband just to help support you again because it is quite hard to control if your core is not strong enough.

So breath in to prepare for six counts into the backs of the ribcage, sitting up nice and tall, and exhale, engage your core, keep breathing out, keep the core switched on, pelvic floor pulling up and slowly roll down one vertebrae at a time.

Breath in is to hold and exhale to roll back up. Once again, if you want to challenge yourself, no weights, no Theraband, just your core strength supporting you completely. Alright, so let’s do ten of them.

Nice and careful, make sure your core is switching on the whole way throughout the movement and imagine that you’ve got a spike in each vertebrae. I want one spike to plant down into the mat or the ground one at a time.

Breath in is to hold once you’re laying down nice and flat, and then on the breath out, tuck the chin in towards the chest and pull out one spike at a time so not two vertebrae moving at a time, really tuck and curl the spine so we get lots of articulation through the spine.

Here we go for ten, so grab your ankle weights or little weights on the ankles if you need or your Theraband and here we go. So breath in, exhale. Breath in, breath out. Breath in, sitting nice and tall there, make sure your shoulders are relaxed the whole time, exhale, lots of space between the shoulder and the earlobe.

Breath in, breath out. And you want to make sure that you’re breathing in, keep going. Breath in; make sure you’re breathing in nice and deep, and breath out. Otherwise, if you don’t inhale enough air, you’re not going to have enough air to breathe out throughout the movement.

Breath in nice and deep now, make sure you get lots of air in the backs of the ribs and exhale, use that air, exhale throughout the whole movement to come back up. Breath in, breath out. Breath in, breath out. Breath in, breath out.

And the slower you go, the harder it is. Breath in, so the slower that you curl up, the harder your abdominal and core must work. Alright? So keep going with that and if you want a couple of variations, then when you come up you can go into a hamstring stretch, so grab onto the toes and reach right forward in between. So breath in to prepare, breath out is for your tummy and pelvic floor to roll down one vertebrae at a time.

Breath in is to hold, and breath out is to roll up and go into your hamstring stretch and hold the hamstring stretch throughout the breath in. And exhale so you get that nice hamstring stretch, exhale, roll back down with your spine, breath in is to hold.

Exhale, draw your chin in towards the chest, start rolling back up and go straight into your hamstring stretch there, try and get the head and the chest to touch the legs, lengthening the legs nice and long. That’s it, breath in is to hold, breath out is to roll back down. Excellent, well done. So you should be really feeling your tummy working quite strong there.

Now if you want to make it a little bit harder, you can actually just roll down half way, breath in to hold and breath out to roll back up. So I’ll show you that exercise now.

Bring your hands here like a genie position, make sure your shoulders aren’t lifted, drop them down, breath in is to hold, exhale for your tummy and pelvic floor just to roll down to here. Breath in is to hold, breathe in for six counts and exhale, switch on your core and breathe out to roll back up. Breath in, exhale.

Now again you can go into your hamstring stretch there if you like. Breath in, breath out, roll down halfway through. Breath in to hold and breath out to roll back up.

Excellent, so I hope you’ve enjoyed that exercise, I hope your tummy is starting to feel a little bit stronger now and I really look forward to our next video next month. Alright, enjoy. Take care and I’ll speak to you then.

About Tamara Gollan

Tamara Gollan. As the owner of Inner Strength Pilates Studio, my mission is to teach people how they can feel amazing within themselves. At Inner Strength Pilates, we specialise in Rehabilitation and Pregnancy. We cater for all individual needs.
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