When we think about Pilates, it’s easy to dismiss it as the type of workout only wellness influencers with killer abs do. But Pilates has a lot to offer beyond aesthetics—especially when it comes to strengthening your balance. We tapped one of LA’s most coveted Pilates instructors and celebrity fitness expert, Lex Fish, for her top three moves to increase balance. Best of all? You can do all of them from pretty much anywhere.
3 Pilates Moves For Balance That You Can Pretty Much Do Anywhere
Meet the Expert
First, What Are The Benefits of Strengthening Your Balance?
Let's face it, we could all use more balance in our lives – both literally and figuratively. Thankfully, there are some tangible ways to introduce more of it into your workout routine, whether you’re in the gym or on-the-go.
“I find that many people don’t have balance at all,” Fischer says. ”For a full-body workout, standing stability exercises are the best thing you can do. You’re using your own body weight and strengthening your core at the same time. These poses are the foundation of my practice and what I teach.” Fischer shares.
She adds, “The number one reason that injuries happen as we get older is a lack of balance. I’ve shifted my whole movement mindset towards longevity, and how these routines can build a healthier lifestyle now and in the future.”
Ahead, her top three moves for building up your balance.
1. Alternating Leg Extensions
It may sound easy on paper, but try this one for yourself and you’ll be humbled. Standing straight with your feet hips-width apart and your arms raised above your head, roll your shoulders back and down.
Raise your right knee to your chest, extend it in front of you for two seconds, then place it back down next to your left foot. Next, raise your left knee to your chest, extend out in front of you and place your left foot back next to your right. Repeat 10x, remembering to engage your core for stability and making sure to move slowly so you don’t use momentum for the lift.
2. Lateral Curtsy Lunge
This combo-move involves a healthy dose of mind-body connection, which is essential to Pilates as a whole.
Step 1: Raise your right knee to your chest, before extending your leg into a lateral side lunge to the right, with your weight in your heels and your back flat. The left leg is extended long.
Step two: Raise your right knee to your chest and center yourself for a breath before placing your right foot behind your left in a curtsy lunge position, bending both knees slightly. Return your right knee to your chest, and continue with the next lateral side lunge.
Repeat this combo 10x on each side.
3. Reverse Lunge Knee Drives
Standing tall with your hands interlocked behind your head, keep your shoulders away from your ears and your elbows wide. Raise your right knee to your chest, before extending it behind you for a reverse lunge. To activate your balancing skills, draw your right foot back through center, raising your knee 45 degrees away from your body and fully extend your leg before returning to a deep reverse lunge. Repeat 10x on each side.
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