Pilates: The Best Exercise For Toning Your Abs

Pilates is one of those exercises which utilises your core muscles in almost every move. If you want a flatter stomach and want to tone up quickly, Pilates is definitely the answer. These great exercises not only tighten your muscles but also build up your strength in your core area, which helps to improve posture and helps you to perform other exercises properly.

The Hundred

Lie flat on your back with your legs squeezed together and your arms by your sides. Lift both of your legs off the mat by a few inches, squeezing your buttocks and scooping your abs. Lift your head and look to your toes, then raise your arms over your thighs and pump your arms up and down. Take a long, steady inhale of breath for five pumps then exhale just as slowly for five pumps. Complete two to five sets and work your way up to 100 pumps – one set is ten pumps.

The Saw

Sit on the mat with your back straight and a long waist – open your arms straight out to your sides at shoulder-height and open your legs wider than your shoulders. Flex your feet from the ankles and anchor your bottom to the mat. As you rotate your trunk to the left and round over your left knee, inhale; press your right hand against the outer edge of your left foot and lift your back arm as high as possible, with your palms down. Exhale as you slide your right hand along your outer foot in three progressive sawing movements, whilst you draw back into your right hip to create a diagonal opposition for your oblique abs. Keep the weight of your lower body even on the mat, regardless of what your upper body is doing. Inhale and return to the starting position – perform three sets.

Double Leg Stretch

Hugging both of your knees to your chest with your head lifted and your elbows wide, inhale with control as you reach your legs forward and arms backwards, drawing your abs in deeply to support the spine. Exhale slowly as you deepen into the hug position, using the pull of your knees into your stomach and chest to expel more and more air from your lungs. Repeat this action six times.


Lie on you back with your hands layered, palm over palm, behind your lifted head, keeping your knees bent tightly into your chest. Inhale slowly and twist your torso to the left until your right elbow connects with your left knee. Straighten your right leg forward and hold it a few inches above the floor, before exhaling with control and twisting to the right, connecting your left elbow with your right knee and extending the left leg. Continue alternating sides, completing six sets of twists.


Lie flat on your back with long, sturdy arms by your sides. Squeeze your legs together tightly from the backs of the upper inner thighs. Inhale slowly as you lift your legs overhead, rolling back until you’re balanced on the middle of your shoulder blades and the backs of your arms. Point your toes and exhale with control as you roll back down your spine, leaning your body slightly to the right. When the right side of your glutes touches the mat, circle your legs to the left and inhale slowly. As you do this, roll the left side of your body whilst scooping your abs and lifting your bottom – continue reversing the circle direction each time to complete three sets.

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