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The Best Pilates Workouts for Abs

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The Best Pilates Workouts for Abs

Pilates is a popular fitness method that builds strength, flexibility, posture and, most importantly, your abdominals. Pilates is great for strengthening your core and sculpting your way to a bikini body.

Unlike sit-ups and crunches, Pilates workouts allow for more range of motion in your abdominals and can be more effective at building muscle. There are a few moves that stand out above the rest when it comes to getting a six-pack. These Pilates workouts are perfect for beginners, experts, or anyone looking to tighten up their abdominals.

Roll-Up

The roll-up is like the sit-up’s smarter, more successful older sister. To do a roll-up, lie flat on your back with your legs straight and arms extended above your head next to your ears. Bring your arms forward, tilt your chin down, and slowly curl your body up to touch your toes. Do eight to 10 sets a day, three times a week.

The Hundred

Not only will the hundred give you killer abs, it’ll also work out the muscles in your glutes. Lie flat with your legs squeezed together and your arms by your sides. Lift both legs a few inches off the mat while squeezing your buttocks and tightening your abs. Lift your head to look at your toes. Raise your arms over your thighs and pump your arms up and down. Inhale for five pumps and exhale for five pumps. Do two to five sets of 10 reps to work up to 100 pumps.

Double Leg Stretch

Don’t let the name fool you: this workout does way more than just stretch your legs. Hug your knees into your chest with your head lifted forward and your elbows wide. As you reach your legs forward and arms back in an oppositional stretch, take a deep breath in. Exhale slowly as you pull your legs back towards your chest. Repeat six times.

Crisscross

Lie on your back with your hands behind your head, as if you were prepping to do a sit-up, and bring your knees tucked into your chest. Take a slow, deep breath in and twist your torso to the left until your right elbow touches your left knee, straightening your right leg forward and holding it a few inches above the mat. Exhale and twist right, so your left elbow connects to your right knee, while extending your left leg. Complete six sets and alternate sides.

Teaser I

Judging from experience, this is the trickiest and most demanding Pilates abs workout. The challenge of the workout though makes for a six-pack, no doubt about it. Lie flat on your back, with your arms over your head and your legs squeezed tightly together. Take a deep breath in and bring your arms forward, keeping them shoulder-width apart. Once your arms are parallel to your thighs, slowly roll up towards your feet. Exhale slowly as you descend and slowly roll back down. Continue for three more sets.

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