Stretches for the Lower Abdominals

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Certain stretches are absolutely great at working out areas of your body like your lower abdominals. Find out about stretches for the lower abdominals with help from a certified Pilates instructor in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Pilates, Stretching & Abs
Promoted By Zergnet

Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Sarah from Pilates by Sarah Luna. Today, we're going to talk about stretching the abdominals so that you can have a longer torso. So, you're going to start by laying down on your mat, hands underneath the shoulders and we'll start with a Gentle Swan. So, hands will press into the floor and you're going to lift your chest and your sternum up, lifting the chin slightly. Hold that for a second so you get a good stretch in your stomach, then exhale and lower yourself down. Again, let's repeat that, pressing down into the mat, lift the chest, make sure your shoulders are drawing down your back, shoulder blades are slightly engaged and abdominals are still active and holding in towards your spine even though you're stretching them out. Exhale and lower back. Good. After you've done about three or four of those and you feel like your upper back is somewhat warmed up, come onto your hands and your knees. Your hands will go underneath your shoulders, knees hip width apart underneath your hips. Starting in a flat back, exhale and contract your belly, round the back, press up into your thoracic spine and take your chin down into your chest. Then, reverse that and open the chest and look towards the ceiling, taking your tailbone behind you. Now, this is where you're really getting the best stretch for those low abdominals and the whole, entire abdominal cavity. And then release it, crown of the head towards the tailbone, round the back, stretch out the spine and reverse it again, opening up the chest, taking the sternum up and forward and lifting the chin. Go ahead and do four to six of these to really get the most benefit out of the stretch. The last exercise, you're going to lay all the way down on the floor. Grab both heels in towards your gluts. Now, this is a pretty advanced exercise from the Pilates method, so use your discretion of doing this exercise. You're going to press your feet away from you and lift the chest and feel a stretch through the chest as well as through the stomach. Try not to let go of those feet and keep lifting up, up, up until you get the best stretch and release. Do about two or three of those in sets of pretty intense one. So, those three exercises are great way to stretch out your stomach and have a nice long torso.


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