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Oblique Muscle Exercise - Roll Back and Twist

with Toning Ball


Updated July 28, 2012

Looking for a great waist? Work your obliques. Your oblique muscles compress, forward bend and rotate your trunk opposite your pelvis. In this oblique exercise, we put all of those actions together and add a weighted toning ball (optional) for a little extra challenge and feedback.

This exercise builds on Pilates exercise the roll back.

Sit Tall with Toning Balls

oblique exercise
    Sit on the mat with your legs together, knees bent enough to let your feet be flat on the floor.
  • Press down into the floor with your sit bones to help lengthen your spine as you reach the crown of your head toward the ceiling.
    Use this move to feel an engagement of the pelvic floor and to pull your abdominal muscles in and up.
  • Inhale: Slide your shoulder blades down your back as you lift the toning balls in front of you, chest height, with straight arms.

Rotate the Upper Body

oblique exerisse
  • Exhale: Lift up out of your hips as your abdominal muscles scoop in to rock your pelvis back off your sit bones.
  • As you roll back, your upper body rotates to the right as the right arm opens to the side. Go as far as you can while keeping your pelvis stable, facing front.
Tips: Don't let your gaze get too far ahead of your hand.
Make sure this is a lift to roll back, not a collapse into your low back. It's a lifted curve. The abs in, lift, and turn action that makes this a great exercise for the oblique muscles.

Control and Lift to Return

oblique exercise
  • Inhale: Use your inhale and a press through the feet, and lift through the inner thighs, pelvic floor and abs to lift and rotate your spine back to sitting. You might feel a natural sequence in undoing your rotation as you press down to lift.
    Your arm will come with your shoulder. It does not move ahead or drag behind it.
  • Repeat to the other side.
  • 3 - 5 Sets.

  • More Oblique Exercises

    pilates spine twist
    (c)Marguerite Ogle
    Add to oblique exercises workouts with these Pilates exercises:

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