Much better. With the abs working and head lifted, Steve has close to a long, straight line from ankle to ear. Do you also see that Steve's legs look stronger and more engaged with the midline? A sharp eye might note that his triceps (back of the arm) are turning on too.
There is still a lot of tension in the shoulders and neck. Steve has the core, but he's not fully trusting it yet. Can you see that the invitation here is for Steve to lengthen out of his ribcage letting his shoulders roll back and down? That would allow more freedom for his neck, open his chest, and connect him more to his core support. Imagine what a pretty, balanced line that will make.
You might be thinking: Wait a minute, the guy is precariously perched on a Pilates machine that could slide out from under him and you want him to lift his head and make a "pretty line". How am I even going to get there? The answer is that you are going to build up to it. Here are some exercises to get you started:
- Kneeling Arm/leg Reach - an easy exercise that starts building the back and belly strength you will need.
- Plank (of course)
- Swan - this is where you will find that lovely, supported extension out of the rib cage.
- Push Up - will improve arm and shoulder strength as well as help make the full body connection you need in order to maintain the form as it moves.
- Leg Pull Front - an intermediate move that will build pelvic and shoulder stability.
Before we go, thanks to Steve. This is a very challenging exercise and he did a great job with it. And, of course, thanks to instructor Irene Apostolides from Core Connection Pilates as well. Images like this are so helpful to all of us! If you have training pics, beginner or advanced, we'd love to see them. Contact me, your guide: email@example.com