Pilates Exercises

Gain Core Strength & Stability with These Four Exercises.

Core strength is vital for body stability, controlling movement, and your back’s ability to withstand stress. Here are some of Laura Wilson’s recommended core exercises that you can easily do anywhere.

Leg Taps

Great core-strengthening exercise for improving abdominal and back stability. The goal of this exercise is to maintain the back and abs strong and stable as the legs move.

Begin on your back, spine flat with legs in tabletop position (90-degree bend at hips and knees).

Inhale: Keeping you knee bent at a 90-degree angle, lower one foot towards the mat.

Exhale: Using your abs, pull the leg back up to tabletop

Repeat 10x each side. Then do another set of 10, lowering both legs together. To increase the challenge, perform same sequence with straight legs.

Remember to keep your back flat. Only go as low in the range of motion as your spine stays flat.

Full Roll Down

A good mobility exercise for the spine while the core is actively engaged to control the movement.

Begin seated tall on your sit-bones with legs extended in front of you (as straight as possible, but bent knees is OK). Arms are reaching forward. 

Inhale: Prepare

Exhale: Pull the abs in and slowly roll back, leading with your lower back, then articulating one vertebra at a time until you are always the way down on your back. Then reach your arms back over your head. 

Inhale: Reach Your arms up to the ceiling and nod your chin toward your chest

Exhale: Slowly roll back up to the start position

Repeat 5-10x.

Try to roll back and up as slowly as possible.  Holding light free weights or using ankle weights help with controlling the motion.

Side Bend with Leg Lift

A perfect exercise for strengthening both the side body and lower back. 

Start laying on your side, propped on your bottom elbow.  Legs are together and stacked. Top arm is bent with your hand on the mat.

Inhale: Prepare

Exhale: Keep your legs connected, and lift them off the mat.  Think of squeezing your hip up to your ribcage.

Inhale: Slowly lower you legs down to the mat

Repeat 10-20x on each side.


Great core exercise that provides strength and stability within the shoulder girdle and abdominal area. Choose a plank variation that best fits your needs.

Start in a quadruped position, hands stacked under the shoulders and knees under the hips. 

Engage your shoulders and abs, then carefully step one foot back at a time, coming into a plank position. 

Continue to breathe. With each exhale, engage your abs a little deeper, like a belt tightening around your waist.

Be sure your body is in one long line from your head to your heels. 

Actively squeeze your abs and glutes to maintain the position and protect your spine. 

Press the floor away to engage your shoulders. 

Hold the plank as long as you can without losing form.  

If a full plank is too hard on your wrists or back, start with a knee or elbow plank then graduate up to the full plank as you get stronger.

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