The Best Pilates Toning & Resistance Training Exercises

The Best Pilates Toning & Resistance Training Exercises

There are many types of Pilates toning and resistance training exercises that will accelerate weight loss and keep your body tight and toned. Pilates is a fat burning workout that not only tones your muscles but increases flexibility and strengthens your core. Pilates resistance training can be performed using Pilates equipment (such as strength bands or medicine balls), or using your own body weight. Below are some Pilates toning and resistance training exercises that will get you quick results if performed regularly in addition to eating a healthy diet. These exercises can be done at home without the use of Pilates equipment.

1. Straight Leg Pull Down

Start by positioning your body face down in a push-up position with arms extended; keep your back and legs straight. Lift one leg up toward the ceiling; hold that position for a few seconds, then lower your leg back down to your starting position. Repeat this exercise with the other leg; alternate legs until you reach 10 repetitions or you start to fatigue. 

2. Teaser

The teaser is like a sit-up and is an excellent fat burning abdominal workout. To begin the exercise lie flat on your back with your legs straight and extended up at a 45 degree angle from the floor. Your arms should be straight and extended above your head. Reach upward with your arms (toward your legs) until they are parallel with your legs; your legs and torso should now form a V-shape. Hold this position for a few seconds; then lower your upper body back to the starting position and repeat (up to 10 times or you start to fatigue).

3. Parallel Frog

Lie on your back with your knees pulled in toward your chest. This is your starting position. Flex your feet and slowly straighten your legs outward 45 degrees from the floor. Hold that position; then pull your knees back in toward your chest. Repeat up to 10 times. Flex your legs and your abs during this exercise to really feel the burn.

4. Can-Can

Start in a sitting position with your knees pulled in toward your chest. Straighten your arms behind you for support. Slowly rotate your hips and knees to the right toward the floor while keeping your knees bent. Straighten your legs slowly; hold this position then bend your knees again and pull them back toward your chest. Rotate your hips and knees over to the left and slowly straighten your legs again. Hold this position; then bend your knees and rotate your hips and knees back to the right and repeat (up to 10 repetitions on each side).

5. Hundreds

Lie on your back with your legs straight and extended up 90 degrees from the floor. Extend your arms alongside your body and parallel to the floor; keep them straight. While pumping your arms up and down in quick short movements, lower your legs to 45 degrees from the floor and hold this position; raise your legs back to the 90 degree position while continuing to pump your arms. Repeat until you raise and lower your legs 10 times or until you pump your arms up and down roughly 100 times.