With all the focus on sweating it out, it is quite easy to forget sometimes that Pilates classes are about strengthening your core by learning to recruit the deep trunk muscles. It is important to dispel the myth that your core is just your superficial muscles, as working repetitively just doing sit ups, is not only not going to give you the results you want. Sit ups are also very bad for you if done incorrectly.
Strength, stamina, and posture are the keys to strengthening your core and providing you with strong abdominals.
When we talk about the core in Pilates we refer to the following musculature including the transverse abdominals, internal and external obliques, serratus anterior, latissimus dorsi, spinal erectors, and, of course, the rectus abdominals.
Try the following tricks to help strengthen your core
The right posture is essential for strengthening your core if you continue to slouch you are never going to work the muscles you need to give you your strongest core. Instead imagine that you have a piece of string drawing the crown of your head to the sky. This will not only allow you to appear taller, it will also ensure that your core muscles are working.
Activate your deep core
You can strengthen your core without even getting out of your chair. How? Sit tall and imagine that a jellyfish is travelling up your spine as you exhale. In doing so you will feel that pelvic floor activating. This is great to practice if you have to sit for a long time as it helps to alleviate pressure on your discs.
Mix it up
You have all heard the saying that doing the same thing and expecting a different outcome is insanity. This is true with Pilates and strengthening your core. There are multiple muscles that require your attention in order to give you the desired outcome of strengthening your core. So mix it up with your exercises.