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exercise of the month

Pilates Leg Pull Front

February 2019

Aim

This exercise challenges the upper body strength, scapula stability and also pelvic stability

Starting Position

Come to an all fours position with the knees bent directly under the hips and place the hands on the floor directly under the shoulders.  Inhale to prepare.  Exhale to engage the core abdominals, take the right knee off the floor and extend the leg straight out behind the body to rest on the tip toes.  Repeat to raise the left leg until a full plank position is reached with the pelvis in neutral.

Action

Inhale - To prepare

Exhale - To engage the core abdominals, take the right foot off the floor and lift the leg straight up behind the body as far as a neutral pelvis can be maintained

Inhale - To return the right leg back down to the floor

Repeat with the left leg

Target Muscles

Pectorals, deltoid, triceps, core abdominals, gluteals, calves

Watchpoints

Ensure the core abdominals are engaged throughout to prevent the back from dipping or the bottom sticking up as the leg lifts off the floor

Maintain the length between the ears and shoulders

Try to avoid collapsing in between the shoulder blades.  Engage serratus anterior to maintain the distance in between the shoulder blades

Maintain length on both sides of the waist

Keep the hips and pelvis level throughout

Only lift the leg as high as a neutral spine can be maintained

Contra Indictions

Variation One (Adaptation)

This exercise may be performed without the leg raise (i.e. just hold the plank position)

Variation Two (Progression)

Once the right leg is raised, hold the position whilst the left foot dorsi flexes (i.e. perform a calf stretch with the left foot).  Then plantar flex the left foot and return the right leg to the floor.  Repeat with the opposite leg.

Contra-Indications

This exercise places extra stress on the wrist and shoulder joints.  Take extra care when attempting this exercise for certain clients with problems in these joints, as it may prove unsuitable for them.

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