Fitness Instructor Estelle Matthews guides us through a simple routine to tone the abdominal area which can easily be followed at home.
Read the full transcript »
Estelle Matthews: Hi there, I am Estelle Matthews, welcome to my ten minute exercise program. Today we are going to be focusing on abdominals and that means targeting exercises around the stomach area, which most of us will really be keen on doing especially if you've given birth or you haven't exercise for sometime, but do remember, even though we are sitting on the floor and some of these may look fairly relaxed, do seek medical advice before you do some of these exercises and make sure that you are building up gradually. Okay, so first of all, just relax the hands over the knees, do check that your shoulders are kind of chilling out rather than tense up here, relax them, and just lift the weight onto the toes. That therefore makes the legs work a little bit along with the abdominals. It's a contraction if you've been through childbirth recently you will recognize that word but this is nothing like the real thing, this is contracting the abdomen and pushing the lower back all the way down. Now, you'll feel not only the abdominals working but right around the inner thighs, the lower back and the bottom is involved. So, there is a lot happening in this one small exercise. The idea is not to loose any height so we are not collapsing down, let's give it a go on a beat. So one, two, three, here we go. We are down and back and lift and up. This becomes a lot easier as you get more fluid and more used to isolate in this area, push two. As you get started, the legs do start shake a little bit and that will soon ease off and again, push back. Now it's a great position also to involve the sideband of the abdominals or obliques and they are quite hard to target after you had a baby, so let's gives this a little alternative treatment here, you actually reach forward. Now you've probably seen dancers do this, that's why they have a fantastic stomach muscles. As a contract takes a while to work into this one but you are just literally shifting one shoulder forward and then the other one goes forward and you should never do this fast. Four, pull under and it's easy to find yourself holding your breath during this exercise, breath control here is vital, it's easy regular breathing. You might find it quite useful to breathe out on the way back and breathe in on the way forward but breathing is totally up to you, I can't tell you when, just feel through the exercise. Good, okay now taking one leg back. If this position isn't comfortable when you first start out then you can just bring it in a little bit or keep one leg across but let's try this position, feeling a stretch along here and this is parallel to the body. Okay, one hand by the knee, you reach out a little bit and take a stretch forward. Try to draw a semicircle on the carpet or along the flooring. Okay and come back again, that's the start of this exercise. Now you can build up to this, so a more advanced position is pulling right up leaning on the front hand and the other arm comes up by the air and you keep hold of that stretch. You feel it stretching right way through the abs, all the way through into the bottom, into those gluteus maximus and you come all the way back. Now when I say don't speed up too much, you can actually take this slightly fast to say you get a good swing holding up, two, three, four and over, two, three, four and hold, two, three, four and push, two, three, four and hold. Good, again, one, two, three, four and low, and one, two, three, four and lift. Once more, sweep forward and lift and back, last time, and hold it. Now of course we have to do that on the other side but in between the exercise, pummel the legs out on the floor. Now just to say that if you have a yoga mat or a towel, it's quite useful to use this during this whole session of exercises. We've got a carpet today, there is no need. So, try putting the other foot forward remembering that the leg stays parallel with the body. One hand down and then you can draw a line in front of you, semicircl
Copyright © 2005 - 2014 Healthline Networks, Inc. All rights reserved for Healthline.