8 Pilates ab exercises

Target the abs with this Pilates ab exercise serie of eight. With a combination of classic exercises and new variations we dig in deep into the abdominals and go for ad nice Pilates ab workout. This is a heavy serie to do in one take, so just pauze in between or ago to the single exercises. This ab serie is great for pelvic stability and core training. If your neck or back is hurting, always stop. For other exercises on topic, go to the Pilates exercise series section with series like 11 exercises for a weak lower back and 20 basic Pilates exercises. Also check out the total body Pilates workouts. Have fun!

Single Exercises


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Ab exercise 5

8 single Pilates ab exercises

These eight Pilates ab exercises work on strengthening the abdominals, especially the transvere abdominals, which are great for posture and pelvic stability. Please note that training along is at own risk. It can be dangerous and hazardous for your health. Also make sure you see a physician first to make sure you’re fit enough to do these exercises. So keep it safe!
Also with ab exercises you have to watch out extra for neck pain and/or lower back pain. Always stop when you have pain in general and especially in the case of your neck and lower back. It’s a sign that you can’t hold up your head anymore using the abs.

1. Single leg stretch

Ab exercise 1

A great warm up and start for an Pilates ab exercise serie! This very basic exercise is great for pelvic stability training. The stretching of the legs gives a lateral stability challenge to the pelvic area. Make sure you don’t drop your legs to the floor and keep your upper body stable as well!

2. The lowering

Ab exercise 3

We try to lower one leg at the time here with a neutral and stable pelvis and spine. Try to hold your legs from the abs instead of the lower back. See if you can feel the difference. Test your limit as to when you feel there is a shift from the abs to the lower back muscles.

3. Single straight leg stretch

Ab exercise 3

Heavy Pilates ab exercise! You are really working the abs here and hitting the Pilates sweetspot: the transverse abdominal muscle(s). When you straighthen your legs as much as possible, you will feel a burn in the waist, this is what you need. Just above the pelvis on both sides!

4. Stable leg stretch

Ab exercise 4

This is the stable litle brother of the Pilates single leg stretch. It works on pelvic stability. You have to make sure you don’t bring back your knee to much. That’s the whole point of this Pilates exercise. Its’s also nice to work with a neutral spine and to lay the head on the mat while working the abs.

5. Lower leg cross

Ab exercise 5

This Pilates exercise might not seem much at first, but as you try to hold still both the upper legs and the pelvis, you will feel it! Nice pelvic stability exercise which also very much focusses on ab/hip muscle activity. Don’t shake your knees too much, that might hurt them.

6. Reaching

Ab exercise 5

Great Pilates exercise for all of the abs. We are trying to aim for a upper body turn-movement here with a stable pelvis. The twist works the lower ab, obliques, tranverse abs while the reaching works the main abs (sixpack-area). Lovely exercise for a total ab workout!

7. Crossing legs

Ab exercise 7

The crossing legs is advanced territory for Pilates abs exercises. t’s hard to just move the arms and legs while you hold still the upper body and head. If you are able to do it, everything will fire! The ab abs are working, the pelvis and hips are working and the legs start burning as well.

8. Inverted hundred

Ab exercise 8

The inverted hundred is also advanced territory. You have to know how to stabilize your head from the abs/upper body. If you use the neck muscles, then this is a horrible excercise. The challenge is to use the abs, then it’s quite fun!

More Pilates exercises and workouts

That’s it for the Ab exercises on this page. You can also create your own Pilates workout by taking exercises from the Pilates exercises encyclopedia. They are grouped in ab exercises, back exercises, neck and shoulder exercises and general exercises. Amongst those exercises are the 20 basic Pilates exercises. Along with the Pilates for beginners, this is a great way to start doing Pilates. If you want to work on the lower back because of lower back pain or tension, then see the Pilates for the lower back page. You will find exercise series there like 11 Pilates exercises for a weak lower back. For Pilates exercises on topic, check out the Pilates exercise series. There are also free Pilates exercises and workouts to do for which you can sign up on those pages. Top 5 Pilates exercises for at home and 5 great Pilates workouts for at home are two examples. And of course there are a lot of great Pilates workouts to do.