Prenatal pilates has basically been my savior during this pregnancy. Gentle yet effective toning movements have helped me relieve pain, strengthen areas that become weaker and just basically feel good! I put together this Prenatal Pilates Stability Ball Workout because it is a perfect blend of strength and fluidity.
Seated on the ball with legs wide enough to allow space for the belly and feet flat on the mat, rolldown starting from your head and allowing your back and spine to round until your fingertips touch the floor. Take a breath then rollup stacking the spine one vertabrae at a time with head coming up last. Continue the rolldowns 4-6 times.
Stand on the mat with the ball in front of you, feet hip width apart in parallel with heels directly behind the toes. Place your hands on the ball then roll the ball out sitting down like you are sitting into a chair keeping your back flat and your spine in neutral position. Stand up squeezing through the glutes keeping your hands on the ball. Repeat 8-16 times.
Stand with your legs wide toes and knees turned out to the side with the ball in front of you and hands on the ball. Keeping your back flat and spine neutral, squat down into a plie lowering the seat towards the floor and bending the knees out to the side while rolling the ball out in front of you. Stand up squeezing the glutes and rolling the ball back in towards you. Repeat 8-16 times.
Side to Side Lunge
Stand with the ball in front of you with toes and knees turned out to the side. Bend your left knee lunging to the left side and sweep the ball toward your left foot with your right hand keeping your spine straight. Lunge to the right sweeping the ball towards the right foot with the left hand. Continue lunging side to side for 8-16 reps.
Stand facing the side with the left foot in front and the right leg extended straight behind you with your heel lifted. Keep the ball by the front left foot and keep your right hand on the ball. Bend your right leg and drop the knee towards the floor into a lunge position. Straighten through the right knee to return to start. Repeat 8-16 times then switch sides and repeat on the opposite leg.
Seated Spine Twist
Sit on the ball with feet flat and about hip width apart. Extend arms to the side. On an exhale, twist torso to the right keeping feet and knees planted. Inhale and come back to center. Exhale and repeat to the left for one repetition. Repeat for 8 reps.
Sit on the ball with legs slightly wider than hip width with feet flat and knees bent. Extend arms out to the sides. On an inhale, twist to the right side. Exhale reach the left arm to the outside of the right foot “sawing” the pinkie toe off then inhale sit up and exhale return back to center. Repeat the entire series to the opposite side for one repetition. Repeat for 6-8 reps.
Start seated on the ball with your feet flat and your knees bent. Place hands on the ball by your sides. Pull your abs in around the baby and use your lower abdominals to lift one foot off the mat keeping the knee bent on an exhale. Inhale as you lower your foot back down to the mat. Repeat on the opposite leg. Continue alternating sides for 8-16 reps.
Knee Lift Extension
Start as you would for Knee Lifts. This time as you lift one foot off the mat, extend that leg straight maintaining your balance by hugging your abs around the baby keeping the core engaged. Place that foot back down on the mat and repeat on the opposite leg. Continue alternating sides for 8-16 reps.
Start seated on the ball with feet flat on the mat about hip width apart. Place hands behind your head with elbows bent. Exhale as you flex your upper body forward for a seated crunch then inhale as you release back up to the starting position. Repeat for 8-12 reps.
Start as you would for the Seated Crunch. This time as you exhale, crunch your left elbow towards your left hip engaging your oblique muscles. Inhale and come back to center. Exhale and repeat to the right side. Inhale back to center. Continue alternating sides for 10-12 reps.
Hug a Beachball
Start sitting on the ball with feet flat and knees bent, arms out to the side. Exhale as you round forward, tucking the pelvis slightly forward, and bring your arms in front of you like you are hugging a big beach ball. Inhale as you stack the spine and straighten back up, opening the arms to the side. Repeat 8-12 times engaging your core.
Hug a Beachball Obliques
Start in the same position for Hug a Beachball. This time, exhale and twist your torso to the right and round forward, tucking your pelvis slightly to the right, while you round your arms and hug a big imaginary beachball. Inhale and stack your spine to come up. Repeat to the opposite side. Continue alternating sides for 8-10 reps.
Sit on the mat with the ball in front of you with hands on the ball. Take the feet as wide as or slightly wider than the mat with feet flexed and legs straight. Sit up tall (note: you can sit on a cushion or blanket if you have a hard time sitting up tall). Exhale and roll the ball out in front of you as you round forward in your spine. Inhale as you roll the ball back in and stack the spine back up to a sitting position. Repeat 4-8 times.
Spine Stretch Extension
Repeat the Spine Stretch moves but this time after you roll the ball out, flatten out the back and pick the ball up raising the ball overhead as you lift the chest with a flat back. Lower the ball back down onto the mat and roll in to the seated position. Repeat 4-8 times.
Sit on the mat as you would for Spine Stretch but take your legs slightly wider with the feet flexed. Place your right hand on the ball and extend the left arm out to the side. Inhale and twist towards the left side. Exhale as you reach your right hand and the ball towards your left foot hinging from the waist. Inhale come back up. Exhale return the torso to center. Repeat to the opposite side. Continue alternating for 4-8 reps.
Seated on the mat with knees wide and bent and sitting tall through the spine (note: place a cushion or blanket under your seat if you are having trouble sitting tall). Hold the ball with each hand with the elbows bent. Press the ball overhead as you straighten the arms. Return the ball back to chest height. Repeat 10-16 times.
Start as you did for Overhead Presses. This time, extend the arms straight out in front of you at chest height. Keeping the arms straight, lift the arms straight overhead without popping the ribs or arching the back. Lower the arms back to chest height. Repeat 10-16 times.
Sit on the mat with the ball behind your back and your knees bent with your feet flat. Rest your fingertips down by your sides. Then take one arm up overhead allowing the other arm to reach long. Switch and bring the opposite arm overhead. Continue switching one arm over the head then the other for shoulder mobilization and chest opening. Repeat for 16 reps (or however many feel great!).
Seated Leg Extension
Start seated on the mat with legs extend in front of you and the ball in front of you. Place your left leg on the ball keeping your right leg straight on the mat (you can bend the knee if it is more comfortable). Place your hands behind you for support but sit up tall without sinking too much weight into your hands. Bend your left knee drawing the ball in closer to you then extend your left leg out. You can do this in parallel or in a turned out position (knee turns out to the side) depending on the size of your belly and your comfort. Repeat 8-12 times on one side then switch sides and repeat.
Kneeling Cat Cow
Kneeling on the mat with the ball in front of you and your seat off your heels, articulate and roll down through your spine as you push the ball out to a flat back so your body is hinged forward. Round through your spine as you pull the ball back in towards you. Roll up through your spine articulating one vertebrae at a time with head coming up last to return to start. Repeat 4-8 times.
Thread the Needle
Start kneeling on the mat with one hand on the ball and arm straight. Keep your seat lifted off your heels and place the other hand on your forehead with the elbow bent. Twist open towards the bent arm looking to the side. Then release the hand from the forehead and thread that arm underneath the arm on the ball getting a twist through the upper back. Return back to start and repeat 6-8 times.
Kneeling Leg Pulses
Start kneeling on the mat with the ball in front of you. Place both forearms on the ball and firmly press into the ball. Make sure your knees are underneath your hips and pull your abs away from the mat. Extend one leg straight behind you. From this position you can lift and lower your leg 8 times then hold the leg up at hip height and pulse it 8-16 times. Repeat with the opposite leg extended back. Use your core to help you balance!
Start in the same position as Kneeling Leg Pulses. This time flex the foot that is extended back. Keeping the leg at hip height, bend the knee bringing the heel towards the seat then straighten the leg back out. Repeat 8-12 times then switch sides and repeat on the opposite side.
Start kneeling on the mat with the ball at your left hip. Extend your right leg out to the side and plant your foot on the mat. Lean the left side of your body over the ball with hands behind your head. Keeping your right foot pressing into the mat, use your obliques to lift your torso up on the ball for an oblique lift. Lower your torso back over the ball. Repeat 8-10 times then switch to the opposite side and repeat.
Side Leg Lifts
Start in the same position as Oblique Lifts. This time place your left hand on the mat but keep your right hand behind your head (note: you can place your right hand on the ball for extra support). Point your right toe and lift the leg off the mat up to hip height. Tap the toe back down on the mat. Continue repeating the lift and lower of the leg for 10-12 reps then switch sides and repeat on the left leg.
Front Kick Back Kick
Start in the same position as the Side Leg Lifts. This time lift the right leg up to hip height. Flex through the right foot and bring the leg forward in front of you keeping your pelvis and hips still and stable then point through the toes as you draw the leg back behind you. Continue kicking the leg forward and back for 6-8 reps then switch sides and repeat on the other side.
Start in the same position as Side Leg Lifts. This time, lift your right leg up to hip height then bend your right knee and extend the leg in front of you. Keeping the leg straight, sweep is back behind you before bending in to start the series again, just as if you are riding a bicycle. Continue with the bicycle movement for 6-8 reps then reverse directions (pedaling backwards) before switching to the other side.
Start in the same position as Side Leg Lift. This time keep both knees bent and stacked. Keeping your toes glued together, open the top right knee up to the sky then lower back down towards the bottom left leg. Continue opening and closing the top knee keeping the toes together the entire time. Repeat 8-10 times then switch and repeat on the opposite leg.
Quadruped Bend Extend
Start kneeling on the mat with hands under shoulders and knees under hips. Place the left foot on the ball with the toe pointed. Bend the left knee in drawing the ball closer to you then extend the leg and push the ball away from you. Continue bending and extending the leg for 12-16 reps then switch sides and repeat.
Check out some more ideas in the below video and stay tuned for the full-length workout coming your way soon!
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.