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Video:Pilates Chest Lift Ball Exercise

with Lesley Powell

Want to perform a flawless chest lift using an exercise ball? See how it's done.See Transcript

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Transcript:Pilates Chest Lift Ball Exercise

Hi! I am Lesley Powell, the director of Movements Afoot, a pilates wellness studio in mid-Manhattan. This is Mandy Chan, one of my Pilates teachers at our studio. She will be demonstrating the chest lift ball exercise.

Abs During Chest Lift

We are going to use a 65 cm ball. We are going to do a great exercise: the chest lift and then with rotation. All Pilates exercises you want to get the abdominals to hollow in. If you are bulging the abdominal muscles out, you are not going work deeply. Learning to hollow is what brings the abdominal wall in. The goal with abdominals is to train them to improve your posture. Better posture is key to better looking torso.

Pilates Exercise Ball Chest Lift Set Up

To start, sit on the ball with your legs parallel. Use a mat if the floor is slippery. Inhale and feel the breath move down. Exhale and feel the breath rise up. Adding on, inhale and feel your lower ribs expand. Exhale and lift your pelvic floor and lower abs up your spine. Inhale with new wide lower ribs Exhale, lift and hollow the lower abs so much, the abs press the lower spine towards the ball. Slowly walk your feet forward as if they are on railroad tracks. Once the upper ribs are on the ball, release your spine backwards on the ball. Your hips should be relaxed. The fold of the hip in front should be soft. If you are hardening this femoral fold, you are taking important work away from your core workout.

Exercise Ball Chest Lift

Raise your arms towards the ceiling. Imagine that you holding a ball in front of you. Inhale and feel your ribs expand into the ball. Exhale and hollow the lower abs. Inhale again. Exhale and bow towards your knees. Inhale lower the spine. Adding on, exhale and bow forward. Inhale and rotate your upper body to the left. Feel how your left rib imprints more. Exhale and bow center Inhale and twist to the right Exhale and bow forward. Inhale and lay backwards

Chest Lift Tips

Remember the movement is initiated from the spine. Feel how the ribs roll on the ball. The arms should stay in the same relationship to your shoulders. Otherwise you are initiating through your shoulders and taking work away from the abs.

Avoid Moving Shoulders

See how Mandy is moving from her shoulders. This bad version takes the work away from your core.

Around the World Exercise

Now we are going to do 'around the world.' Inhale your ribs into the ball. Exhale and bow forward. Inhale and rotate to the left and the lie backwards. Exhale and rotate to the right and bow forwards. Inhale and rotate to the right and sequence to lie backwards. Exhale and rotate to the left and then bow forwards.

The lower body should remain still throughout this exercise. The action is the ribs pivoting on the ball using all of your abs muscles.

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