While you may think of core moves when you hear anyone talk about Pilates, that’s not the only muscle group the exercise modality works—and this lower-body mat Pilates workout will prove it!
In this 20-minute video, which is the second installment of Sweat With SELF’s Beginner Mat Pilates series, you’ll focus on every part of your glutes. NASM-certified personal trainer and Pilates instructor Emilie Battle and Pilates instructor Zachary Bergfelt will take you through a whole series of lower-body Pilates moves—and some killer variations of each—to really get your glutes firing. And while you’ll be primarily focusing on your glutes, your core will also get some work in too!
In the workout, you’ll begin with a dynamic warm-up (think standing roll-downs and downward dogs) to get your blood flowing and warm up your muscles, especially those muscles in your lower half that’ll really be working in this routine. Then you’ll get into the real work, which uses common lower-body Pilates exercises and their variations to hit your glute muscles from every angle. For instance, you’ll start with the shoulder bridge, targeting your gluteus maximus, the largest glute-muscle group, which fires during hip extension. Then you’ll kick it up a notch with a single-leg version, followed by a single-leg pulse.
Next you’ll focus on your hip abductor muscles—your gluteus minimus and gluteus medius, or the two smaller glute muscles that make up the sides of your butt—with the clamshell exercise. Like with the shoulder bridge, you’ll move into variations of the move as well, like clamshell leg lifts, clamshell circles, and clamshell long leg lifts.
You’ll finish up your workout with core-centric moves like the short plank, which is done in tabletop position, short plank step-out, kneeling hip thrust, and walkout to squat.
Ready to really light up your glutes? Grab a mat and get ready for this quick lower-body mat Pilates workout. Your cool-down is just 20 minutes away!
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