Pilates: Leg Circles

Lie on your back with one leg raised to a 90 degree angle with your toes pointing towards the ceiling. Keep the other leg either stretched out parallel in front of you along the floor or with the knee bent. Make sure your pelvis is (and remains) in neutral. Arms should be in a T position with palms facing down.

With two inhales you are going to circle the leg twice from the outside in (or clockwise), no more than hip-width distance apart. Imagine your toe drawing a circle in the air. On the next two exhales you will circle the leg the other way twice, anti-clockwise.

Your breathing rythm should be, “inhale, inhale” then “exhale, exhale” in a “pulsing” manner so it has a dynamic to it, with your leg following this dynamic. Repeat for 4 sets, then a 2 full breaths of inhale, exhale to lower and change to the other leg – repeat on the other side. Then repeat the whole sequence again.

Lengthen the leg away at all times and remain neutral in the pelvis and spine. Try not to grip in the hips. You will feel the pelvis wanting to move with the leg, but hold it steady with your  abdominals. Keep the circles small and precise and the supporting leg parallel and stable.


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