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How to Do a Single Leg Kick in Pilates

Learn how to do a single leg kick Pilates mat exercise from Core Pilates NYC instructor Sarah Ruback in this Howcast workout video.


Next is Single Leg Lick. Single Leg Kick follows right after Swan, as it's part of our extension series. So we'll be working on strengthening and stretching the musculature of the back, as well as our hamstrings.

If you have knee issues, you'll want to leave out the kick. Even if you don't have knee issues proscribed, if it feels awkward, if you feel tendons rolling over your kneecap, again leave it out. You don't have to feel that uncomfortable. You still get the work of the abdominals in this position.

So to set up for Single Leg Kick, slide your elbows underneath your shoulders. Bring both of your fists together, and press your fists together. So if you were wearing rings on either side of your fingers, they would be touching. This gives you a nice stretch through your forearms.

From here, zip the legs strongly together. Feel your pubic bone press into the mat, and lift your abdominals in and up. Then begin to kick your right heel to your seat two times. Kick, kick, and switch. Kick, kick, and switch. Keep going. That's it.

So as you're working, keep your pelvis nice and still. There will be a little bit of movement, but just thinking about trying to keep it still will activate and fire those muscles of support.

Two more, Madeline. One, two. One more to each side. Widen the collar bones. That's it. Now lower your feet to the mat. Take a breath in. Then exhale. Lower all the way back down.

After your extension series, you can do an optional rest position, which is to sit back toward the heels. Get the seat toward the heels with the arms long and extended. You can do this after Swan as well, if you'd like.

That's our Single Leg Kick.

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