When you think of Pilates, you generally think of exercises that build core strength. When you think of core strength, you think of flat, firm abdominals. But we are missing a whole lotta core if we limit our definition to the front of our torso! There is a whole beautiful backside just waiting to help us to build core strength, stand taller, and look and feel longer. Core strength is about three-dimensional balance, and that means the abs and back must work together as a team.
on the back of your torso and bend us back, to the side, and rotate us, should very much work TOGETHER to keep us right in the middle, standing tall, long and confident. Balance and posture are just 2 amazing reasons to get you thinking about your beautiful backside. Here's a few more fun facts:
1) Your back calms you down. The sympathetic ganglia that control your fight or flight reaction lay just in front and to the side of the spinal column. The tighter your muscles are, especially around the upper back the more stress we may literally be putting on our nervous system. So if you're feeling stressed or tight, take a moment to lay on your back and breath as deeply as you can into the back of your ribs to relax your nervous system.
2) Your back makes you seem confident but non-threatening. Imagine you are wrapped up in a blanket. You probably threw the blanket around your back and then nestled back into it. You can emulate that same sensation of comfort by nestling into your back body when you greet people, sit at your desk or while you're walking around the grocery store. Give a warm blanket to the world by feeling your back throughout your day.
3) Your back will open up your heart. You are probably sitting here reading this with your head slightly forward, maybe even with your shoulders rounded. (I just realized I was doing the same. D'OH! Awareness is the first step to progress.) You probably have thought at some point that you should get a massage not because your chest or belly is tight - chances are, it's because your shoulders, middle and/or lower back feel tight. Daily life pulls us forward. Of course - your eyes are on the front of your head. Take a long yawn today and reach high to the sky to open your heart - and your back.
i'm stephanie. my last names mean "hedgehog" in Czech and "pretty calf" in French. i have an MA from Oxford in English lit, and a MFA from Riverside in experimental choreography. i like to write. i have lots of thoughts on the body. and i want to help you understand your own better. oh, i'm also plant-based and love to bake with vegan ingredients.