Pilates Angel x Refinery29

  
Click on the link below to see a full body Pilates Mat workout that I shared with Refinery29 Wellness that you can do at home. All you need is a mat!

http://www.refinery29.com/pilates

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3 Tips for a Happy, Healthy Holiday

  
|| H O L I D A Y S || Tis the season to keep getting in my Pilates workouts! (Photo courtesy Balance, Your Pilates and Yoga Studio)

Maintaining my usual fitness routine while traveling and spending time with family is a challenge. I literally have to sneak out of the house to get my workouts in while my family wants to feed me all day!

Having a similar dilemma? Here are 3 Tips for maintaining an active and healthy lifestyle during the holiday season!

1 — Go to the grocery store and purchase healthy eats to keep in the house during your stay.

Thankfully my dad has a nutribullet and always keeps fresh and frozen fruits, veggies, oats, and almond milk in stock. Although I go out to eat a lot when visiting home, I still am able to make my green smoothies in the morning for breakfast and have healthy snacks between meals.

2 — Find local gyms and fitness studios to go to for workouts.

When I travel, I always take time to do some research on studios nearby the location I will be staying. It can be fun to find new places to workout and I also get to meet new people in different cities and countries. I will often take an hour long pilates, yoga, or other type of group exercise class where I will still be close to family and friends.

  

3 — Encourage friends and family members to exercise and eat nutritious foods.

Going for walks, bike rides, taking group fitness classes, and exercising at home is a great way to be active and spend time with your family. Share fitness tips and some of your favorite healthy recipes with your loved ones. I enjoy showing my dad smoothie recipes and learning some of his as well. I also love teaching my little cousins pilates and yoga (pictured above).

 
Wishing you a Happy & Healthy Holiday Season!!! Angilique xo

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Victoria’s Secret Angels Workout: Glamour Magazine

  
Ever wonder what it’s like to train like a Victoria’s Secret Angel? Gina Papalia and I, from Grasshopper Pilates in NYC, trained these top models to prepare them for the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show! 

We put together 3 challenging workouts with Glamour.com featuring some of our favorite exercises that we gave the models to get them runway ready. All you need is a mat and a set of 3lb Dumbbells to do this at-home workout!

  
1 — Abs http://video.glamour.com/watch/how-to-get-abs-like-a-victorias-secret-model

  
2 — Arms http://video.glamour.com/watch/how-to-get-arms-like-a-victorias-secret-model

  
3 — Butt http://video.glamour.com/watch/how-to-get-a-butt-like-a-victorias-secret-model

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Move of the Day: Développé 

  
|| DÉVELOPPÉ || This ballet inspired variation of the Pilates side kicks is a great exercise to tone the booty!

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1 — Begin lying on your side with your shoulders and hips stacked and legs slightly forward on angle, one or both hands behind the head. Have the heels together and toes apart in a Pilates “V.”

2 — Bend the top knee dragging the toes up the inside of the bottom leg and be sure that the knee is pointing up, keeping the turnout of the hips.

3 — Extend the top leg up towards the ceiling and lower it to meet the bottom leg in the starting position. Repeat 4-10x and perform this exercise on the other side.

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Tips: Keep the torso still while moving the legs by pulling the belly button in towards the spine. If having both hands behind the head feels too challenging to keep the body still, place the top hand on the mat in front of you for support.

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Tights: BodyLanguage Sportswear

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Move of the Day: Hundred

  
|| HUNDRED || Hundred is my move of the day and is a classical Pilates exercise that helps to tone your abs! Adding a set of 2lb dumbbells makes this move even more challenging for the core, and it will help to create lean, sexy arms too!

Benefits:

• Strengthens and tones the abdominals.

• Warms up the entire body and increases blood flow.

• Tones the arms and upper body.

• Coordinates breath with movement.

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1 — Start by lying supine with arms by the sides holding the dumbbells, and knees into the chest. Engage the abdominals by pulling the belly button in and curl the head and shoulders off the mat.
2 — Extend the legs out to a high diagonal with the heels together and toes apart in a Pilates “V.” Lift the arms above the level of the hips and begin pumping up and down vigorously, as you inhale for 5 counts and exhale for 5 counts.

3 — Repeat x10 and that makes 100!

4 — Hug the knees into your chest and lower the head and shoulders onto the mat. Move the head from side to side to relax the neck.

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Tips: Keep the body still as you pump the arms by engaging the abdominals throughout the exercise. For more of a challenge, lower the legs closer to the floor, but only as far as you can keep the abdominal engagement without arching the back.

Modifications: If you are a beginner, practice this exercise without dumbbells and start with the legs in a tabletop position, knees bent above the hips and feet lifted as high as the knees. If that is too challenging, you can also perform the exercise with the knees bent and the feet flat on the floor. 
If you have any neck issues, do this exercise with the head down and use a small pillow or towel for extra support if needed.

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Photo by Sherry Dubash at KZP

Tights by Splits59

“Like” Pilates Angel on Facebook and follow me on Instagram @imyourangil to see more of my favorite moves!

Reflection: Balance

  
|| B A L A N C E || Finding balance can be a challenge especially when you live in NYC. There is so much to take in as we walk and run through the city, that we sometimes have to block out the constant noise and chaos to find peace. 

Pilates and yoga help me to find balance amidst the chaos. In these disciplines I focus on my center, my breath, and I take time to be still. Less can indeed be more as my focus allows me to find a much needed balance.

Photo by Masha Creative for Nóli Yoga 2015 Collection http://www.noliyoga.com

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Move of the Day: Teaser

  
|| TEASER || Teaser is my move of the day and one of the most challenging classical Pilates exercises. Most of the movements that are performed early in the matwork are meant to prepare the body for teasers.

Benefits:
• Strengthens the abdominals and hip flexors

• Improves balance and coordination

• Stretches the hamstrings

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1 — Start lying supine with arms along sides of the body. Inhale to prepare, engaging the abdominal muscles by pulling the belly button in.

2 — Exhale to roll up, lifting the upper and lower body simultaneously. Legs should be at about a 45 degree angle and arms reaching upwards, parallel to the legs.

3 — Inhale to hold the balance, and exhale to roll back onto the mat, ideally with the head and feet touching at the same time.

4 — Repeat x4.
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Tips: Be sure to sit up tall in the teaser with the head and chest lifted, but keep a slight curve in the lower back. Keep the abdominals engaged, focus on the breath, and relax the shoulders as you balance. For more of a challenge, start with arms extended behind the head rather than along the sides, and have the legs lower in the balance.

Modifications: If you have tightness in the hip flexors, hamstrings, and lower back, keep the knees bent with the heels together, toes apart, and knees slightly apart in a diamond shape. If you are a beginner and teasers feel too challenging, try practicing the hundred, the roll up, and the lower lift exercise in the matwork series to build core strength.

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Photo by Masha Creative for Nóli Yoga with fellow Pilates instructor Katie Yip

“Like” Pilates Angel on Facebook and follow me on Instagram @imyourangil to see more of my favorite moves!