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Core Workout: Incline Bench Abs

This is a fantastic core workout routine to enhance your Pilates training program and improve the strength of your Ab muscles along with helping your back bend better for exercises like the Pilates Roll Up and Neck Pull. You’ll need a decline sit-up bench, or you can use a step aerobics bench and a mat.  I love teaching these exercises to my Pilates clients, and then encourage them to practice the series when they go to the gym.

This core workout routine consists of 3 exercises: A Full Sit-Up, Double Leg Lifts and KG Curl & Pulse. Instead of putting your head at the low end of the bench, put your head at the high end.  You’ll have help getting through the “sticky” spot for a full sit up, and your back will connect to the bench more quickly as you roll down, helping you improve the articulation of your spine.

The Full Sit-Up

Double Leg Lifts

Keep your lower back protected and firmly anchored to the mat to protect your back throughout the exercise.  Only lower your legs as far down as you can maintain your back against the mat.

KG Curl & Pulse

Completion of all 3 exercises is 1 Set. 

Do 1-3 Sets for a Great Core Workout!

As you perform this core workout routine keep in mind that your goal is to work the abs. Using the incline bench will assist with better articulation through the spine for a full roll up and rolling back to the bench. The angle of the bench can help your awareness of what it takes to pull in your abdominal muscles and let your back muscles relax to get maximum benefits from your efforts.

As you execute the routine, always remember to feel and focus on your abdominals. It’s important to pull yourself up without arching your back or pulling with your arms on the full sit-up.  For the double leg lift, the legs only lower as far down as you can keep your back to the mat, and as you lift the legs – ideally you’re using more core than Quads to bring the legs back up to the ceiling.On the KG curl pulses you’re working the high abs, but still feeling the low abs and low back firmly against the mat. Stay safe and injury-free during your core workouts by paying attention to these details during every repetition you do.

Take what you’re discovering during this incline bench core workout and apply these tips and techniques to all the sit-up exercises you do!

Pick an appropriate number of repetitions for each exercise that you can do, and do well.  Pay attention to the number and you’ll find as you get stronger, you’ll easily be able to do 20 reps and 3 sets.

From a Pilates point of view, it’s not as important how many repetitions you do, but how well you do each exercise and use the right muscles to do the work.  Incorporate this Incline Bench Ab workout into your weekly workout routine and get more from your Core.


Take your Incline Bench Abs back to Pilates!

Discover how much easier it is to find the right muscles to do the work and support you during your Pilates Mat Workouts.

Looking for a great Pilates audio workout to put on your iphone or MP3 player? Check out these downloadable Pilates Mat workouts for a great workout anytime, anywhere!

Centerworks® Pilates CD and MP3 Workouts

Posted by Aliesa George in Exercise and Fitness, Functional Movement, Pilates, Videos and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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