New Series: White House Pilates Bride-to-Be Tips

We are excited to team up with the lovely Caroline Londergan of White House Pilates in Hermosa Beach, CA to bring you weekly tips for keeping in tip-top shape for your wedding, and really for a healthy lifestyle all around.

Caroline was the first to introduce the amazing benefits of Pilates to The White House, the United States Secret Service, and the Washington D.C. SWAT Team. She is a Certified Pilates Instructor through the PhysicalMind Institute/The Method Pilates as well as a Certified Yoga Instructor with the Yoga Alliance. Caroline expanded her knowledge of Pilates by studying with Stott Pilates, Balanced Body University, and the Pilates Method Alliance.

After eight years of touring and dancing professionally, Caroline opened White House Pilates in Hermosa Beach, CA in 2009. She embodies a healthy and active lifestyle and enjoys sharing her knowledge and technique with clients...and we are happy to share Caroline's tips with you, our Lucky Orchid Wedding readers!

...so without further delay...

Go Get a Pilates Ring or Magic Circle!

You've got the bling now go get the ring! This is a great way to get fit at home. The Pilates Ring is available at places like Target or Walmart and it usually comes with an instructional video. You can use this circle for an intense full body workout.

Here are just a few to mention:

Inner Thigh Blaster: Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet hip distance apart on the floor. Place the outside pads of the circle between and right above the knees. Pulse the circle 12 times and then hold and squeeze the ring for 12 seconds. Repeat 3 times. Then do the same thing all over again in a bridge. (To do a bridge: Step into your feet lifting your hips off the floor and balancing on your shoulder blades.) Once you get stronger, challenge yourself more by increasing your reps to 20 pulses and hold and squeeze the ring for 30 seconds.

Outer Thigh Blaster: Same exercise as above just change the circle placement. Put your feet through the circle bring the inner pads up above the knees. Press out and engage your glutes (your butt) for the repetitions. Then press out and stay trying to break the circle apart rather than squeezing. Repeat again in the bridge position. This will work your hamstrings, and glutes even harder.

Tone your upper body and arms: Stand with really good posture, your abs engaged and your glutes supporting you. Hold the circle on the outside pads out in front of you like a steering wheel, with just a slight bend in the elbows. Pulse the circle 20 times, and then squeeze for 20 seconds.Repeat 3 times. Move the circle overhead, but still slightly in front of your head on a diagonal. Pulse here for 20 repetitions and squeeze for 20 seconds. Repeat 3 times. Place the circle behind you and hold it on the outside pads and low with the bottom of the circle pointing down toward your heels. Pulse here 20 times and repeat 3 times.

Abdominal Crunches with Neck Support: Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet hip distance apart on the floor. Put your head through the circle with one of the inner pads behind the nape of your neck. Your hands go on the opposite inner pad with your arms bent and relaxed. Look down at your knees, engage your abdominals (pull your navel to your spine) and curl up for an abdominal crunch. Keep your pelvis neutral, with your hip bones and pubic bone staying parallel to the ceiling. Try to maintain a little space below your waist. Once you get stronger, bring your legs up to table top. (Table top: lift your feet off the floor, with your legs in a 90 degree angle, your knees above your hips and your shins parallel with the ceiling) Or maybe even extend your legs out straight to a 45 degree angle. *This is fine as long as you don't feel anything in your back and can stabilize your torso with your abdominals.

To healthy living,
Caroline Londergan
Owner, White House Pilates

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