Tips for Pilates Neutral Spine Position
The trick for neutral spine is to be able to keep that position when you aren't moving.
Hi, my name is Audrey Laurelton and I'm the owner of Equilibrium Pilates in Montclair, NJ. I'm here for About.com today to explain to you what neutral spine is in Pilates. Neutral spine is a common concept in Pilates. We are going to start by bending the knees and placing them flat on the mat hip width apart. Just lying here, everyone is going to have a slightly different curve in their lower back depending on their body structure. Some people have larger lumbar curves than others.First, push into your heels letting that tailbone lift up gently off the mat, into a tucked position. Letting the hips drop back down, we're going to do the opposite. Reach the sit bones or the tailbone into the mat, letting that tailbone curve into a tilt. Then just relax and let the back fall flat into place again. For a neutral pelvis or spine, you want to feel that the sit bones are really reaching out nice and long.Then the trick is to be able to keep it their as you start to move. So lift your right leg up and place it back down without letting those hips move. Then try it with the left leg. You'll have to engage the abdominal muscles to help stabilize the pelvis to make sure it doesn't move.Once you've mastered the single legs, try both legs. Take a nice big exhale, lift those legs up, keeping that core and pelvis stable and then try lowering them back down. You may find, as you lift up, you want to go a little too far and let that tailbone curve and then as you lower you might be tempted to release the abs and let the back arch. Again that will take you into your tuck and tilt which we are trying to avoid. Thank you for watching. For more information, go to: health.about.com.