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3 Pilates Exercises for Stronger Abs

Presented by Sandvi Studio

Be Strong. Be Graceful. Be Inspired.

Abs are often the first thing that comes to mind when we think of our core. But a strong core is so much more than a six-pack.

A strong core—which includes your deepest abdominal muscles, pelvic floor, and muscles in your back —helps keep your body balanced and stable. It is the foundation for long-term health and wellness, allowing you to maintain proper posture and youthful flexibility.

The Pilates Method is known for the highly effective way it engages your core, avoiding the back injuries so common with

After being immersed for 25 years in the dance world—studying and performing ballet and modern dance during and after attending The Juilliard School— I discovered a passion for teaching Pilates.

This style of training has helped me and my clients become healthier and pain-free, all while increasing strength and improving posture and well-being.

I want everyone to have the tools to take care of themselves and keep themselves vital no matter their age. These 3 Pilates Moves for Stronger Abs are a first step to reaping all the benefits of core strengthening. Best part? You don’t need any equipment to get started!

- Sabrina Berry, Certified Pilates Instructor and Owner of Sandvi Studio
- Sabrina Berry
Certified Pilates Instructor and Owner of Sandvi Studio

Benefits of Pilates

Pilates is rooted in strengthening muscles while improving postural alignment and flexibility.

This form of low-impact exercise was invented in the early 20th-century by its namesake founder Joseph Pilates. He was focused on the entire person — body, mind, and spirit— and believed that physical fitness is intertwined with overall health.

Here are the nine core principles to keep in mind before you begin your Pilates practice:

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Breath is the link between the mind and body.
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To be in control is to maintain alignment, using your mind to control your form.
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Applying concentration and control brings precision.
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Rhythm & Flow

The exercises are done with a smooth, graceful flow.
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In Pilates, we learn to use just the right amount of effort to do the exercises, which helps us find ease and flow in movement and life.
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“It is better to do five repetitions perfectly than 20 without paying attention.” Be present and in control of the movements.
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All movement radiates from our center and is a defining characteristic of Pilates.
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Balanced Muscle Development

The goal is improved posture, ease in the body, and enhanced physical abilities, achieved by working the body in a balanced way.
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Whole Body Movement

It is about a whole-body experience, moving with clarity and purpose.


This is a quintessential Pilates move. The percussive motion of the arms and expansive breathing energizes and warms the body, preparing it for the rest of your routine. Begin with 2-3 rounds until you have the strength for 10 cycles of breath.
Number 1
Curl the chest up off the floor, making a C shape with the spine, arms parallel to the floor.
Number 2
Draw the knees into the chest and then extend the legs out.
Number 3
Begin small arm pumps up and down while you inhale for 5 counts and exhale for 5 counts. Keep your focus forward, not up to the ceiling.
Female doing double leg stretch


  • If your low back begins arching off the mat or you have discomfort, lift the legs higher or bend your knees.
  • If your neck feels strained, support the head with your hands until you gain more strength.
The Single Leg Stretch helps strengthen the abdominals and develops spinal and pelvic stability while improving coordination. Begin with 5 sets and then gradually increase up to 12 as you become stronger.
Number 1
Begin lying flat, then curl the chin towards the chest until you are in a C curve again.
Number 2
Pull your right leg into your body as far as you can while you stretch the left out with pointed toes. The left leg is straight and off the floor a few inches.
Number 3
Switch legs.
Number 4
Keep your breath flowing as you continue to draw the abdominals in and up, away from the straight leg in opposition.
Female doing single leg stretch


Support the head with your hands until your core becomes stronger.
The Double Leg Stretch helps strengthen the abdominals and develops spinal and pelvic stability while improving coordination. Repeat five times.
Number 1
Curl up into your C curve.
Number 2
Bring both legs into your chest.
Number 3
Exhale as you extend both legs away, reaching the arms out in opposition, keeping your spine stable.
Number 4
Inhale and pull both legs firmly into the chest.
Female doing the Hundred Stretch


Support your head with your hands and reach your legs straight up to the ceiling before bringing them back into the chest.
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I hope you’re feeling inspired to begin your core strengthening Pilates routine! Feel free to email or message me with your questions and transformation, and if you’re ready to go deeper, sign up for Sandvi Studio’s full-body On-Demand Pilates & Barre Classes for free for seven days.
Wishing you success on your wellness journey.
—Sabrina Berry, Certified Pilates Instructor and Owner of Sandvi Studio

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