Short Box Series - Mermaid

This intermediate level exercise helps to increase strength of the abdominals, especially the obliques. It also focuses on the hip abductors and rotators. It is intermediate because you are hanging on by one foot in the strap and it requires a lot of strength and body awareness to perform the exercise correctly.Equipment Set Up:Place a box over the shoulder rests (width-wise) and slide it as far forward as possible to rest against the shoulder rests. Stopper and Gear Bar set for footwork. Attach the foot strap around the platform end. Use 2-3 full tension (heavy) springs, marked red on the STOTT PILATESÌÎå«Ì´Ìâ Reformers, so the carriage does not move during the exercise.Start Position:Begin seated on the short box facing the side with the back leg folded on the box in front of you and the front leg hooked by your foot on the foot strap, and you heel resting on the rail of the reformer. Both legs are laterally rotated. Your pelvis should be vertical and your spine should be neutral. Arms are reaching out to the sides.To Perform the Exercise:Inhale and lift your hip to hinge out over the back of the reformer. Simultaneously rotate your top leg medially to wrap the strap around your foot and lift the leg. Simultaneously raise the top arm by your ear and fold the bottom arm in front of you. Exhale and flex your spine laterally as far as you can support. The carriage does not move throughout this exercise. Inhale and return back onto the box taking your spine back to neutral and your leg rotates laterally and rests back on the rail. Your arms reach back out to the sides. Then exhale and laterally flex your spine over the spring side of the carriage (front) and take your back arm by your ear and your front arm folds in front of you. Then inhale and return to the start position and then exhale and reset. Complete 3-5 on each side.

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