Pilates rules for muscle toning, but it won't work off that slice of pizza you had for lunch. Fortunately, you have options. An evolved Pilates conditioning method uses rebounding exercises to get your heart rate up and burn some calories. It uses either of three types of equipment. The Pilates jump board attaches to the reformer and facilitates plyometric type exercises. A Pilates rebounder is similar to the jump board but has a softer, pliable surface. The third type uses a mini-trampoline for performing the Pilates exercises.
Attach the jump board or rebounder to the reformer. Attach one or two springs.
Lie supine on the reformer carriage, and adjust the shoulder pads so that they rest comfortably at the top of your shoulders.
Place your feet on the jump board or rebounder. Separate them to hip-width apart, and align your knees with your ankles.
Straighten your legs and push away from the board in a jumping movement.
Bend your knees and land your feet on the board or rebounder. Land so that your toes touch first, then the balls of your feet, then your heels.
Perform 20 repetitions, then externally rotate your legs so that your heels are together and your feet are turned out. Do another 20 repetitions.
Turn your feet back to parallel alignment. Keep your right foot on the board and lift your left leg. Bend your left leg and stabilize it in a "table-top" position.
Perform 10 one-legged jumps with your right leg.
Roll onto your left side, place your right foot on the board, and perform another 10 jumps from the side-lying position. This engages your gluteus medius and outer thigh muscles. Repeat the sequence with your left leg.
Lie supine on the mini-trampoline. Lift your head and shoulders, and place your fingers at the base of your head for neck support.
Lift your legs and extend them to a 45-degree angle.
Sink your left hip into the rebounder. Bend your right knee, and rotate your upper torso toward your right leg. Sink your right hip into the rebounder, and repeat the movement to the left. Do 20 repetitions, or 10 to each side.
- Exhale on the extension phase of the jumping movements. This will help you engage your core and stabilize your lower back.
- Add upper-body movements with light weights to increase the intensity.
- The jump board and the Pilates rebounder both support rebounding movements. The softer surface of the rebounder allows for longer jumping sessions. The harder surface of the jump board has a greater transfer of training into sports.
- Although the rebounding exercises move faster, continue to adhere to the Pilates principles of position, centering and control.
- If you suffer from knee injuries, consult your doctor before trying any type of rebounding exercise.
In 1999, Lisa Mercer’s fitness, travel and skiing expertise inspired a writing career. Her books include "Open Your Heart with Winter Fitness" and "101 Women's Fitness Tips." Her articles have appeared in "Aspen Magazine," "HerSports," "32 Degrees," "Pregnancy Magazine" and "Wired." Mercer has a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the City College of New York.