Hanneke's love for movement started many years ago at the ballet barre. After graduating with a Bachelors of Commerce at the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa and a career as a Money Broker in London and New York, Hanneke decided to follow her true passion and became an Internationally Certified STOTT Pilates Instructor. Hanneke is a passionate teacher, dedicated to motivating and helping her students achieve their own fitness goals.

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Pilates with Hanneke Blog

by Hanneke Antonelli, Pilates Expert

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What's the first thing you do when you get up in the morning? Do you immediately start up a cup of coffee to get rid of the grogginess, which then leads to a massive crash a few hours later and you buying a not-so-healthy snack to try boost your energy?

Try these invigorating Pilates exercises instead! Not only will it loosen your muscles and make you more flexible, it will also make you feel leaner and healthier! This feeling will in return help you to make healthy choices throughout your day!

1) The Roll-Down - Standing:

Start standing up-right with your feet parallel and hip distance apart. Inhale through your nose to grow taller through your spine and gently roll your chin to your chest. Exhale and roll your spine one bone at a time all the way down till you can touch your toes, bending your knees when you have to. Take a deep inhale at the bottom, start exhaling and slowly roll yourself back up to standing, bit by bit. Repeat twice.

2) The Roll-Up - Laying Down:

Lay on your back on a carpet or yoga/Pilates mat with your legs together or hip distance apart, arms reaching over your head. Inhale through your nose and bring your arms to the ceiling, gently lift your head, neck and shoulders away from the mat. Exhale through your mouth, zip your abdominals in and up, continue to roll yourself all the way up, spine flexed over your thighs, reaching for your toes. Inhale and start rolling yourself down one bone at a time, exhale and keep the abdominals zipped to bring yourself back to the start position. (Note you can always bend your knees if you are unable to roll up or down smoothly.) Repeat 5 times.

3) Rolling Like a Ball:

Sit with your knees bent. Roll yourself just off your sit bones and lift the feet off the floor, balancing on your sacrum and rounding your back. Inhale to roll yourself to your shoulder blades, exhale and roll yourself back up again. Keep the movement fluid and focus on engaging your core and keeping your spine in a C-curve. Repeat 8-10 times.

Remember, never skip breakfast or Pilates!

For more Pilates tips and videos find me on Facebook or my website.

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