If you've even been to a Pilates Class or have been prescribed core exercises by a Physio...you will very likely have heard the words Pelvic Curl between 1-100 times! Certainly closer to 100 than 1 if you have tried one of my Pilates classes!
What the heck am I raving about and why is it so important...
Well let's first talk about what a Pelvic Curl is...
A Pelvic curl is a movement of your pelvis and spine. When you perform a Pelvic Curl you move your spine (through spinal articulation) one vertebra at a time. You also engage and activate your deep core muscles and later in the movement your glutes.
How to achieve a Pelvic Curl....
For those visual folks...head straight to the link below!
Rotate your Pelvis forward and back - Notice how your lower back arch's away from the mat when you rotate the pelvis forward and your lower back presses against the mat when you rotate your pelvis back.
Find your Centre - Settle into a halfway position. In this position you want to feel a slight pelvic tuck and a neutral or flat lower back position. Your lower back should be gently resting flat to the mat below you.
Engage your Core - Gentle indrawing of your deep core muscles to switch those muscles on. Cue's that may work for you to achieve this step, might include "Draw belly button to spine" "Wrap an imaginary belt around your lower waist from outside to center"
Pelvic Curl working into Bridge - Exaggerate your posterior pelvic curl. Feel your bottom start to peel away from the mat. Start to place pressure into your heels, squeeze through your glute muscles and continue to peel your hips, lower back and mid back away from the floor.
Bridge - If you are now working into a full bridge your hips will be elevated creating a straight line between your shoulder joint, hips and knees. Ensure you focus on lifting away from and returning to the mat by moving one segment of your spine at a time.
What are the Benefits?
Improving spinal articulation/mobility
Activating and strengthening the deep core, gluteal and hamstrings muscles
Lengthening hip flexors
Enhancing pelvic stability and control
Finally....the part that reinforces my (slight) obsession with nailing the art of a Pelvic Curl....
Why is it so important?
Where do I start....if you have made it this far, Kudos, I will try keep it brief!
It is a fundamental part of training and developing your practice, be it in Pilates, gym work or injury prevention strategies. For me, learning how to effectively perform a Pelvic Curl in Pilates or core training is akin to learning how to walk before you can attempt to run. If you can perform an effective Pelvic Curl it is a fundamental and essential movement to build from. It will help you progress and excel with your Pilates or core training practice, allowing you to get much from benefit from the efforts you apply.
Improved pelvic stability and control is key for safe and efficient movement patterns. With a stable pelvis and an ability to control your pelvis you will not only prevent injuries and imbalances but you will also be able to transfer power move effectively. And the great news is...better power transfer = more output (speed, power, endurance) and less fatigue!
A freely mobile spine, appropriately lengthened hip flexors and strong glutes and hamstrings are key targets for an optimal functioning body.
And if you really are still hear....hand clap to you! If you now think that learning the Art of a Pelvic Curl is something for you. Practice, test it out and incorporate it in some daily movements.
More resources and guidance can be found through video's on my YouTube Channel
And information on Pilates Classes via my website