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  Pilates exercise: simplified double straight leg stretch Pilates Information
Pilates Alexander Technique
Free pilates Exercises Online
Simplified double straight leg stretch:- Start Position
  1. Lie on your back, legs to ceiling, knees bent
  2. Lightly cradle your head and neck in your fingers. You should be able to see your elbows
The small of your back is pressed gently to the mat. Keep it there throughout!
Simplified double straight leg stretch:- Action
  1. Inhale to prepare
  2. Exhale to curl your head neck and shoulders up and straighten your legs toward the ceiling: Lengthen the side of the neck and gently tuck the chin.
  3. Inhale to hold
  4. Exhale to return to start (small of the back stays on the mat)!
  5. And inhale to prepare (repeat four to 10 times).

Treat this "simplified" version with respect because what it loses in physical demand vis-a-vis "double straight leg stretch" it gains in terms of mind and body integration!
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The Double Leg Stretch:
Start Position
What it does
  • This is a whole of body integration exercise that combines a number of movements with core stability. Your mind has a lot to concentrate on which is great for learning to consciously optimize your body position and movement.
  • A challenging intermediate core strength exercise. Nevertheless it is within the reach of most participants.
Watch Points
  • Core control: the hip bones remain still and the small of the back remains down!
  • Cradle the head (don't pull it up)!
  • Relax and lengthen the sides of the neck!
  • Elbows wide, upper chest open
  1. Shirley A Sahrmann: Diagnosis and Treatment of Movement Impairment Syndromes; Publ. Mosby 2002
  2. The Official Body Control Pilates Manual Available from:

© Bruce Thomson, EasyVigour Project
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