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The summer months can be much anticipated, with plenty of plans made and plenty of time to carry them out. But with children off school, the weeks can quickly seem to stretch out before you and often leave little time for self-care.

With normal routines going out of the window, there is still time to fit in a little Pilates, especially when you can practice at home around all your other plans. With that in mind, here are my three all-time favourite Pilates moves. Not only are they great to fit into those little moments you can grab for yourself, but they can also be adapted depending on your ability.

Exercise one – Shoulder bridge

A wonderful, all-over body workout, the shoulder bridge is ideal for anyone who loves running or cycling. It lengthens the quads and helps to build strength in the hamstrings and glutes whilst improving spinal mobility which can help your posture.

Exercise two – Roll Down with Press-ups

Called Contrology when it was invented by Joseph Pilates, roll down and press up was the final Pilates exercise. This is a great exercise that can relieve tension in the back whilst helping to stretch the legs. The exercise has a rolling motion that not only strengthens the abdominals but also improves whole-body blood circulation. It can also improve mobility in the spine, back, neck and hamstrings.

It can be a good idea to begin with a few roll-downs before you add press-ups in the mix. This will help you to focus on your breathing and movement before adding another movement.

A classic press-up works more than just the arms. It also works the chest (pectoralis major), shoulders (deltoids), legs (quadriceps), Abs (rectus abdominis), and hips (obliques). This position can be started from either a plank position with the knees off the ground or a box position with the weight over the hands, which makes it ideal for tailoring to your own abilities.

Exercise three – Swan Dive

A fantastic exercise that strengthens the upper back and promotes great mobility in the thoracic spine. When performing a swan dive, you need to think about drawing your core muscles in, your ribs down towards your hips and above all, avoiding pushing your belly into the floor.

You might not have the time or energy for the gym on a regular basis over the summer, but finding time to fit just a few of these exercises in each day is much more doable. If this has inspired you to take Pilates further, then why not check out my online classes, whatever level you believe you are at?

 Why not check out my classes to see how they could help you?