Pilates: All about the “The Hundred”


The Hundred

This move is a  classic Pilates exercise and one of the most complete abdominal workouts around. The Hundred exercise builds core strength, stamina and coordination. It also improves breathing using the thoracic breathing pattern and stimulate circulation.

Muscle Groups:

Adominal muscle group (Rectus abdominis, Rectus abdominis Oblique, deep neck flexors, Hip Flexors and Serratus anterior.

To prepare

Lie down on your mat with your legs bent, feet and knees together, arms down by your sides and back in imprint.
This is the starting position for the basic version of the hundred which is most recommendable for those who’ve never done Pilates before or people who suffer from occasional lower back ache.

The exercise version one

Inhale lengthen the back of your neck, exhale draw your shoulders down as you reach forwards and flex your upper body off the mat.
Now inhale and beat 1,2,3,4,5 exhale 2,3,4,10, inhale  2,3,4,5 exhale 2,3,4,20 inhale 2,3,4,5 exhale 2,3,4,30, and so on until you reach one hundred.

The exercise version two

To prepare, pick one foot, followed by the other off the floor to a table top position.
Now inhale and lengthen the back of your neck, exhale draw your shoulders down as you reach forwards and flex your upper body off the mat. Now inhale and beat 2,3,4,5 exhale 2,3,4,10, inhale 2,3,4,5 exhale 2,3,4,20 inhale 2,3,4,5 exhale 2,3,4,30 and so on until you reach one hundred.

The exercise version three

This is the most complete and challenging version of the hundred and is not recommendable to novices to Pilates.
To prepare, lengthen your legs out from the table top position to a low diagonal.

Checkpoints:

  • Losing control in the correct head position
  • Allowing your shoulders to roll forward
  • Trunk movement with arm pumps, ensure you maintain a static trunk.

Sarah Pennicott

Personal Trainer & Pilates Teacher

www.master-fitness.co.uk