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Question
Posted by: A | 2004/11/16

Pilates-can you get a 6 pack

Hi,im a female who has been doing pilates for 3 months now.4 times a week for an hour each time. I have not lost any weight as yet nor any cm's around my waist. My main concern is will i be able to get a six pack through pilates for summer?

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Our expert says:
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HI A

I believe the answer is no - a six pack is really the definition that you can see in the muscle, and this takes both weight loss and strength training of the abs. I have no doubt that the Pilates is very good for the strength of the abs, and you will definitely benefit from the classes, because your core stability improves. What you need for the development of a six pack is to firstly focus on cardiovascular exercise, because you can't "spot reduce". That is, you can't really try and reduce the fat around your stomach, thighs and abdominals by just doing exercises for those areas. This kind of exercise, using specific muscles only, actually burns fewer calories than exercising large muscles groups in dynamic cardiovascular exercise such as walking, jogging, running, swimming or cycling. In order to burn the fat, you need to do these types of cardiovascular exercises as least 4 - 5 times a week for at least 30 - 45 minutes. This will help to increase the amount of calories that you use and help to decrease your body fat.

Having said that, it is still important to do some strengthening and toning exercise and obviously to include exercises that make use of the muscle groups in your abdominal area. The exercises that you do will depend on whether you have access to a gym or you do body weight exercises at home. I would suggest you have a look at the following website through the Health 24 site - http://www.health24.com/fitness/Build_muscle_Tone/16-478-504.asp

Lastly, keep in mind that this is a very common problem, and changes in certain areas can happen very slowly, because some people do just have a specific distribution of fat, and it can be hard to fight against this.

However, be patient and keep at it!

Good luck

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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