Most dancers are familiar with basic exercises like squats, planks and push-ups. But the Nalini Method—a style inspired by yoga, pilates and resistance training—offers new, challenging variations on each. Used by both dancers and non-dancers, the method is known for increasing allover strength while developing long, lean muscles. It also promises to enhance flexibility, reinforce your core and improve posture. Here Rupa Mehta, creator of the technique shares three Nalini moves with DS.
Lower your body into a push-up position with your knees bent onto the floor. Your hands should be flat, placed slightly wider than your shoulders.
Slowly lower your body all the way to the floor. Tip: Keep focus between your hands.
Push back up about half way, then lower back down to the floor.
Finally, push all the way up. Repeat 10 times and follow with 10 standard push-ups (all the way down to the floor and all the way back up).
Why this is good for you: The extra contraction challenges your chest muscles.
Squats in Second
Start with your feet turned out in a wide second position, and place your right hand on a barre or a chair back. Bend your knees and sink your hips down into a grand plié (your pelvis should be in line with the knees). Lean back slightly and lift your chest. From the lowered position, raise your pelvis up about one inch, then lower. Repeat 20 times with a 10-second hold at the end.
Tip: Keep your shoulder blades back and down.
Tip: Engage your abs.
Tip: Stay grounded.
Why this is good for you: Mini squats target your butt and thighs.
Get into a standard plank pose with your weight on your forearms and feet. Hold the position for 20 seconds.
Push your hips to the right, back to center, then left and back to center. Repeat the movement 20 times.
Tip: Keep your focus down, slightly in front of your hands.
Tip: Keep your hips aligned with your body in plank position.
Tip: Remember to breathe.
Why this is good for you: This move works your entire core at once.
Model and consultant: Rupa Mehta
Rupa Mehta is the creator of the Nalini Method. Her studio is located in NYC.
Go to dancespirit.com//videos to see Rupa demonstrate these moves.