Forum: Advice / Pilates/Yoga

The Hundred
By i_own_you
On Sun Mar 26, 2006 12:35 PM

Can anyone try to explain to me "the hundred" in pilates?

20 Replies to The Hundred

re: The Hundred
By DancerGirl_08
On Sun Mar 26, 2006 01:00 PM
Start off by laying on your back, arms by your sides. Bring your knees into your chest, then extend your legs straight up into the air (so your body makes an L shape or a 90 degree angle) now, lower them down about a foot (your body should now be making like a 100/110 degree angle) (I hope that's right, I'm not very good with degrees). Now, lift your shoulders off the floor, keep your chin tucked in, and begin pumping your arms (aka just lift them up and down using very small movements). You should breathe in for a count of 5, then breathe out for a count of 5. I suppose 1 rep would be considered the 5 countss in and the 5 countss out, so do like 10 reps. Oh, and remember to keep your lower back on the floor at all times (think of pulling your belly button down to the floor)

Hope this wasn't to confusing, if you have any more questions, feel free to pm me!

re: The Hundred
By purpletutu
On Thu Mar 30, 2006 07:29 PM
I like your explanation and think it is easy to understand.
Every second day I make my Pilates and Yoga exercise, the hundred is a part of it.

What I would like to add to it:
Keep your fingers together and the arms reaching forward (only the arms not the shoulders)like you reach for someone or someone pulls on your arms. Just strong arms and fingers close.

I always feel sooo good after my exercise.

re: The Hundred
By dancin_til_death
On Thu Mar 30, 2006 10:10 PM
If you are just starting out pilates you can do the hundred with the legs bent or even straight up at 90 degrees until your strength builds up. If you don't have enough strength to hold your legs at 110 degrees then the hundred won't do any good and cause stress in your lower back.
re: The Hundred
By lauren503
On Sat May 27, 2006 01:16 PM
Don't forget to beat your arms up and down as you do the hundred!
re: The Hundred
By lauren503
On Sat May 27, 2006 01:19 PM
Don't forget to beat your arms up and down as you do the hundred!
re: The Hundred
By goducks2003member has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Fri Jun 23, 2006 12:00 PM
Oh! The hundred are so hard... I need to work on these I think! Question though: does the hundred only tone your abs, or does it tone more??

The Hundred
By DanceToYou
On Wed Jul 05, 2006 08:57 PM
The Hundred, as with most pilates exercises, does work more than just your abs. Pilates is about core work which increases balance, postural stability, and overall strength. The Hundred also strengthens the neck (when done properly), the legs, and it even engages the back. It's a great exercise!
re: The Hundred
By TheREALLabird122
On Tue Jul 11, 2006 09:58 AM
Maybe I'm not doing the excersize properly, but on my windsor pilates dvd, the hundred really was painful in the neck and shoulders for me!
re: The Hundred
By SammyAnnmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Jul 23, 2006 05:13 PM
you can also do it on an exercise ball. That's what I do.
re: The Hundred
By sing4joymember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Sun Jul 23, 2006 05:27 PM
TheREALLabird122: The neck pain might just be that you're not used to lifting your head off the ground for so long. That'll get better. Maybe you could rest your head on the floor in the beginning. But a lot of the exercises tell you to lift your head and shoulders off the floor, so I'd recommend that you try to.
re: The Hundred
By Kaydence
On Mon Jul 31, 2006 10:38 AM
If you are having any sort of pain or tension in your neck, that usually means your tummy muscles are not fully engaged. Remember, when you lift into a curl, you should be lifting by sliding the ribs down over your belly, and engaging you stomach muscles fully.

Do not lift from the neck!!

In the Hundred, this can be more difficult because of the arm placement (at your sides). If you are having problems with your neck hurting then you may not be ready for this exercise. Remember don't push yourself too hard!! Stick with exercises where you have more support in the upper body, like the ab prep, diamond shape, scissors, etc, until you have built up more strength.

Also, do not try the Hundred with your legs at 45' until you can succesfully (and painlessly) complete it both with your legs in tabletop or at 90'. If you're feeling any pain throughout the exercise, then stop! You don't have to be able to get to 100 at first time you try it!

Hope this helps
re: The Hundred
By DanceAngel120Premium member
On Tue Aug 22, 2006 10:33 PM
Everything in pilates should work much more than your stomach if done correctly. For the Hundred, if you're doing it right I'd say it should work your stomach, back, arms (especially if you're doing it with springs!), legs (specifically inner thighs), and butt.
re: The Hundred
By Yamulee
On Sat Sep 09, 2006 04:32 AM
If you are only just beginning pilates then you shouldnt really be extending both legs to more than the 90 degree angle as the chances are you dont have the strength to hold the position. If you rush things you run the risk of putting too much strain on your lower back which defeats the whole point of pilates.

A good way to check your abdominal strength and to monitor if you are using the correct muscles is to place one hand on your abdomen and feel what is happening. Your abdomen should feel flat, like you are hollowing the muscles towards your spine. If you can feel your muscles are doming up and pressing into your hand then it means you dont have the strength for the exercise and you should take it down a level while you work on core strength.
re: The Hundred
By heidita
On Sat Sep 16, 2006 08:21 AM
It is called the Hundred because you are suppose to work your way up to doing about 100 of the quick arm movements in one breath ideally, by extending that 5 count breath in and out to 10 then 20 and so forth. As others have pointed out it is very important to initiate your core muscles and it ends up activity almost all of your major muscle groups because you are sustaining your body in one position for about a minute or so. When done correctly it is one of the most beneficial pilates moves ;p
re: The Hundred
By black_daliah
On Tue Oct 24, 2006 09:13 PM
When you do the hundred, remember to breathe!

Start off on your back. Put your knees in a table top position, on a slight angle. Keep your body in neutral. Caunt 1...2...3..4 all the way up to ten until you reach 100.
re: The Hundred
By Jeannie1member has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Nov 19, 2006 07:38 PM
SammyAnn - how do you do them with an exercise ball? I'm very interested in that!!

heidita - I didn't know that you were suppose to work up to doing 100 in one breath! It's amazing what you can learn in a day
re: The Hundred
By Missdanciamember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Tue Nov 21, 2006 06:34 AM
Here it is!! And a lot of of other exercises aswell!! :) . . .
re: The Hundred
By Mekare
On Sat Jan 20, 2007 05:32 PM
Heidita, your comment is complete nonsense and actually very dangerous.

You always breathe on 5 counts on the hundred.

No certified Pilates instructor will ever mess with your breathing pattern, it can cause hyperventilation.
re: The Hundred
By misspetamember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Sun Jan 21, 2007 12:45 AM
With marie winsors maximum burn

for the 1st 60, its always breathe in for 5 then out for 5, then for the next 40 its breathe in for 4 out 6, in 3 out 7, in 2 out 8, in 1 out 9 and thats it

i like doing it that way.
re: The Hundred
By Pasdekatmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Jan 21, 2007 12:03 PM
To add to what's already been said:

-When first learning the hundred it can be beneficial to perform the arm movement and the breath alone in a seated or kneeling position before performing the full exercise

-it is an acceptable modification to keep both feet planted on the floor, knees bent

-initiate the arm movement with the shoulders and emphasize the "down"

-watch that the head it not
"bobbing up and down", keep the head still and keep scooping the abs, it is an acceptable modification to lightly place one hand behind the head

-keep the eyes on the knees

-watch that the arms arent to close in towards one another, avoid protraction of the scapula, keep shoulders down and back, remember to stabalize

-watch that the spine remains imprinted. If the low back starts to lift up off the mat, the legs are probably too low

-maintain the "scoop" (pelvic floor muscles and transverse abdominals engaging), don't allow the abs to "pop out"


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