How to Do Single Leg Kick in Pilates: Tips, Technique, Correct Form, Benefits and Common Mistakes

Single Leg Kick in Pilates (Image via Pexels/Photo by Gustavo Fring)
Single Leg Kick in Pilates (Image via Pexels/Photo by Gustavo Fring)
Shuvangi Sen Chaudhury

The Single Leg Kick in Pilates should be a part of your workout routine, especially on leg days. Even though it's designed for beginners, anyone who does advanced workouts on leg days can also benefit from this movement.

Ideally, this movement works on the hamstrings and helps with stretching the muscles and improving endurance.

Correct form of doing Single Leg kick in Pilates

This exercise is a part of the extension section in Pilates.


It's done as follows:

  • Lie down on your chest on a mat, and keep your palms close together near your chest, in a push-up position.
  • Slide your elbows underneath your shoulders, and bring your fists together to connect them. That provides a proper stretch on your forearms.
  • Put your legs together, and ensure your pubic bone is pressed on the mat, and slightly lift your abdominal muscles.
  • Bend your right leg backwards from the knees, where your heels are trying to reach your buttocks. However, it’ll be one swift motion. Lick/pulse twice at the top of the motion before moving to the neutral position.
  • Do it alternatively on each leg for at least ten to 15 reps.

Tips to do Single Leg Kick in Pilates better

When you’re doing the exercise, try and keep your pelvis as steady as possible. Moreover, widen your collar bones, and flare your chest during the movement.


When you’re done with the reps, inhale, and exhale before moving your upper body all the way down to the mat.

Benefits of doing Single Leg Kick in Pilates

There are quite a few benefits of doing this movement. While it works on your hamstrings, it also focuses on strengthening your back and core muscles.

Additionally, this movement helps in working on the smaller muscles surrounding the hamstrings and help in activating the muscles for better growth and endurance. The Single Leg Kick can also help with improving posture, balance and flexibility.

Common Mistakes while Performing Single Leg Kick in Pilates

Whenever you include a new movement in your workout routine, you need to be aware of common mistakes. That helps you master the movement quicker and move to advanced variations of the same.


Disengaged Core

As mentioned earlier, the core muscles play a key role in providing stability to the body. Whenever you do a movement in Pilates, stability is of utmost importance. Hence, it's important to keep your core engaged throughout the movement. Moreover, engaging your core during the Single Leg Raise can help in protecting your back.

Legs sagging to the side

Whenever you do this exercise, you must look to keep your knees close to your legs, and pull from your hamstrings. If you feel the pressure coming from anywhere else other than your hamstrings, you need to fix your posture.

Neck position

This exercise requires you to keep your neck straight. You can look up, but don’t look too high up. Avoid putting any form of stress or strain on your neck. Finally, do not let your shoulders slouch during the exercise.

Edited by Bhargav


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