The Power of the Belly

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3. Hip Dips

Kneel on a pillow, sit on your heels and extend your arms out to the sides. Use additional pillows under your knees, feet or buttocks, as needed for comfort. Rise up on your knees and relax your arms into the Aladdin Arms position. Reach your left arm out to the side and put your right hand behind your head. Dip and gently swing your hips to the left. Return to the center, sit on your heels and place your arms across your chest in the Mummy Arms position (arms crossed at your chest, fingertips facing up). Repeat on the other side. Continue for 1-2 minutes.

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1. Twist and Lean

Warm-up
Stand with your feet wider than hip distance and your knees slightly bent. Take a deep breath in through your nose, raise your arms toward the sky and hold briefly. Cross your arms in front of your chest as you exhale and slowly bring your arms down, then out to the sides. Repeat 3 times.

Begin in the Belly Pose position: Stand on your left leg, with your knee slightly bent. Place your right foot in front of you, the ball of your foot touching the floor. Let your arms float out to the sides while keeping your wrists slightly bent and your hands at belly level. Turn and twist your upper body to the left. Place your right hand behind your head, then lean back to your left. Raise your left arm and lower your right. Return to the Belly Pose position, then switch your foot position, and continue alternating sides for 1-2 minutes.

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4. Cobra Side Stretches

Begin in the Mermaid Pose position: Sit on the floor, leaning on your right hip with your knees bent and feet together. Extend your arms gently out to the sides. Raise your arms overhead and clasp your thumbs together. Lean to the left, and sway your arms in the same direction. Move your arms and hands in a wave-like motion—a ripple that moves from your fingertips to your shoulders. Return to the center and repeat. Repeat for 1-2 minutes on one side, then switch sides.

Cool Down
Sit on a pillow, bend your knees and place the bottoms of your feet together, bringing your legs into a diamond shape. Hold your feet and gently rock from side to side like a cradle. Repeat for 1-2 minutes, breathing slowly.

Your Post-Baby Belly Once your baby arrives, belly dancing can get you back into shape quickly, building your stamina, burning calories and whittling your middle.
To adjust these moves for a postnatal workout, twist farther and sink deeper when doing the hip movements. If you feel up to it, do a longer dance set.

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2. Hip Swings

Begin in the Mummy Squat position: Stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees bent and arms crossed at your chest, fingertips pointing up (Mummy Arms). Gently swing your hips to the left as you lift your left heel, keeping your toes firmly planted on the floor. Extend your left arm out at shoulder height and reach your right arm overhead. Return to the starting position. Gently swing your hips to the right as you lift your right heel, extend your right arm out at shoulder height and reach your left arm overhead. Alternate sides for 1-2 minutes.

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