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If you are looking a for a quick pilates reference, take a look at this pilates animation. This a quick & easy, clearly explained diagram of the pilates mat exercise: Classical Pilates for Beginners:
The Side Kick Series: Inner Thigh Lifts & Circles. Pilates exercises focus on breathing, alignments of the spine & build strong torso muscles.
Setup for Side Kick Series: Inner Thigh Lifts & Circles:
* Reach down behind your ankle, pull your foot up and plant it in front of your hip.
* Turn your knee out to the ceiling.
* Engage your powerhouse and keep your shoulders and hips vertically stacked.
Action for Side Kick Series: Inner Thigh Lifts.
* Breathe normally: Lengthen and lift your lower leg. Keep the knee locked and the toe toward the kneecap.
* Lengthen and lower.
Action for Side Kick Series: Circles.
* Make a big circle with your your leg toward the front, then up around and back.
* Reverse the direction.
Classic Pilates Cueing:
* Lengthen up, and lengthen down.
* Lift Lift, lower lower.
* Circle round and one and two and three...
* Reverse and one and two and three...
* Stretches the uppermost buttock just when it is ready to respond to stretching.
* Works the thigh adductors.
* Circle the leg just as much behind as you do forward.
* Stay stacked and stable - Imagine that buttocks and shoulders are lined up against the wall behind you.
* Keep the upper knee pointing to the ceiling and the foot firmly planted on the ground.
Don't let an injury or weakness stop you! There is always a modification. Take your time and find the right one for you. If in doubt, seek advice!
* Back, sacrum or knee pain - put your knee on a cushion, with the foot on the ground if you can.