As part of our mission to provide accessible wellbeing, and our belief that bodycare goes beyond product we’ve enlisted the help of Sports Scientist, fitness coach and industry menopause specialist, Rachel Hubbard. Rachel continues our targeted body+care series and explains how to support your lower body with exercises and stretches that help improve mobility and strengthen legs, bums and tums.


Discover why the lower body is so important and learn how to care for it with these informative how-to videos and step-by-step stretches that can be done from the comfort of your desk, the sofa or even your bed. 

“In today's sedentary lifestyle, overlooking the importance of exercise for the abdominal and gluteal muscles, or what we used to call "tums & bums," can have significant repercussions on overall health and well-being.
As women age, maintaining strong abdominal and gluteal muscles becomes increasingly important for overall health and mobility.
Beyond aesthetic concerns, a robust core and posterior chain contribute to improved posture, balance, and functional movement, enhancing quality of life and independence. Therefore, implementing targeted exercises tailored to strengthen the "tums" (abdominals) and "bums" (gluteal muscles) is paramount, particularly for women over 55.”
“The potential consequences of neglecting to exercise these muscle groups are:

1.    decreased core strength
2.    increased risk of lower back pain
3.    reduced balance and stability
4.    poor posture and alignment
5.    diminished functional mobility”

1. decreased core strength:

“Without regular exercise to strengthen the abdominal muscles, the core may become weak and unstable. This can lead to poor posture, increased risk of back pain, and reduced ability to perform daily activities that require core stability, such as bending, lifting, and twisting.
Research published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science1 highlights the correlation between core muscle weakness and low back pain2,  emphasising the importance of targeted exercises to improve core strength and stability.”

2. increased risk of lower back pain:

“Weak abdominal muscles can contribute to postural imbalances that can affect the spine and possible increased stress on the lower back and pelvic area.
This can result in chronic lower back pain and discomfort, as well as potential issues such as herniated discs or sciatica.
A systematic review published in the European Spine Journal found a significant association between weak abdominal muscles and the incidence of low back pain, underscoring the importance of core strengthening exercises in preventing and managing this condition.”

3. reduced balance and stability:

“The gluteal muscles play a crucial role in stabilising the pelvis,  hips and lumber pelvic region during movement. Weakness in these muscles can affect your balance and stability, increasing the risk of falls and injuries, particularly in older adults.
Research published in the Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy demonstrates the positive impact of gluteal muscle strengthening exercises on balance and gait performance in older adults3, highlighting the importance of incorporating such exercises into your fitness routine.4

4. poor posture and alignment:

“Weakness in the abdominal and gluteal muscles may  contribute to poor posture and alignment of the spine and pelvis. An anterior pelvic tilt can occur when the pelvis tilts forwards, causing an increase in the curvature of the lower back – we often see compensatory movement in the upper body where the shoulder round to help us to balance, often leading to tight lower back & hip flexors, and a weakness in the glutes and abdominals.
It often occurs due to factors such as sitting for a long time, being inactive, having a weak core or other muscle imbalances.
A study published in the Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy suggests that exercises aimed at improving core stability and posture through strength and flexibility training can help us to alleviate symptoms of musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction5.”

5. diminished functional mobility:

“The “tums and bums” are involved in a wide range of movements, including walking, running, lifting, and climbing stairs.
Without adequate strength and stability in these muscles, our daily functional mobility can be compromised, making it challenging to perform everyday tasks and activities with ease and confidence.
A systematic review and meta-analysis published in the Journal of Aging Research and Clinical Practice highlights the importance of resistance training in improving functional mobility and quality of life in older adults, emphasising the role of a variety of exercises to strengthen and condition our abdominal and gluteal muscles.”


strengthening exercises

“One of the most effective ways to strengthen the tums and bums is through a combination of exercises that engage the core and gluteal muscles.
For instance, Pilates-inspired workouts emphasise controlled movements and proper alignment, promoting core stability and strengthening the deep abdominal muscles. A study published in the Journal of Aging Research and Clinical Practice found that Pilates exercises led to significant improvements in core strength, flexibility, and balance in older women.”
“In addition to Pilates, resistance band exercises offer a convenient and versatile option for strengthening the tums and bums. Research published in the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity suggests that resistance band training effectively improves muscle strength and functional performance in older adults. Exercises such as standing crunches, prone or seated glute bridges, orlateral band walks, mean that women over 55 can strengthen their abdominal and gluteal muscles with low-impact resistance training.”
“Furthermore, functional exercises that mimic daily activities can help reinforce core stability and improve mobility. Climbing stairs, standing up from a chair without using hands, and performing squats with proper form are all practical movements that engage the tums and bums. A study in the Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy supports the efficacy of functional exercises in improving balance, gait, and overall physical function in older adults.”


“Pilates is an excellent training method that has a strong emphasis on core strength, flexibility, and postrual alignment. Whilst traditional Pilates exercises are often performed on a mat or specialised equipment, standing Pilates offers a convenient and accessible alternative.  It is  particularly suitable for those who may prefer to avoid floor-based exercises due to possible joint discomfort or mobility issues – and  is of great  benefit to us all , as much of our daily active living is done in upright position.”
“Standing Pilates targets the deep abdominal muscles (the "tums") and gluteal muscles (the "bums"), helping to improve core stability, posture, and pelvic alignment. By incorporating standing variations of classic Pilates exercises, such as standing single leg stretch, knee lifts, lateral movements, and incorporating upper body movements to help us to stabilise we find that we can  engage our abdominal and gluteal muscles and improve our balance and coordination.”

research supporting the efficacy of pilates

“Numerous studies have highlighted the benefits of Pilates for menopausal women, with particular emphasis on its ability to improve core strength, alleviate musculoskeletal pain, and enhance overall well-being. A randomised controlled trial published in the Journal of Physical Therapy Science found that Pilates-based exercises significantly reduced some of the menopausal symptoms, including hot flashes and joint pain, while also improving functional mobility and quality of life.”
“Furthermore, a systematic review and meta-analysis published in Menopause: The Journal of The North American Menopause Society concluded that Pilates interventions effectively improved muscle strength, flexibility, and balance in menopausal women, highlighting its potential as a safe and accessible exercise modality during this life stage.”

the importance of standing pilates for menopause:

“Standing Pilates offers menopausal women a gentle yet effective way to strengthen their "tums & bums" without putting undue stress on the joints or spine. By focusing on alignment, breath control, and mindful movement, standing Pilates promotes body awareness and mindfulness, helping women connect with their bodies in a positive and empowering way.”

“As Joseph Pilates famously said, "Physical fitness is the first requisite of happiness." Indeed, maintaining an active lifestyle during menopause can help women navigate this transitional phase with grace and resilience. By incorporating standing Pilates into their fitness routine, women can strengthen their core, improve their posture, and boost their confidence, all while enjoying the many benefits of this versatile and enjoyable exercise method.”


1. Standaert, C.J., Weinstein, S.M. and Rumpeltes, J., 2008. Evidence-informed management of chronic low back pain with lumbar stabilization exercises. The spine journal, 8(1), pp.114-120.

2. Kumar, T., Kumar, S., Nezamuddin, M. and Sharma, V.P., 2015. Efficacy of core muscle strengthening exercise in chronic low back pain patients. Journal of back and musculoskeletal rehabilitation, 28(4), pp.699-707.

3. Lopopolo, R.B., Greco, M., Sullivan, D., Craik, R.L. and Mangione, K.K., 2006. Effect of therapeutic exercise on gait speed in community-dwelling elderly people: a meta-analysis. Physical therapy, 86(4), pp.520-540.

4. Salsabila, B.I., Rahman, F., Lindoyo, Y., Salsabila, B.I., Rahman, F. and Lindoyo, Y., 2023. Different Effects of Single-leg Stance Exercise and Bridging Exercise with Core Stability Exercise on Older Adults Balance. Exercise Science, 32(3), pp.286-294.

5. Delitto, A., George, S.Z., Van Dillen, L., Whitman, J.M., Sowa, G., Shekelle, P., Denninger, T.R., Godges, J.J., Beneciuk, J.M., Bishop, M.D. and Kramer, C.D., 2012. Low back pain: clinical practice guidelines linked to the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health from the Orthopaedic Section of the American Physical Therapy Association. Journal of orthopaedic & sports physical therapy, 42(4), pp.A1-A57.