Andrea Metcalf demonstrates the sit, lean and reach.
Living a healthier life is important, and people with pets have an advantage. Pet owners tend to live longer due to the reduction in stress hormone cortisol, according to a study at University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri. As the owner of two dogs, I have created Paws-ilates™. It blends spine-strengthening exercises, core toners and some simple lifts with Fido, or in my case, Wrigley, to help you stand taller and spend time with your dog. Here are a few simple exercises I can recommend with dogs 25 pounds or less.

Paws-ilates is a program for people and pets to enjoy. Pilates core moves and gentle pet massage create a special time to reconnect, decompress and do something great for yourself as well as your pet.
Step 1—The Sit, Lean and Reach

Start in a seated position with knees slightly bent. Your pooch sits in front or facing you and, holding onto your pet with both hands, lean back and reach. Simply secure your pet, engage your core and lean back and reach. Keep your spine tall and chest open. Exhale as you lean back, inhale as you sit upright. Perform 10 to 20 alternating repetitions.

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